Design And Development Of Diaphragmless Hypersonic Shock Tunnel
The growing requirements to achieve hypersonic flights, as in the case of reentry vehicles, pose a serious challenge to the designers. This demands an understanding of the features of hypersonic flow and its effect on hypersonic vehicles. Hypersonic shock tunnels are one of the most widely used facilities for the purpose of obtaining valuable design data by conducting experiments on scaled down models. They are operated by conventional shock tubes by rupturing metal diaphragms placed between the driver and driven sections of the shock tube. Shock tunnels are being extensively used in spite of some of the drawbacks they possess. Due to the varying nature of metal diaphragm rupture, reproducibility of the experiment results is difficult to obtain. Damage to model and inner surface of the shock tube can happen when the diaphragm petal breaks away from the diaphragm. Lastly the time consuming diaphragm replacement process is not desired in applications which require quick loading of shock waves on the specimen. All these disadvantages call for the replacement of the diaphragm mode of operation with a diaphragmless mode of operation for the generation of shock waves. The main objective of the present study is to design and demonstrate the working of a diaphragmless hypersonic shock tunnel. The motivation for the present study comes from the fact that the diaphragmless operation of a shock tunnel has not been reported so far in the open literature. All the research works carried out deal with diaphragmless drivers operating only a shock tube. In the present work, the conventional metal diaphragm is substituted by fast acting pneumatic valves which serve the purpose of quickly opening the driven section of the shock tube to allow the driver gas to rush in, resulting in the formation of a shock wave. To design a diaphragmless driver, a detailed study of the shock formation process is accomplished which helps in understanding the effect of valve opening time on the shock formation distance. Also the theoretical basis for the design of a pneumatic cylinder is understood. Following the theoretical studies, three types of diaphragmless drivers are designed and tested. The first setup incorporates a rubber membrane, which acts as a valve. The rubber membrane when bulged closes the mouth of the driven section and on retraction the driven section is opened to the driver gas. The second and the third setups utilise two different types of double acting pneumatic cylinders. Experimental results of the three diaphragmless drivers operating a shock tube are analysed and compared with the ideal shock tube theory. Better repeatability in terms of shock Mach number is shown with all three diaphragmless shock tubes when compared with a conventionally operated shock tube. Finally, the best among the three systems is identiﬁed to operate the hypersonic shock tunnel 2 (HST2) facility of the Shock Waves laboratory, IISc. Demonstration of the working of the diaphragmless shock tunnel is shown by performing heat transfer measurements on a 3 mm backward facing step flat plate model. The experimental results are compared with those obtained in a conventional shock tunnel. CFD studies on diaphragmless shock tube model are done to have an idea on the flow in the shock tube there by identifying the shock formation distance. ANSYS-CFX package is used for this purpose. Further, results from the numerical simulation of hypersonic flow over the backward facing step model are compared with the experimental results thus validating the code.
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