Fr.: diffusif, de diffusion
Tending to diffuse; characterized by → diffusion.
hambaz-e do paxši
An instability involving two layers of fluid with opposite gradients of properties. Same as → fingering instability. See also → salt finger. Double-diffusive instabilities commonly occur in any astrophysical fluid that is stable according to the → Ledoux criterion, as long as the entropy and chemical stratifications have opposing contributions to the dynamical stability of the system. They drive weak forms of convection, and can cause substantial heat and compositional → mixing. Two cases can be distinguished. In fingering convection, entropy is stably stratified (∇ - ∇ad < 0), but chemical composition is unstably stratified (∇μ < 0); it is often referred to as → thermohaline convection by analogy with the oceanographic context in which the instability was first discovered. In oscillatory double-diffusive convection, entropy is unstably stratified (∇ - ∇ad > 0), but chemical composition is stably stratified (∇μ > 0); it is related to semiconvection, but can occur even when the → opacity is independent of composition (P. Garaud, 2014, arXiv:1401.0928).