AE 3051, Lab #2
PRESSURE MEASUREMENTS AND FLOW VISUALIZATION IN SUBSONIC WIND TUNNELS
By: Robert Golas
Fall Semester 2012
Abstract The validity of theoretical surface pressure distribution, wake profiles, boundary layers, and streamline distribution were tested in this experiment. The surface pressure distribution coincided with theory and showed that increasing angle of attack increased the coefficient of lift on the airfoil. The wake profile distribution should show a decreased velocity behind the airfoil due to induced drag. The experimental data confirmed these expectations. The boundary layer profile was expected to follow a Blasius distribution showing turbulent flow at the specified location following the theory of incompressible flow across a flat plate and the experimental data confirmed this expectation. Streamlines are known to follow the profile of an airfoil at low angles of attack and then break off once stall is reached and this was also demonstrated experimentally. There was some uncertainty regarding the pressure measurements during the experiment. The 95% confidence interval had a range of ±0.615 mph when pressure was converted to velocity. The recorded data was within 1.8% of the expected data. The greatest source of error came from an offset static pressure tap which can be corrected simply by installing more taps at different locations.
Introduction For an airfoil immersed in a fluid medium such as air, the mechanical forces are transmitted at every point on the surface of the body through the pressure experienced by the airfoil. This pressure is the cause of the aerodynamic forces and is responsible for lift and drag on the airfoil. At low velocities, Bernoulli’s equation can be used to determine the velocity distribution, but when a boundary layer is present it becomes more difficult. This experiment was conducted in order to become more familiar with static and stagnation pressure and therefore velocity in a subsonic wind tunnel. Surface pressure distribution on a 2-D airfoil was determined using static taps and Pitot probes. The wake distribution was analyzed using a series of Pitot probe measurements aft of the airfoil. Boundary layer distribution along a wall was also tested using a similar technique. Finally, tufts and smoke were used in order to become familiar with flow visualization around and airfoil. Experimental Setup This experiment consisted of three separate individual experiments as well as observations made using flow visualization techniques. The first experiment looked at surface pressure distribution along a 2-D airfoil. The airfoil used in this experiment has a NACA 64-212 section. The chord is 14 inches and it has a thickness ratio of 14%. The two ends of the airfoil are connected to each wall of the wind tunnel and thus, it behaves like a wing of infinite span. Tufts are attached to the surface of the airfoil in order to visualize the flow. The airfoil also has a series of 24 static pressure taps, one at the trailing and leading edge of the airfoil with 11 both the top and bottom surfaces. These taps are located at midspan and are distributed in the chordwise direction. Each of these taps is connected via plastic tubing to a pressure transducer. A Pitotstatic probe located upstream of the airfoil is used to measure freestream dynamic pressure. This 2
is also connected to the pressure transducer via plastic tubing. There is also a static pressure tap mounted on the ceiling of the wind tunnel and connected in the same fashion. A Baratron capacitance transducer is used in order to measure freestream dynamic pressure. A Barocel capacitance transduced is used to measure the static and stagnation pressures. For the surface pressure distribution experiment, the 24 surface taps are connected to a Scanivalve which cycles through the different taps and takes a measurement for each. The Scanivalve and the static ceiling tap are both connected to the Barocel for the first experiment. A diagram of this setup can be seen in Figure 1. For the sake of simplicity, only one of the 24 output hoses from the airfoil is shown being connected to the Scanivalve.
Figure 1: Surface Pressure Distribution Setup Tubing Schematic
Now that everything is properly connected, the wind tunnel is turned on and the computer data acquisition software is run in order to record the data. The software takes 1000 samples at a rate of 10,000 samples per second and it calculates the average and root-mean-square (rms) of 3
the values and stores the result for a single pressure tap. It then sends a signal to the Scanivalve telling it move on to the next pressure tap and continues doing so until each of the 24 taps are measured. This experiment was conducted for a zero degree, nine degree, and fourteen degree angle of attack. After the first experiment is finished, the setup must be changed in order to carry out the Pitot probe experiments. The Scanivalve is disconnected from the Barocel and the Pitot probe is connected in its place. Everything else remains the same. The tubing schematic for this setup can be seen in Figure 2.
