Underwater Avalanche

Year: 
2015
Ranking: 
Entrant
Artist: 
Mohamad Nasr-Azadani
Department: 
Mechanical Engineering
Lab: 
CFD Lab

Description

Turbidity currents are density-driven suspension flows which travel along the seafloor carrying sediment into deep water regions. These currents are innately unpredictable and catastrophic; they are one of the known causes of tsunamis, underwater landslides, and ocean floor erosion. Turbidity currents - also known as underwater avalanches - play a major role in the global sediment cycle, environmental processes, and formation of hydrocarbon reservoirs. With the advent of supercomputers, the scientists have been finally enabled to render realistic models of turbidity currents and study their behavior in aquatic environments. The layer (shown in white), exhibits the rich and complex morphology of a turbidity current interacting with the deep sea topography. Study of such flow structures sheds light on the enigma of extremely long travel distances (up to 3,500 miles) of sediments in submarine channels, most notably, Bengal Fan, Amazon Fan, and Congo Fan.

CSEP CNSI Schuller Lab UCSB