Location:Leiden, The Netherlands

Thermal buoyancy is arguably the largest dynamic force in the universe. It is the active agent in the dynamics of the Earth's atmosphere and oceans, the driving force behind the interior motion of the Earth's core that produces the magnetic field through dynamo action. It is also the mechanism that transports heat in stars during its productive cycle. In many of these systems, rotation is a major ingredient in determining the heat transport mechanisms and their efficiency. The accurate description of the interplay of thermal buoyancy and rotation is thus a critical one for understanding and predicting the behavior of a huge range of physical phenomena with important implications, for example, in weather, climate, and even space weather. Because of the enormous complexity of geophysical and astrophysical systems, the complementary approaches of laboratory experiments, numerical simulations and theoretical analysis are essential for progress in the modeling of physical states that balance rotation and buoyancy. Adding rotation to thermal convective flows provides an interplay between rotation and buoyancy that is both straightforward and subtle at the same time. It has been understood since the 1950s that convection - the advective transport of heat owing to thermal buoyancy - is both suppressed ...

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