Designing and building a low cost laminar flow wind tunnel
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Designing and Building a Low-Cost, Laminar Flow Wind Tunnel. S. Clardy Henderson State University, Arkadelphia, AR. Motivation.

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Designing and Building a Low-Cost, Laminar Flow Wind Tunnel

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Designing and building a low cost laminar flow wind tunnel

Designing and Building a Low-Cost, Laminar Flow Wind Tunnel

S. ClardyHenderson State University, Arkadelphia, AR


Motivation

Motivation

  • The purpose of this study was to design and build a “small scale” wind tunnel (net length is approx. 20 ft – test chamber length is 3 ft) in which experimenters can reliably determine the turbulent effects from the wing itself versus effects created by the wind tunnel design and the medium used to view the turbulent flow.

  • Partnership in Light Sport Aircraft to study potential new wing designs to reduce vortices


Project constraints

Project Constraints

  • Cost

    • Designed to be built for under $5000

  • Facility Layout

    • Placed in a 6’x24’ room

    • Hallway considerations

Hallway

Wind Tunnel Room

Shop

Classroom


Open return vs closed return systems

Open return vs. Closed Return Systems


Open design with semi closed effects due to placement

Open Design with Semi-CloseD Effects Due to Placement

Hallway

Wind Tunnel Room

Shop

Classroom


Our windtunnel

Our Windtunnel


The nozzle

The Nozzle

  • Shape determined by 5th order Bell-Metha polynomials1

  • Y is the height, x is horizontal distance, L is the total axial length (4ft)

  • Using boundary condition

    • a= -7.5

    • b=18.75

    • c=-12.5

    • d=0

    • e=0

    • f=2

1. Justin Pereira, ed. Wind Tunnels: Aerodynamics, Models, and Experiments. Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2011, Ch 7.


The viewing chamber

The Viewing Chamber

  • 18”x18”x36”

  • ½” plexiglass

  • Center and wall mounting systems

  • Sample size: 14.4” across the chamber


The diffuser

The Diffuser


Material and construction decisions

Material and Construction Decisions

  • Nozzle

    • Fiberglass

    • Cast in 2 halves

    • Mold created from wood and foam

  • Diffuser

    • Fiberglass

    • Cast in 2 halves (length-wise)

    • Mold created from wood

    • Square outlet vs. round outlet


Thanks

Thanks!

  • Arkansas Space Grant Consortium

  • Ellis College Planning and Advisory Committee

  • HSU Physics

  • Student Collaborators:

    • Ross Pilgreen

    • Nathan Johnson

    • Jonathan Springer

    • Brian Terry

    • Matthew Bolt


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