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Experimental pub crawl from Rayleigh–Bénard to magnetostrophic convection


The interplay between convective, rotational and magnetic forces defines the dynamics within the electrically conducting regions of planets and stars. Yet their triadic effects are separated from one another in most studies, arguably due to the richness of each subset. In a single laboratory experiment, we apply a fixed heat flux, two different magnetic field strengths and one rotation rate, allowing us to chart a continuous path through Rayleigh-Bénard convection (RBC), two regimes of magnetoconvection, rotating convection and two regimes of rotating magnetoconvection, before finishing back at RBC. Dynamically rapid transitions are determined to exist between jump rope vortex states, thermoelectrically driven magnetoprecessional modes, mixed wall- and oscillatory-mode rotating convection and a novel magnetostrophic wall mode. Thus, our laboratory 'pub crawl' provides a coherent intercomparison of the broadly varying responses arising as a function of the magnetorotational forces imposed on a liquid-metal convection system.

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