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What is behind Einstein’s turbulences? Calculations give initial insight into relativistic properties of this process

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Posted April 4, 2013
Snapshots at different times of a simulation of the energy density of a driven turbulent flow in a hot plasma. Bright regions represent portions of the flow with the largest energies and temperatures. Copyright: D. Radice, L. Rezzolla (AEI)

Snapshots at different times of a simulation of the energy density of a driven turbulent flow in a hot plasma. Bright regions represent portions of the flow with the largest energies and temperatures. Copyright: D. Radice, L. Rezzolla (AEI)

The American Nobel Prize Laureate for Physics Richard Feynman once described turbulence as “the most important unsolved problem of classical physics”, because a description of the phenomenon from first principles does not exist. This is still regarded as one of the six most important problems in mathematics today. David Radice and Luciano Rezzolla from the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute/AEI) in Potsdam have now taken a major step toward solving this problem: For the first time, a new computer code has provided relativistic calculations that give scientists a better understanding of turbulent processes in regimes that can be found in astrophysical phenomena.

Turbulent flows are very common and play a major role in the dynamics of physical processes. We all come across turbulence on a daily basis, for example every time we mix milk and coffee, or in gasoline-air mixture in combustion engines, or in the diluted hot plasma of the intergalactic medium.

Read more at: Phys.org

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