A diffusion-induced transition in the phase separation of binary fluid mixtures subjected to a temperature ramp
1 Max-Planck-Institut für Dynamik und Selbstorganisation (MPIDS) - 37077 Göttingen, Germany, EU
2 Fakultät für Physik, Universität Göttingen - 37077 Göttingen, Germany, EU
Received: 27 April 2012
Accepted: 4 September 2012
Demixing of binary fluids under slow temperature ramps shows repeated waves of nucleation which arise as a consequence of the competition between generation of supersaturation by the temperature ramp and relaxation of supersaturation by diffusive transport and flow. Here, we use an advection-reaction-diffusion model to study the oscillations in the weak- and strong-diffusion regime. There is a sharp transition between the two regimes, which can only be understood based on the spatial distribution of the composition, rather than in terms of the average composition. Our results shed light on the parameter drift and secondary features observed in phase separating fluids subjected to a temperature ramp, and they bear intriguing communalities with macroscopic oscillations due to synchronization of life cycles in ageing populations.
PACS: 64.70.Ja – Liquid-liquid transitions / 05.45.-a – Nonlinear dynamics and chaos / 47.70.Fw – Chemically reactive flows
© EPLA, 2012