Figure 2: Pitot Probe Setup Tubing Schematic
Since the Pitot probe was already in the proper position, the wake was surveyed first. The airfoil was set to an angle of attack of 8 degrees. The data acquisition program was used to perform the wake survey. The required values of y were all pre-programmed (16 points in all), starting at a y=0 and extending 3 inches. The program was run at the same rate of 1000 samples at a rate of 10,000 samples per second. When the data acquisition was complete, the probe was returned to its initial position and the experiment was conducted again.
With the wake survey complete, the next step was to manually raise the Pitot probe until it was as close to the ceiling as possible. This was done by climbing on top of the wind tunnel and adjusting the location of a mechanical stop on the lead screw/Pitot probe system. This is the location the computer denoted as “y=0”. The distance remaining distance between the Pitot probe and the wall was measured and found to be 0.1875 inches. The data acquisition program was then used to traverse the probe and take data. A total of 16 unique distances from the ceiling were selected along with two repeat data points. After the probe was been moved to a new location away from the wall, denoted y, the software allows a short time for the pressure to settle out to evaluate the Pitot pressure. The same sample rate as the previous two experiments was used once again. To measure the repeatability of data, 18 measurements were then taken at the exact same y coordinate. The Pitot-static probe tubing schematic used in all of the experiments can be seen in Figure 3.
Figure 3: Pitot-static Probe Tubing Schematic
With the pressure experiments complete, the flow visualization experiment was conducted next. A low velocity (29 ft/s) smoke tunnel with various models was used for the experiment. Each individual model was mounted in the smoke tunnel, the smoke and lights were turned on, and then the flow was initiated. During each experiment, a series of observations as well as video 5
and picture records were recorded. While the model was in the smoke tunnel, the angle of attack and flap angle (when applicable) were changed and the resulting effects were noted. The models used were a cylinder, symmetric airfoil, an airfoil with a flap, a finite 3-D wing, and a 3-D wing tip. When the observations were complete, the equipment was returned to the off position. Results and Discussion Surface Pressure Distribution In the surface pressure distribution experiment, the data acquisition software recorded the difference between each static pressure tap (p) and the freestream static pressure (p∞), the freestream dynamic pressure (q∞), and the coordinate of the tap normalized by the chord length (x/c). From this data, the coefficient of pressure was found at each point using Equation (1). (1) The data was consolidated and reduced in an excel file. The data acquired was converted into a coefficient of pressure and the results for each angle of attack at each position can be seen in Table I. Table I: Coefficient of Pressure for Varying Angles of Attack at Each Position
0º Position Leading Edge Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface Upper Surface x/c 0 0.025 0.05 0.1 0.15 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 Cp 0.89156858 0.255354665 -0.047890065 -0.204723425 -0.276190843 -0.331333539 -0.401964032 -0.465413574 -0.325954611 -0.343333564 -0.303731885 Angle of Attack 9º Cp -1.091057573 -2.305275413 -1.798722421 -1.303989029 -1.10309008 -0.97356591 -0.841098127 -0.718082441 -0.336665378 -0.335154934 -0.150862256 14º Cp -2.894288918 -2.887781152 -2.3330692 -1.582067918 -1.174306242 -1.0289124 -0.718584716 -0.472608144 -0.216757738 -0.279491582 -0.282005915
Upper Surface Upper Surface Trailing Edge Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface Lower Surface
0.8 0.9 1 0.898 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0.025
-0.030413036 0.106785046 0.093007838 0.154333788 0.080322634 -0.229915594 -0.262451965 -0.325402565 -0.349536181 -0.398227397 -0.368058396 -0.411748988 -0.56659357
-0.038162716 0.126028253 0.028311497 0.291504851 0.231565155 0.190473956 0.1272016 0.126740684 0.184509941 0.265498299 0.425897055 0.659247232 1.129373302
-0.300218798 -0.115740588 -0.254812803 0.266989246 0.27140575 0.233152488 0.201451057 0.216769178 0.311836892 0.477983213 0.604986118 0.918111403 1.188647201
The flow was observed to laminar at zero and nine degrees but the tufts began to separate from the airfoil at fourteen degrees indicating that there was some boundary layer separation. A graph of the coefficient of pressure for the zero degree vs. nine degree angle of attack can be seen in Figure 4. A graph of the coefficient of pressure for the zero degree vs. fourteen degree angle of attack can be seen in Figure 5.
