The stability of stationary turbulent flows as a problem in non-equilibrium statistical mechanics

The Australian National University, Canberra
Higgs Centre Seminar Room, JCMB
Monday, November 11, 2013
16:00 to 17:00

Variational principles of fluid turbulence offer an attractive alternative to numerical solution of the Navier-Stokes equation, especially for global climate studies. In this talk I’ll discuss the conjecture of maximum kinetic energy dissipation and its application to turbulent channel flow and climate systems, as well as its theoretical basis in non-equilibrium statistical mechanics (NESM). Within the Jaynes-Shannon formulation of NESM, maximum kinetic energy dissipation may be understood as one of a wider class of maximum entropy production (MaxEP) principles, with applications to many other non-equilibrium systems, including living systems. I’ll touch briefly on biological applications of MaxEP and the new light they shed on Darwinian evolution.