Title

Laboratory exercises to study viscous boundary layers in the test section of an open-circuit wind tunnel

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2010

Publication Source

World Transactions on Engineering and Technology Education

Volume

8

Issue

1

Inclusive pages

91-96

Publisher

UNESCO * International Centre for Engineering Education

Place of Publication

Australia

ISBN/ISSN

1446-2257

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

Laboratory exercises presented here were designed and tested in the fluid mechanics laboratory so as to study viscous boundary layers in the test section of an open-circuit wind tunnel. These exercises create hands-on learning opportunities through which students gain practical experience with the highly abstract concepts of viscous boundary layers. They yield results very close to those in the published literature. The introduction reviews the concepts of thicknesses of the viscous boundary layer over a flat plate with zero pressure gradient when the boundary layer is laminar and when it is turbulent. Lab exercise 1 shows how to use a wind tunnel to determine the speed of the air through its test section. Lab exercise 2 shows how students can measure boundary-layer thicknesses in the test section of the wind tunnel. Results compare very well with those from boundary-layer theory.

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