What happens to the initial planar instability when the thermal gradient is increased during directional solidification?

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  • Zhi-Jun Wang
  • Jin-Cheng Wang
  • Jun-Jie Li
  • Gen-Cang Yang
  • Yao-He Zhou


Original languageEnglish
Article number108104
Journal / PublicationChinese Physics B
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes


The positive thermal gradient is one of the most important parameters during directional solidification. The increase of the thermal gradient usually stabilizes the planar interface in the steady state analysis. However, in the initial transient range of planar instability, the thermal gradient presents complicated effects. Time-dependent analysis shows that the increase of the thermal gradient can enhance both the stabilizing effects and the destabilizing effects on a planar interface. The incubation time first decreases and then increases with the increase of the thermal gradient. Moreover, the initial average wavelength always increases with the thermal gradient increasing, contrary to the effect of the thermal gradient on the steady cellular/dendritic spacing. This reveals the types of spacing adjustment after planar instability. © 2011 Chinese Physical Society and IOP Publishing Ltd.

Research Area(s)

  • directional solidification, initial planar instability, thermal gradient, transient behavior

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