The evolution of the free surface of a three-dimensional conducting fluid in the presence of gravity, surface tension and vertical electric field due to parallel electrodes, is considered. Based on the analysis of the Dirichlet–Neumann operators, a series of fully nonlinear models is derived systematically from the Euler equations in the Hamiltonian framework without assumptions on competing length scales can therefore be applied to systems of arbitrary fluid depth and to disturbances with arbitrary wavelength. For special cases, well-known weakly nonlinear models in shallow and deep fluids can be generalized via introducing extra electric terms. It is shown that the electric field has a great impact on the physical system and can change the qualitative nature of the free surface: (i) when the separation distance between two electrodes is small compared with typical wavelength, the Boussinesq, Benney–Luke (BL) and Kadomtsev–Petviashvili (KP) equations with modified coefficients are obtained, and electric forces can turn KP-I to KP-II and vice versa; (ii) as the parallel electrodes are of large separation distance but the thickness of the liquid is much smaller than typical wavelength, we generalize the BL and KP equations by adding pseudo-differential operators resulting from the electric field; (iii) for a quasi-monochromatic plane wave in deep fluid, we derive the cubic nonlinear Schrödinger (NLS) equation, but its type (focusing or defocusing) is strongly influenced by the value of the electric parameter. For sufficient surface tension, numerical studies reveal that lump-type solutions exist in the aforementioned three regimes. Particularly, even when the associated NLS equation is defocusing for a wave train, lumps can exist in fully nonlinear models.
- Received November 2, 2016.
- Accepted March 1, 2017.
- © 2017 The Author(s)
Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.