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Proceedings of ICTACEM 2017

International Conference on Theoretical, Applied, Computational and Experimental Mechanics


December 28-30, 2017, IIT Kharagpur, India
ICTACEM-2017/498

Comparison of Single Hole, Two Hole and Four Hole Probes for
Three-Dimensional Flow Measurements

N. Sitaram* M. Suresh
School of Aeronautical Sciences Turbomachines Laboratory
Hindustan Institute of Technology and Science Department of Mechanical Engineering
1, Rajiv Gandhi Salai (OMR), Padur, (Via) Indian Institute of Technology Madras
Kelambakkam, CHENNAI - 603 103, India CHENNAI - 600 03, India

ABSTRACT
The present paper compares the calibration curves and sensitivity curves of calibration coefficients of a four hole
probe, two-hole probe and single hole probe for three dimensional flow measurements. A 2.54 mm hemispherical
cantilever probe is calibrated in the yaw and pitch angle range of -60O to 60O and -50O to 30O at an interval of 5O.
This calibration data is used to calculate calibration coefficients and sensitivity curves of calibration coefficients for
the four hole, two-hole and single hole probes. From these curves best probe configuration is identified for three
dimensional flow measurements.
Keywords: Four hole probe, Two hole probe, Single hole probe, Non-nulling calibration, 3D flow measurements

NOMENCLATURE

CPPITCH Pitch coefficient (Defined in text) PC, PL, PR, PB Non dimensional pressures of the probe holes
CPSTATIC Static pressure coefficient and PT identified as center, left, right, bottom and top holes
(Defined in text) of a conventional five hole probe, Pa
CPTOTAL Total pressure coefficient (Defined P1, P2, P3 and P4 Pressures measured by probe holes 1 to 4, Pa
in text) p1, p2, p3 and p4 Pressures measured by probe holes 1 to 4, non-
CPYAW Yaw coefficient (Defined in text) dimensionalized with PO
Probe dynamic pressure, Pa Q Dynamic pressure=PO-PS=PO(Q→PO as PS→0), Pa
D (Defined in text) Yaw angle, Deg.

PO Total pressure, Pa
 Pitch angle, Deg.
PS Static pressure, Pa
Cpi Sensitivity coefficient of calibration coefficient
Pk Maximum pressure, Pa

1. INTRODUCTION

Multi hole (4 hole, 5 hole, 7 hole) pressure probes are extensively used to measure three
dimensional flows in turbomachinery and other aerodynamic flows. In principle a four hole
probe can measure the four unknowns, namely, total and static pressures and two angles in two
mutually perpendicular planes in an incompressible flow. From these four parameters, velocity
and its three components can be determined. For measurements in compressible flows, a
thermocouple is added to the probe tip to measure temperature.
____________________________________________
* Corresponding author, E_mail: pt.nsitaram@hindustanuniv.ac.in

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From these measurements, the unknown flow parameters namely, temperature, total and static
pressures, density and two angles in two mutually perpendicular planes are obtained. From these
parameters, Mach number, velocity and its three components can be determined. For
measurement of time dependent flows, fast response pressure transducers are embedded in the
probe tip or located in the connected tubes with some loss in frequency response. An alternative
to multi hole probes is a single hole probe, which is used in multiple positions to measure three
dimensional flow. The advantage of the single hole probe technique is reduced size of the probe
reducing spatial, gradient and wall vicinity errors. The disadvantages are increased data
acquisition time and complex data reduction techniques. Although multi hole probes and single
hole probes are used by many researchers to measure complex three dimensional flows, no
systematic investigations are made on the accuracy of measurements by these techniques. Hence
the present investigation is undertaken.

