Front propagation in cellular flows for fast reaction and small diffusivity

Alexandra Tzella*, Jacques Vanneste

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

We investigate the influence of fluid flows on the propagation of chemical fronts arising in Fisher-Kolmogorov-Petrovsky-Piskunov (FKPP) type models. We develop an asymptotic theory for the front speed in a cellular flow in the limit of small molecular diffusivity and fast reaction, i.e., large Peclet (Pe) and Damkohler (Da) numbers. The front speed is expressed in terms of a periodic path-an instanton-that minimizes a certain functional. This leads to an efficient procedure to calculate the front speed, and to closed-form expressions for (log Pe)(-1) > Pe. Our theoretical predictions are compared with (i) numerical solutions of an eigenvalue problem and (ii) simulations of the advection-diffusion-reaction equation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number011001
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jul 2014

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • WAVE


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