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Bulk Viscosity, Thermoacoustic Boundary Layers, and Adsorption Near the Critical Point



Keith A. Gillis, Iosif I. Shinder, Michael R. Moldover


We measured the resonance spectrum of an acoustic resonator filled with xenon near its critical temperature Tc. We reduced the effect of gravity on the xenon by convective stirring to achieve a temperature resolution of (T-Tc)/Tc 7 10-6. The data yield accurate values of xenon s speed of sound, acoustic dissipation, and thermal conductivity. Linear acoustics, including the frequency-dependent bulk viscosity from renormalization-group theory, predicts the dissipation within the thermoacoustic boundary layer peaks at characteristic temperatures. The peak was not observed. We show that critical-point adsorption is one mechanism that can suppress the peak.
Physical Review Letters


acoustic resonators, adsorption, attenuation, bulk viscosity, convection, critical point, speed of sound, thermoacoustic boundary layer, ultrasonics xenon


Gillis, K. , Shinder, I. and Moldover, M. (2006), Bulk Viscosity, Thermoacoustic Boundary Layers, and Adsorption Near the Critical Point, Physical Review Letters, [online], (Accessed May 20, 2024)


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Created September 8, 2006, Updated February 19, 2017