-2.5 -2 -1.5 -1 Cp -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 0 0.2 0.4
Cp vs. x/c
0 degrees 9 degrees
Figure 4: Cp vs. x/c for Zero and Nine Degree Angles of Attack
-3.5 -3 -2.5 -2 -1.5 Cp -1 0.2 0.4
Cp vs. x/c
0 degrees 0.6 0.8 1 14 degrees
-0.5 0 0 0.5 1 1.5
Figure 5: Cp vs. x/c for Zero and Fourteen Degree Angles of Attack
As expected, the zero degree angle of attack has a coefficient of pressure of approximately one at the leading edge which is a stagnation point and therefore should be the same as the freestream dynamic pressure. As indicated by Figure 4 and Figure 5, the location of this stagnation point should shift toward the trailing edge on the lower surface as the angle of attack is increased. The coefficient of pressure at the stagnation point is greater than one for both the nine and fourteen degree angles of attack which does not coincide with theory. This issue will be addressed in the supplemental questions section. Also as expected, the suction peak increases in amplitude as the angle of attack is increased. This coincides with a greater negative pressure associated with the upper surface of the airfoil. The coefficient of lift for an airfoil can be calculated by finding the area between the curves given by the upper and lower surfaces of the aircraft which is essentially the integral of the upper surface minus the integral of the lower surface from leading edge to trailing edge. Lift curves indicate that the coefficient of lift increases as angle of attack increases. As shown in Figure 4 and Figure 5, the area between the 8
curves increases as angle of attacking increases. This coincides with the expected increase in coefficient of lift. Wake Profile When an object is placed in a flowing fluid medium, it is expected that the object will impart some friction to the fluid as well as disturbing the flow which will cause the flow to lose velocity directly behind that object. With an airfoil this is equivalent to the drag experienced. There are skin friction losses and some of the energy used to impart the pressure differential that results in lift also causes the flow to slow down in the airfoil’s wake. There is also induced drag when a boundary layer separates from an airfoil known as pressure drag, but that is not the case in this experiment. The theoretical wake should be similar to what is seen in Figure 6.
Figure 6: Theoretical Wake Profile
Data was obtained using the software for two separate runs. Since both runs are extremely similar, the data and graphs shown are for the second run only. A comparison of the two runs will be made in the error analysis section. Since all the data obtained were pressure readings, they had to be converted to velocities using Equation (2). √
( ) ( )
The values for the room variables used in Equation (2) can found in Table II. Table II: Ambient Room Values
Parameter Proom Troom Value 29.26 72.05 Unit in. Hg ºF
A corrected value of the velocity also needed to be derived. This corrected value was found using Equation (3) (3) This value corrected for inconsistencies in the measurement process by multiplying the experimental velocity by the average experimental velocity and then dividing by the velocity found by applying Equation (2) to the freestream dynamic pressure that was recorded simultaneously. The reduced data can be found in Table III. The (q-q∞) value in Equation (2) is seen in Table III as Mean of DP and the freestream dynamic pressure is seen as Mean of qinf. Table III: Reduced Wake Data and Corresponding Velocities for Run 2
y (in.) 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 2 2.2 2.4 Mean of DP 1.2211 1.2213 1.1973 1.1759 1.1391 1.1099 1.0913 1.0769 1.0685 1.0767 1.0944 1.1144 1.1587 Mean of qinf 1.0706 1.0794 1.0686 1.0805 1.0581 1.0591 1.0654 1.0682 1.0743 1.0761 1.0663 1.0682 1.0627 uexperimental (mph) 37.35780842 37.36086765 36.99195348 36.65987419 36.08167588 35.61620978 35.31651592 35.08273665 34.94564319 35.07947875 35.36664126 35.68833827 36.3907728 usimultaneous (mph) 34.97996693 35.12343495 34.94727842 35.14132727 34.77515963 34.79158858 34.89491311 34.94073704 35.04036028 35.06970322 34.90964879 34.94073704 34.85066868 ucorrected (mph) 38.70902652 38.55406943 38.36579128 37.81142657 37.60692484 37.10425321 36.6830962 36.39248026 36.14720556 36.25528256 36.7196549 37.0206908 37.84690906
2.6 2.8 3
1.211 1.223 1.2235
1.0795 1.0717 1.0611
37.20299009 37.38686101 37.39450268
35.1250619 34.99793259 34.82442323
38.38937147 38.71924378 38.92011215
A graph of both the experimental and corrected velocities vs. the y coordinate can be found in Figure 7 and Figure 8 respectively.
uexperimental vs. y
3.5 3 2.5 y (in.) 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 34.5 35 35.5 36 36.5 37 37.5 38 Velocity (mph)
Figure 7: Experimental Velocity vs. y Coordinate for Run 2
ucorrected vs. y
3.5 3 2.5 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 36 36.5 37 37.5 38 38.5 39 39.5 Velocity (mph) y (in.)
