Collective Effects in Vortex Movements in Complex Plasmas

M Schwabe and S Zhdanov and C Rath and DB Graves and HM Thomas and GE Morfill, PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS, 112, 115002 (2014).

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.112.115002

We study the onset and characteristics of vortices in complex (dusty) plasmas using two-dimensional simulations in a setup modeled after the PK-3 Plus laboratory. A small number of microparticles initially self- arranges in a monolayer around the void. As additional particles are introduced, an extended system of vortices develops due to a nonzero curl of the plasma forces. We demonstrate a shear-thinning effect in the vortices. Velocity structure functions and the energy and enstrophy spectra show that vortex flow turbulence is present that is in essence of the "classical" Kolmogorov type.

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