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Experimental Investigation of a Turbulent Compressible Boundary Layer

[+] Author Affiliations
Todd Reedy

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL

Paper No. IMECE2009-12425, pp. 2205-2211; 7 pages
  • ASME 2009 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 9: Heat Transfer, Fluid Flows, and Thermal Systems, Parts A, B and C
  • Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA, November 13–19, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4382-6 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3863-1
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


A turbulent compressible boundary layer in a nominally Mach 4.2 flow was investigated experimentally. Pitot, wall-static pressure, total pressure and temperature measurements were utilized to determine Mach number, temperature, and velocity profiles within the boundary layer. An adverse pressure gradient was observed, resulting in non-uniform flow in the streamwise direction of the test section during development. Alterations were made to the tunnel top and bottom walls to account for the growing boundary layer displacement thickness, resulting in a much improved, uniform Mach number in the freestream and boundary layer. The existence of a slight adverse pressure gradient remained. Flow visualization was conducted via the Schlieren imaging technique. Experimental results were compared against turbulent compressible flow theory and were found to be in excellent agreement, based on an extension of the law-of-the-wall and law-of-the-wake. Velocity profiles and boundary layer thicknesses of the theoretical and experimental results aligned satisfactorily.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME



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