Physics of clouds: Long-held ideas about turbulence disproven

11 marzo 2015

In 1941, Russian physicist Andrey Kolmogorov developed a theory of turbulence that has served as the basic foundation for our understanding of this important naturally occurring phenomenon. Turbulence occurs when fluid flow is characterized by chaotic physical changes. Kolmogorov’s theory has been interpreted to imply that transitions from one state of turbulence to another must be a smooth evolution because very intense fluctuations that are part of the process itself would smooth out anything sharp. Now, however, a new experiment disproves this interpretation of Kolmogorov’s theory.