Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Parviz Merati

Second Advisor

Dr. Tianshu Liu

Third Advisor

Dr. Daniel Litynski

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Christopher Cho


This paper describes an experimental study on the flow within a rotating cylinder with a counter-rotating disk located below to mimic certain aspects of the unique flow structures of the Great Red Spot (GRS) in Jupiter using a simple laboratory setup. The special design of this setup makes it capable of spinning the side wall of a vertical cylinder in both directions as well as rotating the bottom of the cylinder independently, where both can rotate in wide ranges of spin rates. Also, different thermal conditions can be applied on the bottom of the disk. All of these conditions provide the opportunity of generating two upward concentric vortices. Using the Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) method in each set of experiments this study tries to track the particles of smoke in a pair of consecutive images in order to extract the velocity vectors for the entire domain in horizontal and vertical planes. Two dimensional velocity and vorticity fields are achievable by means of processing the consecutive images taken by the camera that mounted vertically on top of the cylindrical wall. The typical flow structures in the lower, transitional, and upper domains are described in detail, and in particular the intriguing features in the transitional domain are discussed. The three-dimensional flow structures of the torus vortices are qualitatively reconstructed. The thermal buoyancy effect induced by disk heating on the flow structures is investigated. Finally Co-rotating flow is introduced and different features of that flow is studied.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access