The objective of this work was to study the steering effect of a weakly ionized plasma on a supersonic flow structure in a two-dimensional aerodynamic configuration with a three-shock compression ramp in an off-design operational mode. Experiments were performed in wind tunnel T-313 of ITAM SB RAS, with the model air inlet designed for operation at a flow of Mach number M = 2. The inlet was tested at M = 2, 2.5, and 3 and with Re = (25–36) × 106/m and an angle of attack AoA = 0°, 5°, and 8°. For the regulation of the inlet characteristics, a plasma generator with electrical power W pl = 2–10 kW was flush-mounted upstream of the compression ramp. A significant plasma effect on the shock configuration at the inlet and on the flow parameters after air compression is considered. It is shown that the main shock wave angle is controllable by means of the plasma power magnitude and, therefore, can be accurately adjusted to the cowl lip of an inlet with a fixed geometry. An additional plasma effect has been demonstrated through a notable increase in the pressure recovery coefficient in a flowpass extension behind the inlet because of an nearly isentropic pattern of flow compression with the plasma turned on. Numerical simulation brings out the details of 3D distribution of the flow structure and parameters throughout the model at thermal energy deposition in inlet near the compression surfaces. We conclude that the plasma-based technique may be a feasible method for expanding supersonic inlet operational limits.
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 3, 2015
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