Experimental and computational investigation of helium injection into air at supersonic and hypersonic speeds
Fuller, Eric James
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Experiments were performed with two different helium injector models at different injector transverse and yaw angles in order to determine the mixing rate and core penetration of the injectant and the flow field total pressure losses. when gaseous injection occurs into a supersonic freestream. Tested in the Virginia Tech supersonic tunnel. with a freestream Mach number of 3.0 and conditions corresponding to a freestream Reynolds number of 5.0 x 107 1m. was a single. sonic. 5X underexpanded, helium jet at a downstream angle of 30° relative to the freestream. This injector was rotated from 0° to _28° to test the effects of injector yaw. The second model was an array of three supersonic, 5X underexpanded helium injectors with an exit Mach number of 1.7 and a transverse angle of 15°. This model was tested in the NASA Langley Mach 6.0, High Reynolds number tunnel, with freestream conditions corresponding to a Reynolds number of 5.4 x 107 1m. The injector array as tested at yaw angles of 0° and -15°. Surface flow visualization showed that significant flow asymmetries were produced by injector yaw. Nanosecond exposure shadowgraph pictures were taken, showing the gaseous injection plume to be unsteady, and further studies demonstrated this unsteadiness was related to shock waves orthogonal to the injectant bow shock, that were generated at a frequency of 30 kHz. The primary data technique used, was a concentration probe which measured the molar concentration of helium in the flow field. Concentration data and other meanflow data was taken at several downstream axial stations and yielded contours of helium concentration, total pressure, Mach number, velocity, and mass flux, as well as the static properties. From these contour plots, the various mixing rates for each case were determined. The injectant mixing rates, expressed as the maximum concentration decay, and mixing distances were found to be unaffected by injector yaw, in the Mach 3.0 experiments, but were adversely affected by injector yaw in the Mach 6.0 experiments. One promising aspect of injector yaw was the that as the yaw angle was increased, lateral motion of the injectant plume became significant, and the turbulent mixing region area increased by approximately 34%. Comparisons of the 15° transverse angled injection into a Mach 6.0 flow to previous experiments with 15° injection into a Mach 3.0 freestream, demonstrated that there is a significant decrease in initial mixing, at Mach 6.0, resulting in a much longer mixing distance. From a parametric computational study of the Mach 6.0 experiments, the effects of adjacent injectors was found to decrease lateral spreading while increasing the vertical penetration of the injectant plume, and marginally increasing the injectant core decay rate. Matching of the computational results to the experimental results was best achieved when using the Baldwin-Lomax turbulence model without the Degani-Schiff modification.
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