Faculté des Sciences appliquées
Faculté des Sciences appliquées

Optimization of a Wind Tunnel Settling Chamber: Experimental and Computational Analysis

Flores Urzua, Katherine Irene ULiège
Promotor(s) : Andrianne, Thomas ULiège
Date of defense : 27-Jun-2016/28-Jun-2016 • Permalink :
Title : Optimization of a Wind Tunnel Settling Chamber: Experimental and Computational Analysis
Author : Flores Urzua, Katherine Irene ULiège
Date of defense  : 27-Jun-2016/28-Jun-2016
Advisor(s) : Andrianne, Thomas ULiège
Committee's member(s) : Terrapon, Vincent ULiège
Gilet, Tristan ULiège
Meyer, Oliver 
Tinapp, Frank 
Language : English
Number of pages : 91
Keywords : [en] Subsonic wind tunnel
[en] Settling chamber
[en] Wide angle diffuser
[en] Pressure loss coefficient
Discipline(s) : Engineering, computing & technology > Aerospace & aeronautics engineering
Funders : aem GmbH
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master en ingénieur civil en aérospatiale, à finalité approfondie
Faculty: Master thesis of the Faculté des Sciences appliquées


[en] Pressure loss reduction by the use of different arrangement of manipulators was studied for an existing wind tunnel. The analysis is concentrated on the settling chamber and the wide angle diffuser which is where the four screens and the honeycomb are located. The analysis is carried out in three phases. The first is to evaluate the current state of the wind tunnel through experimental measurements. The second concerns the numerical study of the zone of interest. The third phase analyzes the optimization of the manipulator arrangement in order to improve the efficiency of the wind tunnel. The simulations are implemented in Ansys CFX with the turbulence model k-$\omega$ SST. A grid with 3 million elements is selected. At the inlet the Dirichlet boundary condition and at the outlet the Neumann boundary condition were imposed. The behavior of the flow through the manipulators is simulated with the porous momentum loss model which is implemented in the software.
The measurements show differences in the flow quality of the wind tunnel, which were not predicted by the simulations. Therefore, the simulation is taken as a reference for the optimization phase. The optimization involves ten proposed designs, where the screens and the honeycomb were replaced. It is found that the best compromise between preserved turbulence intensity and reduced pressure losses is observed in case 6 where one of the screens is left out. Therefore, the improvement of the quality of the flow by an additional screen is possible. This configuration reduces the turbulence intensity by 2.81 % and the pressure losses by 13 % in the simulated domain. This corresponds to a decrease of 4.5 % of the pressure loss in the complete wind tunnel.



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  • Flores Urzua, Katherine Irene ULiège Université de Liège > Master ingé. civ. aérospat., à fin., fin. appr. (ex 2e ma.)


Committee's member(s)

  • Terrapon, Vincent ULiège Université de Liège - ULg > Département d'aérospatiale et mécanique > Modélisation et contrôle des écoulements turbulents
    ORBi View his publications on ORBi
  • Gilet, Tristan ULiège Université de Liège - ULg > Département d'aérospatiale et mécanique > Microfluidique
    ORBi View his publications on ORBi
  • Meyer, Oliver Aem GmbH, Maria-Probst-Strasse, 3, D-80939 München, Germany
  • Tinapp, Frank Universidad de Concepcion, Edmundo Larenas s/n, Casilla 160-C, Concepcion, Chile > Departamento de Ingeniera Mecanica
  • Total number of views 17
  • Total number of downloads 0

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