Tue, 17 May 2022
12:30 - 13:30
Francis Aznaran
Mathematical Institute (University of Oxford)

The Onsager framework for linear irreversible thermodynamics provides a thermodynamically consistent model of mass transport in a phase consisting of multiple species, via the Stefan–Maxwell equations, but a complete description of the overall transport problem necessitates also solving the momentum equations for the flow velocity of the medium. We derive a novel nonlinear variational formulation of this coupling, called the (Navier–)Stokes–Onsager–Stefan–Maxwell system, which governs molecular diffusion and convection within a non-ideal, single-phase fluid composed of multiple species, in the regime of low Reynolds number in the steady state. We propose an appropriate Picard linearisation posed in a novel Sobolev space relating to the diffusional driving forces, and prove convergence of a structure-preserving finite element discretisation. The broad applicability of our theory is illustrated with simulations of the centrifugal separation of noble gases and the microfluidic mixing of hydrocarbons.

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