2. MOTIVATION AND OBJECTIVE

Schlienger (1) developed a cantilevered hemispherical four hole probe of 1.2 mm diameter. The
probe was calibrated in yaw and pitch angle range of + 20O and + 18O respectively. Suresh and
Sitaram (2) extended the calibration range of a similar probe to + 60O and -50O to 30O in yaw
and pitch plane respectively. Schlienger (1) also developed cantilevered hemispherical single
hole probes of 1.8 mm diameter of two different designs, namely V4S (Virtual Four Sensor) and
V5S (Virtual Five Sensor) probes. A fast response pressure transducer is embedded in this probe
to obtain time variant pressures, velocities and angles. These probes are to be used in multiple
positions to obtain three dimensional flow measurements. The probe, V4S uses two probes of
similar geometry, one at a tap angle of 0O and other at a tap angle of -30O. The probe with tap
angle of 0O is used in three positions and the probe with tap angle of -30O is used one position.
These positions correspond to centre, left, right and bottom holes of a cantilevered hemispherical
four hole probe. Using the pressures measured from these two probes, flow field of a three
dimensional flow can be determined. The probe, V5S uses one probe of hemispherical
cantilevered design with a tap angle of 0O. The probe is used at five yaw angles, 0, + 18O and +
48O corresponding to centre, left, right and bottom holes of a five hole probe. These probes and
measurement methods are described in detail in Pfau et al. (3) and Schlienger et al. (4)
respectively. The V4S probe is further modified by including a second sensor sensitive of pitch
angle variation of the flow on the inclined surface of the probe head by Porreca et al. (5). This
probe is named 2S-FRAP (Two Sensor Fast Response Aerodynamic Probe). Limited

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comparison is made for the measurement accuracies of the three probes. Hence there is a need to
make a comprehensive comparison of the performance of these probes. Suresh and Sitaram (2)
had calibrated cantilevered hemispherical four hole probe of 2.54 mm diameter in the calibration
range of + 60O and -50O to 30O in yaw and pitch plane respectively. The calibration data of this
probe is utilised to use it as a four hole probe, a two hole probe in three positions (similar to the
virtual four hole probe, V4S) and a single hole probe in five positions (similar to the virtual five
hole probe, V5S) to determine their strengths and weaknesses, application range and
applications. This is the objective of the present paper.

3. DESIGN AND CALIBRATION DETAILS OF THE PROBE

The four-hole probe used in the present investigation is fabricated using a stainless steel tube of 2.54
mm diameter to which a probe head of 2.54 mm diameter and 8 mm length is silver brazed. Figure 1
shows the three orthogonal views of the probe head. The design and fabrication details of the probe
were described in detail in Suresh and Sitaram (2) and are not given here for the sake of brevity.
4
ho

3h
le
s
15

ole
di

s
R1.

dia
0.

27 A
0.4 1.
3

B
5 R
P2 .8
R0
50°

C P2 C
R 0.5
P4
P1
P4 P1
50°

P3 P3
0.514 0.
3 B
A
0.5
Section A-A 8
Section B-B 6.74
R 6.44
1.2 4
7

dia 2.54
dia 2.3
Four hole probe head (2.54 mm, 0.1 " Dia.)
Material: Stainless Steel
All dimensions in mm
Scale 10:1
0.3
0.
2

45° 0.884
Probe Head Section C-C

Figure 1. Orthogonal views of the four-hole pressure probe head and schematic of the probe (From Suresh and Sitaram, 2016)

The four-hole probe was calibrated in an open-jet, low speed calibration tunnel facility (100 mm
nozzle exit diameter) of Turbomachines Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT
Madras at a velocity of 60 m/s in the yaw and pitch angle range of -60O to 60O and -50O to 30O at
an interval of 5O. The details of the calibration tunnel and calibration method were described in detail
in Suresh and Sitaram (2) and are not given here for the sake of brevity. The paper also presents
sample calibration data to verify the data obtained is correct and follows the expected trends.
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4. DEFINITION OF CALIBRATION COEFFICIENTS OF ONE, TWO AND FOUR
HOLE PROBES

The calibration data of the probe are used in the following modes:

1 Four hole probe using all holes, (similar to the method of Schlienger, 1 and Suresh and
Sitaram, 2).
2 Two hole probe using the bottom and center holes (similar to virtual the four hole probe of
Pfau et al., 4).
3 Single hole probe using the center hole, (similar to virtual the five hole probe of Schlienger
et al., 3).