Figure 8: Experimental Velocity vs. y Coordinate for Run 2
Both Figure 7 and Figure 8 show results that are similar to what is expected in Figure 6. Directly in the center of the airfoil is the lowest velocity which therefore is the point experiencing the most drag. As the probe traverses the wake, it goes from the freestream velocity and slowly decreases velocity until it reaches the point with the most drag and then slowly increases again until it no longer feels the effect of the airfoil and returns to freestream velocity. Boundary Layer Profile The analysis of the boundary layer profile is very similar to the analysis of the wake profile. Once again, Equation (2) was used in order to determine the velocity at each point, starting at the ceiling and ending at a point three inches from the ceiling. The same recorded values in Table II were also used in this part of the analysis. There is a slight initial offset of the Pitot probe. This offset is due to the fact that at the highest physical point (mechanically limited by the equipment), the probe was still 0.1875 inches (3/16 of an inch) away from the ceiling. The rest of the lab group may use a value of 0.3125 inches, but this value was recorded incorrectly in the lab notes. I still have the piece of paper used to measure this offset distance and upon measuring it again, I found the value to be 0.1875 inches. The Pitot probe itself also has an outer diameter of 0.028 inches. Therefore, the radius to the center of the probe is 0.014 inches. This yields a total initial offset of 0.2015 inches. The y coordinate was normalized by the y coordinate of the edge of the boundary layer. This point was determined by finding the y coordinate where the velocity started to remain at a relatively constant value. The velocity was then normalized by the corresponding velocity at this selected edge of the boundary layer. The values chosen for this point as well as the offset information can be found in Table IV.
Table IV: Boundary Layer Edge and Offset Information
δedge uedge initial offset pitot tube radius total offset 2.8015 35.50532818 0.1875 0.014 0.2015
All of the data was compiled into a table. The compiled data for the boundary layer can be found in Table V. The selected y coordinates can also be seen in Table V. The points selected represent the inner edge of the boundary layer closest to the ceiling, a few points in the middle to verify that the shape is correct, and then a cluster of points near the suspected edge of the boundary layer. Table V: Boundary Layer Profile Data
y (in.) 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 1 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 2 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 3 0.1 3 yactual (in.) 0.2015 0.3015 0.4015 0.5015 0.6015 1.2015 1.4015 1.6015 1.8015 2.0015 2.2015 2.8015 2.9015 3.0015 3.1015 3.2015 0.3015 3.2015 yactual/δedge 0.071925754 0.107620917 0.143316081 0.179011244 0.214706407 0.428877387 0.500267714 0.57165804 0.643048367 0.714438694 0.78582902 1 1.035695163 1.071390327 1.10708549 1.142780653 0.107620917 1.142780653 u (mph) 24.49078401 26.08397145 26.76305104 27.61221494 28.03326671 31.32755538 32.24798681 33.25990619 33.78495151 34.28196387 34.95872287 35.61139602 35.59534545 35.73474393 35.68833827 35.76032128 26.52713526 35.90067095 u/uedge 0.687723222 0.732461357 0.751530522 0.775375807 0.787199319 0.879705906 0.905552447 0.933968052 0.948711797 0.962668351 0.981672351 1 0.999549286 1.00346372 1.002160607 1.004181955 0.744905795 1.0081231
The normalized values from Table V are plotted in Figure 9 with yactual/δedge as the ordinate and u/uedge as the abscissa. For comparison, a theoretical boundary layer profile is shown in Figure 10.
