Modal analysis and interface tracking of multiphase flows using Dynamic Mode Decomposition

Palash Sashittal, Robert Chiodi, Timothy B. Morgan, Olivier Desjardins, Theodore J. Heindel, Daniel J. Bodony

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Non-invasive visualization techniques for multiphase flows are critical to understanding primary atomization and sprays. We use back-lit imaging to identify the liquid–gas interface of two-phase flows at high temporal and spatial resolutions and employ Dynamic Mode Decomposition (DMD) to study the shape and frequency of instabilities of a liquid jet surrounded by a coaxial annular airblast atomizer. However, DMD is not suitable for interface tracking, so we develop a data-driven two-step approach using the optical sensor data. The method uses DMD on the optical flow field estimated from image snapshot pairs. We demonstrate our method to a representative toy problem of an oscillating drop and on the primary atomization of a numerical planar liquid jet. Finally, we apply our method to the experimental liquid jet from the coaxial airblast atomizer using back-lit imaging. Our method is able to accurately reconstruct and predict the flow and preserves the sharpness of the fluid interface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104198
JournalInternational Journal of Multiphase Flow
StatePublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Atomizing jet
  • Dynamic mode decomposition
  • Optical flow estimation
  • Reduced-order modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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