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Design and Performance Analysis of a Supersonic Diffuser for Plasma Wing Tunnel

Authors: R.S Pugazenthi, Andy C. McIntosh


Plasma Wind Tunnels (PWT) are extensively used for screening and qualification of re-entry Thermel Protection System (TPS) materials. Proper design of a supersonic diffuser for plasma wind tunnel is of importance for achieving good pressurerecovery (thereby reducing vacuum pumping requirement & run time costs) and isolating downstream stream fluctuations from propagating costs) and isolating downstream stream fluctuationnts the details of a rapid design methodology successfully employed for designing supersonic diffuser for high power (several megawatts)plasma wind tunnels and numerical performance analysis of a diffuser configuration designed for one megawatt power rated plasma wind tunnel(enthalpy ~ 30 MJ/kg) using FLUENT 6.3® solver for different diffuser operating sub-atmospheric back-pressures.

Keywords: compressible flow, plasma wind tunnel, re-entry, supersonic diffuser

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

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