Collisions of solid particles with vortex rings in superfluid helium

Demosthenes Kivotides, S. Louise Wilkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


We have performed self-consistent computations of the interactions between a superfluid vortex-ring and a solid particle for two different vortex-ring sizes and over a wide range of temperatures. In all cases, the particle and the vortex eventually separate. For temperature T = 0 K, larger rings tend to trap the particle more effectively than smaller rings. Trying to escape the vortex, the particle follows a spiralling trajectory that could be experimentally detected. The dominant dynamical process is the excitation and propagation of Kelvin waves along the vortices. For T > 0 K, particle - vortex collision induces particle vibrations that are normal to the particle's direction of motion and might be experimentally detectable. In contrast to the T = 0 K case, smaller rings induce larger particle oscillation velocities. With increasing temperature, enhanced mutual friction damping of Kelvin waves leads to the damping of both the intensity and frequency of post-collision particle vibrations. Moreover, higher temperatures increase the relative impact of the Stokes drag force on particle motion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-387
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Early online date23 May 2008
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2008


  • vortex rings
  • superfluid helium


Dive into the research topics of 'Collisions of solid particles with vortex rings in superfluid helium'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this