We introduce a dynamical description based on a probability density φ(σ,x,y,t) of the vorticity σ in two-dimensional viscous flows such that the average vorticity evolves according to the Navier-Stokes equations. A time-dependent mixing index is defined and the class of probability densities that maximizes this index is studied. The time dependence of the Lagrange multipliers can be chosen in such a way that the masses m(σ,t):=∫dxdyφ(σ,x,y,t) associated with each vorticity value σ are conserved. When the masses m(σ,t) are conserved then 1) the mixing index satisfies an H-theorem and 2) the mixing index is the time-dependent analogue of the entropy employed in the statistical mechanical theory of inviscid 2D flows [Miller, Weichman & Cross, Phys. Rev. A 45 (1992); Robert & Sommeria, Phys. Rev. Lett. 69, 2776 (1992)]. Within this framework we also show how to reconstruct the probability density of the quasi-stationary coherent structures from the experimentally determined vorticity-stream function relations and we provide a connection between this probability density and an appropriate initial distribution.
RA Pasmanter, HW Capel. Mixing and coherent structures in two-dimensional viscous flows
2007, 2007, CNRS, Academie des Sciences, Observatoire de la Cote d\'Azur, Elsevier, Physica D