The use of cryogenic helium for classical turbulence: Promises and hurdles

J. J. Niemela, K. R. Sreenivasan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Fluid turbulence is a paradigm for non-linear systems with many degrees of freedom and important in numerous applications. Because the analytical understanding of the equations of motion is poor, experiments and, lately, direct numerical simulations of the equations of motion, have been fundamental to making progress. In this vein, a concerted experimental effort has been made to take advantage of the unique properties of liquid and gaseous helium at low temperatures near or below the critical point. We discuss the promise and impact of results from recent helium experiments and identify the current technical barriers which can perhaps be removed by low temperature researchers. We focus mainly on classical flows that utilize helium above the lambda line, but touch on those aspects below that exhibit quasi-classical behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-212
Number of pages50
JournalJournal of Low Temperature Physics
Issue number5-6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2006



  • Cryogenic turbulence
  • Quantized vorticies
  • Thermal convection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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