We observe a new type of behavior in a shear-thinning yield stress fluid: freestanding convection rolls driven by vertical oscillation. The convection occurs without the constraint of container boundaries, yet the diameter of the rolls is spontaneously selected for a wide range of parameters. The transition to the convecting state occurs without hysteresis when the amplitude of the plate acceleration exceeds a critical value. We find that a nondimensional stress, the stress due to the inertia of the fluid normalized by the yield stress, governs the onset of the convective motion.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)