Exploration of Fluid Meandering by Statistical Simulation

Fluid meanders, such as river meandering, fluid intrusions, and microscopic flows over a surface, are difficult to model from classical dynamics. Another approach is to select trajectories from a randomly generated sample. This Demonstration generates individual trajectories with a few controls. The simulated process is a fluid bead sliding down a surface dominated by friction. There are occasional lateral displacements from a choice of distributions. For some choices of parameters, the courses, outlined by the extremes of the trajectory, look very much like meanders.


  • [Snapshot]
  • [Snapshot]
  • [Snapshot]


"Up a Lazy River" is the American Scientist article that got me thinking about the problem. Albert Einstein wrote on this topic [2]. There is a mathematical model in [3].
[1] B. Hayes, "Up a Lazy River," American Scientist, 94(6), 2006 pp. 490–494.
[3] N. Movshovitz-Hadar and A. Shmukler, "River Meandering and a Mathematical Model of this Phenomenon" PhysicaPlus, No. 7, 2006.
    • Share:

Embed Interactive Demonstration New!

Just copy and paste this snippet of JavaScript code into your website or blog to put the live Demonstration on your site. More details »

Files require Wolfram CDF Player or Mathematica.