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Aerospace Definition wind tunnel blockage ratio

  1. Apr 18, 2012 #1
    Hello,
    I’m designing a 2D wind tunnel model for my master thesis. It will be a profile equipped with a fixed hinged trailing edge flap. I’m going to measure at different angle of attacks and different flap settings at low speeds (about 70 to 100 m/s). The aim is to measure steady and unsteady pressure distributions. To calculate the maximum scale of the model I have to consider the maximum blockage ratio of 5% - 10% (which I found in the public literature).
    My question is no which area of the model do I have to set in relation of the wind tunnel cross section area? Is it the in x-axis projected frontal area of the model (considering the angle of attack and the flap deflection) or is it the maximum thickness of the airfoil times model span?
    The wind tunnel will has a closed test section and doesn’t have slotted walls.
    I’m looking forward to your comments!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 18, 2012 #2

    boneh3ad

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    Total frontal area of the test article. You are trying to express how much of the wind tunnel is actually free to pass through when traveling past the article.
     
  4. Apr 18, 2012 #3
    Why? Maybe you can explain your opinion in detail. What effect would happen to my results (such as pressure distribution) if I would build a too big model?
     
  5. Apr 18, 2012 #4

    boneh3ad

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    Pressures would be low if you build too big. Using too large of a model essentially creates a pair of Venturi nozzles. Keeping blockage small keeps the flow from feeling the effects of the walls.

    Also, I blockage is too high, some wind tunnels have trouble starting.
     
  6. Apr 22, 2012 #5
    Just to add to what bonehead said. There are corrections you can apply to your data for blockage effects and other tunnel wall effects such as streamline curvature as long as your model is not too big. If the model is too big the tunnel walls can qualitatively change the flow over your model in which case you can't correct for that.

    You should check out "low speed wind tunnel testing" by pope if you are unfamiliar with these things.
     
  7. Apr 23, 2012 #6
    Thank you for your replies. I have the book from Alan Pope right here on my desk. I’m going to use these correction factors for solid- & wake blockage as well as streamline curvature. The Question is how big can I build the model considering the correction factors? Regarding the Blockage Ratio Pope says that it is the “frontal area” of the model in relation to the cross sectional area of the tunnel. For me it was not indisputable what he meant with “frontal area”.
     
  8. Apr 23, 2012 #7

    boneh3ad

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    It means take a perpindicular slice through your test section and then project your model onto that. The area on that plane is your frontal area.
     
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