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Dust flux within dust devils: Preliminary laboratory simulations

Neakrase, Lynn D. V.; Greeley, Ronald; Iversen, James D.; Balme, M. R. and Eddlemon, Eric E. (2006). Dust flux within dust devils: Preliminary laboratory simulations. Geophysical Research Letters, 33 L19S09.

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Laboratory simulations using the Arizona State University Vortex Generator (ASUVG) were run to simulate dust flux in dust devils. These tests used particles 2 μm in diameter and 2600 kg m−3 in density, and the results were compared with data from natural dust devils on Earth and Mars. Typically, the cores of dust devils (regardless of planetary environment) have a pressure drop of ∼0.2–1.5 percent of ambient atmospheric pressure. Core pressure drops in our experiments ranged from ∼0.01 to 5.00 percent of ambient pressure (10 mbar Mars cases and 1000 mbar for Earth cases). Flux experiments were run at vortex tangential wind velocities of 1 to 42 m s−1; typically ∼35–50 percent above threshold values for the particles used. Dust flux was determined by time averaged measurements of mass loss for a given vortex size. Dust fluxes of ∼10−3 kg m−2 s−1 were obtained, similar to estimates for flux for dust devils on Earth and Mars, regardless of core size. Vortex strength appears to be closely related to the strength of the pressure drop in the core (ΔP) and is less determined by size of the vortex. This is critical in scaling the laboratory results to natural dust devils.

Item Type: Journal Article
ISSN: 0094-8276
Academic Unit/Department: Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) > Physical Sciences
Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Earth, Planetary, Space and Astronomical Research (CEPSAR)
Item ID: 12572
Depositing User: Matthew Balme
Date Deposited: 11 Dec 2008 10:47
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2016 16:21
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