Observation of gravity-capillary wave turbulence

E. Falcon1, C. Laroche1 and S. Fauve2

  1 Labo. Physique, ENS Lyon, UMR 5972 CNRS, 46 allée d'Italie, 69007 Lyon, France
2 LPS, ENS Paris, UMR 8550 CNRS, 24 rue Lhomond, 75 005 Paris, France


Physical Review Letters 98, 094503 (2007)


We report the observation of the cross-over between gravity and capillary wave turbulence on the surface of mercury. The probability density functions of the turbulent wave height are found to be asymmetric and thus non Gaussian. The surface wave height displays power-law spectra in both regimes. In the capillary region, the exponent is in fair agreement with weak turbulence theory. In the gravity region, it depends on the forcing parameters. This can be related to the finite size of the container. In addition, the scaling of those spectra with the mean energy flux is found in disagreement with weak turbulence theory for both regimes.

Keywords : 
wave turbulence – surface wave - gravity waves – capillary waves – Kolmogorov type spectrum – experiment – probability density function - fluctuations - Non Gaussian statistics - energy flux - injected power - weak turbulence

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