Normalized y Coordinate vs Normalized Velocity
1.2 1 0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 0 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 u/uedge 0.8 1 1.2
Figure 9: Experimental Boundary Layer Profile
Figure 10: Theoretical Boundary Layer Profile
As shown Figure 9 and Figure 10, the experimental boundary layer profile closely coincides with the theoretical boundary layer profile. Figure 9 also shows that the velocities above the point chosen at the edge of the boundary layer stay relatively constant as expected. For the sake of accuracy, the group decided to repeat the boundary layer experiment to verify that the edge of the boundary layer was at the point selected and the repeated data verified that. Smoke Tunnel Visualizations The smoke visualization gave a much better understanding of how a flow reacts to a model placed in a fluid flow field. Each of the images shown are pictures taken during the experiment with extra flow lines drawn to better represent what was seen in the lab. Cylinder The cylinder was the first model analyzed. The flow observed looked like two alternating sine waves behind the cylinder. A sine wave was produced from the top surface of the cylinder and then a sine wave was produced from the bottom surface of the cylinder. These two would continuously oscillate and appeared to have a phase margin of approximately 180 degrees. Figure 11 shows the two alternating sine waves superimposed on top of each other
Figure 11: Appearance of the Two Superimposed Sine Waves 15
As shown in Figure 11, there appears to be a sink directly behind the cylinder where there is boundary layer separation. Figure 12 shows the wake of the cylinder with only one of the sinelike waves behind the cylinder.
Figure 12: Downstream Flow around a Cylinder
The group attempted to create an induced lift on the cylinder by rotating the cylinder while in the flow but physical limitations of the equipment would not allow the cylinder to be rotated fast enough to generate lift. Theoretically the flow around the cylinder should be completely uniform. The flow would divert as it reaches the cylinder and then reconvene in parallel streamlines after it passes the cylinder. This is due to the fact that mathematically there should be a net zero drag around the cylinder in an ideal inviscid flow. Realistically, the flow is viscous and regardless of how small the viscosity, the flow will acquire a small vorticity resulting in small boundary layer as it passes the cylinder. This results in boundary layer separation behind the cylinder due to induced pressure drag. The lower pressure on the trailing side of the cylinder results in drag downstream which therefore results in a wake behind the cylinder.
Symmetric Airfoil without Flap The symmetric airfoil without a flap was the next model analyzed. At approximately zero angle of attack, the airfoil performed as expected. The flow was laminar and followed the shape of the airfoil. The shape of the airfoil can be seen in each of the streamlines as the distance from the airfoil increases since the flow can essentially “feel” the airfoil. This can be seen in Figure 13.
Figure 13: Laminar Flow around a Symmetric Airfoil
At a small angle of attack, the streamlines can be seen following the profile of the airfoil creating lift and turning the flow. The initial effects of stall can also be seen at this angle of attack. This can be seen in Figure 14.
Figure 14: Flow around a Symmetric Airfoil at Small Angle of Attack
Finally, at high angles of attack, full stall can be observed. This is characterized by full flow separation from the airfoil. A visual representation can be seen in Figure 15.
Figure 15: Flow Separation and Stall of a Symmetric Airfoil at High Angle of Attack
Airfoil with Flap The airfoil with a flap model was placed in the smoke tunnel and set at a moderate angle of attack. In this configuration, the airfoil performed similar to the symmetric airfoil at a small angle of attack. The flow was relatively laminar and followed the profile of the airfoil which can be seen in Figure 16.
Figure 16: Airfoil with a Zero Flap Angle at Moderate Angle of Attack
As the flap angle is increased, the flow follows the flap and is turned. Changing the flap angle essentially increased the camber of the airfoil causing an increase in lift. This also shifts 18
the lift curve left which therefore decreases the stall angle. At a moderate flap angle as shown in Figure 17, the flow begins to turn but it also begins separating more from the airfoil which will eventually lead to stall.
Figure 17: Airfoil with a Moderate Flap Angle at Moderate Angle of Attack
At a high flap angle of approximately 45 degrees, the airfoil mimics a highly cambered airfoil which greatly shifts the lift curve left. This shift causes boundary layer separation and therefore leads to stall. The flow separation can be seen in Figure 18.
Figure 18: Airfoil with a Large Flap Angle at Moderate Angle of Attack
3-D Wing Tip and Finite Wing The 3-D wing tip and finite wing models both displayed tip vortices. When the wing generates lift, the upper surface has a lower pressure than the lower surface. As the air flows from below the wing out and around the tip to the top of the wing in a circular fashion, vortices are formed which feature a low pressure core. An example of the tip vortex is shown in Figure 19.
Figure 19: Wing Tip Vortex Formation
This vortex formation is exacerbated by higher angles of attack as shown if Figure 20.
