University of Cambridge > > Institute for Energy and Environmental Flows (IEEF) > Kinneyia, a fossil hydrodynamic instability

Kinneyia, a fossil hydrodynamic instability

Add to your list(s) Download to your calendar using vCal

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Catherine Pearson.

Microbial mats from over half the history of the Earth have been fossilised with intriguing ripple patterns on them, a few millimetres wide. We show that these features can be caused by a Kelvin-Helmholz-like instability, of the flow of water over a viscoelastic fluid like the protein-rich slimy matrix of a microbial colony. By a combination of analogue experiments, and linear stability analysis, we show that the conditions for the formation of such small-scale ripples should be incredibly generic, and also develop a scaling analysis for their wavelength selection. This allows us to use the structure of Kinneyia as an indicator of the growth conditions of algal mats in the deep precambrian.

This talk is part of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Flows (IEEF) series.

Tell a friend about this talk:

This talk is included in these lists:

Note that ex-directory lists are not shown.


© 2006-2024, University of Cambridge. Contact Us | Help and Documentation | Privacy and Publicity