Date of Award

Spring 2010

Project Type


Program or Major

Mechanical Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

John McHugh


The dynamics of a vortex pair in a stratified atmosphere near a density gradient interface is considered here using direct numerical simulations. The vortex pair is released below the interface and allowed to propagate vertically toward the interface. The results show that strong vortices propagate through the interface without much change in dynamics. Weaker vortices will dissipate energy when they reach the interface and although a remnant of the vortex pair transits the interface, it does not achieve the same altitude that it would have without the interface. Overall, the interface is not a barrier to vortex pairs, but would be expected to change the distribution of energy in more complicated flows.