Figure 20: Wing Tip Vortex Formation at a High Angle of Attack
The finite wing shows the formation of vortices on each wing tip as well as the downwash wake caused by the wing. This wake remains for quite a long time and is the source of wake turbulence. The two vortices will never meet and combine since they are rotating in opposite directions. The model of the finite wing vortex is referred to as a horseshoe vortex due 20
to its similar shape. A representation of the horseshoe vortex behind a finite wing can be seen in Figure 21.
Figure 21: Horseshoe Vortex behind a Finite Wing at Moderate Angle of Attack
Supplemental Questions Based on the Blasius Solution for incompressible flow over a flat plate found in Fundamentals of Aerodynamics, Fourth Edition by John D. Anderson Jr., Equation (4) is the equation used to find the local Reynolds number. ( ) (4)
In this equation represents the distance from the beginning of the flat plate and δ is the thickness of the boundary layer. Using δedge from Table IV as the thickness of the boundary layer, the Reynolds number was calculated over a range of x values as shown in Table VI. Table VI: Reynolds Numbers for a Range of Flat Plate Lengths
x (in.) 240 300 360 x (ft.) 20 25 30 Rex 183477 286683 412823
420 480 540
35 40 45
561898 733907 928851
Though the length of the flat plate from the start of the wind tunnel to the location of the Pitot probe was not measured, I estimated the length to be approximately 35 feet if not greater. From theory, turbulent flow begins to occur with a Reynolds number around 5x105. The length corresponding to this Reynolds number is 33 feet. Therefore a length greater than this value indicates turbulent flow and a length less than this value indicates laminar flow. For the approximated length of the flat plate from the start of the wind tunnel to the Pitot probe, this equation shows that turbulent flow is occurring at this location. Figure 22 shows a comparison of turbulent and laminar boundary layers.
Figure 22: Turbulent vs. Laminar Boundary Layers
Accordingly, the experimental data shown in Figure 9 matches that of a turbulent boundary layer. When performing a curve fit using the data acquisition software, the data points matched a Blausis boundary layer fit much better than a laminar boundary layer fit as well. As Equation (4) shows, the Reynolds number with the length of the flat plate. Due to this, the boundary layer effects increase the further down the wind tunnel the flow gets. This 22
difference in the boundary layer can cause small changes in the static pressure tap readings depending on where it is located. If the static pressure tap is not exactly where the experiment is taking place, there may be a small difference between the static pressure at the actual location of the tap and the static pressure at the location of the experiment. The data gathered does indicate that there is error introduced due to this difference in location. By looking at Figure 4 and Figure 5, it is obvious that the coefficient of pressure for the higher angles of attack reaches a value greater than one. For incompressible flow, this should be impossible since the maximum static pressure experienced by the airfoil should be the static pressure of the freestream. Since the static pressure of the freestream is being recorded at a location other than exactly where the airfoil is located, there is a discrepancy between the two values which yields a pressure coefficient greater than one. Conclusions This purpose of this experiment was to become more familiar with static and stagnation pressure and therefore velocity in a subsonic wind tunnel and to confirm that theoretical flow matches actual fluid flow. Surface pressure distribution on a 2-D airfoil was measured using static taps and Pitot probes. The data showed that increasing angle of attack caused an increased in the pressure differential across the airfoil therefore increasing the lift coefficient. Theory states that increasing angle of attack will increase lift which was confirmed experimentally. Since the static freestream pressure tap is not located at the exact same location where the surface pressure experiment was conducted, some of the pressure coefficients reached values greater than one. Relocating this pressure tap would more than likely remedy this error. Theory also indicates that drag in the wake of an airfoil slows the flow of the fluid around it. The wake distribution was analyzed using a series of Pitot probe measurements aft of the airfoil. The results showed that the 23
flow velocity indeed slows behind an airfoil due to pressure drag and surface friction drag. Incompressible flow flat plate theory shows that after a certain distance, the boundary layer begins to separate from the plate which causes turbulent flow. By traversing the boundary layer with a Pitot probe, a boundary layer profile was developed which matched a typical Blausis boundary layer curve. Repeated measurements at a point beyond the boundary layer indicated that the Pitot probe is both accurate and precise. Aerodynamic theory has also described how a fluid should flow around a different assortment of models. By using a smoke tunnel and making careful observations, these theoretical streamlines were also confirmed. By comparing these different theoretical models with experimental data in this experiment, the theories have been reinforced and confirmed to be accurate.
