2012 BFY Abstract Detail Page

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Abstract Title: W22 - Fluid Diagnostics: Compressible Flow and Shock Waves in a Benchtop Blowdown Tunnel
Abstract: At Bethel University, fluid mechanics is integrated into the physics curriculum as a required component in the Applied Physics major option. Although the fluid mechanics course is not required for students pursuing other physics major options, most of these students take the course as an elective. Open-ended advanced lab projects are key components of the fluid mechanics course, as is the case in the upper level Optics, Contemporary Optics (i.e. lasers), Electronics and Computer Methods in Physics courses.

In this workshop, we demonstrate the operation of a small supersonic blowdown tunnel (please see figure) that was initially constructed as part of a fall 2010 project in our fluid mechanics course. Following the initial construction and testing of the apparatus, subsequent student research projects have included high-speed video (HSV) shadowgraph imaging and the development of a MATLAB GUI for side-by-side comparisons between simulation and ongoing experiments with the tunnel [1-2]. HSV imaging of the flow in the tunnel was highlighted as a 2011 ALPhA laboratory immersion workshop at Bethel University [3]. Ongoing student project work is supported to further characterize the flow in the tunnel and to assess the 1D isentropic flow assumption for our numerical simulations. Details will be presented on the design, construction, operation and ongoing project objectives with the blowdown tunnel.

1. K. Stein, J. Schommer, and B. Heppner, "Undergraduate Studies on Compressible Flows and Shock Waves," American Physical Society March Meeting 2012, Boston.
2. J. Schommer, K. Stein, and B. Heppner, "Graphical User Interface for Supersonic Flow and Shock Waves in a Converging-Diverging Nozzle," submitted for American Physical Society March Meeting 2012, Boston.
3. "Imaging of Shock Waves in Compressible Flows," Advanced Lab Physics Association (ALPhA) Laboratory Immersion, Bethel University, July 20-22, 2011.
Abstract Type: Workshop

Workshop Documents

Workshop Document: Download the Workshop Document

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Keith Stein
Bethel University