Appendix: Error Analysis Pressure Error During any experiment there is bound to be issues with repeatability, accuracy and precision of the equipment being used. The largest source of error in this series of experiments was consistency in measuring the pressure in the wind tunnel. These pressure measurements were also used to calculate the velocities which were therefore also not extremely reliable. During the boundary layer profile analysis, a data run was completed in which the y coordinate was held constant at 3.0015 inches and a series of 18 separate measurements were recorded. The recorded data can be found in Table VII .
Table VII: Repeated Pressure Measurements at 3.0015 inches
Mean of DP 1.1368 1.1137 1.0983 1.1169 1.1127 1.0994 1.1203 1.1218 1.1195 1.1233 1.1071 1.1063 1.1068 1.112 1.1061 1.1016 1.1109 1.1097 Mean of qinf 1.0837 1.0601 1.0477 1.0603 1.0597 1.0529 1.0631 1.0705 1.0692 1.0723 1.0552 1.062 1.0552 1.0591 1.0535 1.0538 1.0586 1.0576 Velocity (mph) 36.04523053 35.67712786 35.42960144 35.72834673 35.66110688 35.44733922 35.78268646 35.80663365 35.76990807 35.83056483 35.57125602 35.55840165 35.56643617 35.6498879 35.55518733 35.48278818 35.63225095 35.61300068
Using this data, a graph of the normal/Gaussian probability distribution was created. That graph can be seen in Figure 23.
Normal/Gaussian Probability Distribution of Freestream Velocities 3
Figure 23: Probability Distribution of the Repeated Pressure Measurements 25
The precise values determined from the distribution are shown in Table VIII Table VIII: Probability Distribution Values
Mean Sigma One Sigma Range Two Sigma Range 35.65598636 0.153687027 ±0.30737 ±0.61475
When the pressure measurements were originally taken while traversing the boundary layer, the final two measurements were repeat measurements of points that were already measured; one was beyond the boundary layer edge and one was at the wall. The measurement at the wall had a variation of 0.44 while the measurement in the freestream had a variation of 0.14. These are both well within the 96% confidence range that was expected. As mentioned earlier, two runs were completed while surveying the wake profile. The corrected velocity for each run can be seen on the same graph in Figure 24.
ucorrected vs. y
3.5 3 2.5 y (in.) 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 36 36.5 37 37.5 38 38.5 39 39.5 Velocity (mph) run 2 run 1
Figure 24: Wake Profile Comparison of Two Separate Runs
As Figure 24 indicates, both runs were extremely close and never varied outside of the two sigma range in comparison to each other. Figure 24 also shows, however, that the freestream velocity is at approximately 39 mph which is 3.5 mph faster than the mean found in the boundary layer test. While the instruments are definitely precise, there may be accuracy issues associated with the Pitot probe. The boundary layer data may have some residual turbulent effects that are still slowing down the flow. This could explain the higher velocity toward the center of the wind tunnel. There may also be an unaccounted variable affecting the wake data. Since the wind tunnel velocity is set to 35 mph and the Pitot probe at the boundary layer edge consistently measured a value around 35.5 mph, something may be increasing the flow velocity in the center of the tunnel. In the supplemental questions section, the problem with the placement of the static freestream pressure tap was discussed. This is the largest source of error found in the experiment. The pressure coefficient reached a maximum value of 1.18 which is very far past the theoretical maximum pressure coefficient of one. These are all measuring errors that can be corrected. The pressure readings at 0.3 and 0.3 as the x/c coordinate on the airfoil also ran consistently high in each data run. This may be caused the pressure taps not being completely perpendicular to the surface of the airfoil or it may just be the effect of an unaccounted for variable in the experiment. In order to correct these pressure reading errors, there are a few changes that could remedy the situation. A series of freestream static pressure taps can be installed in the ceiling of the wind tunnel at various distances from the beginning of the wind tunnel. With this setup, the pressure tap that corresponds with the location of the experiment can be selected, therefore giving more accurate data. An experiment similar to the boundary layer test that traverses the entire tunnel may also provide a more accurate representation the actual flow in the wind tunnel. The fan itself
may also provide some error if the fan blades are not all identical and there is an uneven flow imparted to the wind tunnel. The voltage controller for the fan also fluctuates throughout the experiment. Since the wind tunnel was set to 35 mph and the mean velocity was 35.656 mph there is an uncertainty of 1.87%