The definition of the calibration coefficients for the three probes is presented in Table 1 given
below. For each of the probe, the pressures corresponding to centre, left, right, bottom and top (PC,
PL, PR, PB and PT) holes as used in a five hole probe are identified from the measured pressures,
P1, P2, P3 and P4 corresponding to the centre, left, right and bottom holes of the four hole probe.
This approach is taken instead of using different probes, to avoid the effect of fabrication
inaccuracies on the comparison of the probe performance. The definition for the calibration
coefficients of the single hole probe differ from those of V5S probe in the following ways:
1 For V5S probe, peak pressure, Pk instead of PC is used in the definition of calibration
coefficients. The value of Pk is obtained by curve fitting PC vs. . For the single hole probe, the
value of PC is used in the definition of calibration coefficients. It is found from the curve fitting
that the value of Pk is almost equal to the value of PC and occurs close to zero yaw angle.

2 The single hole probe is used at five yaw angles, 0, + 15O and + 45O instead of at five yaw
angles, 0, + 18O and + 48O used by the V5S probe, corresponding to centre, left, right and
bottom holes of a five hole probe. The probe is calibrated at a yaw angle interval of 5O.
Hence the pressure data at the five yaw angles, 0, + 15O and + 45O is chosen for the
definition of calibration coefficients.

Further the shape of the head of the two hole probe is hemispherical instead of a 45O slanted
shape of the of 2SFRAP. This shape has the advantage of reduced distance of 0.884 mm (0.35
times the probe head diameter) between the two holes for the probe head of 2.54 mm diameter
compared to 2.2 mm (1.22 times the probe head diameter) distance between the two sensors of
2SFRAP of 1.8 mm diameter probe head. Hence the two hole probe has reduced spatial errors.
This is very important in highly sheared flows such as boundary layers. Schlienger (1) used a
semi elliptical head with major to minor axes of 2 for the four hole probe, whereas the present
four hole probe has hemi spherical head. The distance between the centre and pitch holes is 1
mm (0.63 times the probe head diameter) for a probe head of 1.2 mm diameter.

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Table 1 Definition of calibration coefficients
Probe Model Four Hole Probe Two Hole Probe Single Hole Probe
PC P1 P1 P1
PL P2 P1 (-40O) P1 (-45O)
PR P3 P1 (+40O) P1 (+45O)
PB P4 P4 P1 (-20O)
PT - - P1 (+20O)
D PC-(PL+PR)/2 PC-(PL+PR)/2 -
Q PO PO PO
CPYAW (PL-PR)/D (PL-PR)/D (PL-PR)/[PC-(PL+PR)/2]
CPPITCH (PC-PB)/D (PC-PB)/D [PC-(PL+PR)/2]/[PC-(PB+PT)/2]
CPSTATIC [(PL+PR)/2-PS]/Q=(PL+PR)/2PO [(PL+PR)/2-PS]/Q=(PL+PR)/2PO PO/[PC-(PL+PR)/2]
CPTOTAL (PO-PC)/Q=1-PC/PO (PO-PC)/Q=1-PC/PO (PO-PC)/[PC-(PL+PR) /2]

5. COMPARISON OF CALIBRATION CURVES OF ONE, TWO AND FOUR


HOLE PROBES

The calibration curves for the three probes are presented in Figs. 2 to 4. They are presented as
follows for the four hole and two hole probes:

1 CPPITCH vs. CPYAW curves for various values of yaw and pitch angles. The calibration curves
are presented in intervals of 10O instead of 5O for the sake of clarity.

2 Contours of CPTOTAL and CPSTATIC with CPPITCH and CPYAW on X and Y-axes.

For the four and two hole probes, the yaw and pitch angle ranges are + 20O and -50O to 30O. For the
four hole probe, calibration curves in the extended yaw angle range of + 60O by Suresh and Sitaram
(2) using zonal method. While it is possible to extend the yaw angle for the two hole probe, it is
not attempted here as the calibration of the probe was carried out in the yaw angle range of + 60O
only. The data upto + 60O are required to generate calibration coefficients upto + 20O. Furthermore
the probe can always rotated so that the yaw angle to be measured is within + 15O.
2
o
CPTOTAL CPSTATIC
o =-20o 20
 =30 o
0.6 -0.2
-10 0o -10
o
o
20 -0.3
-0.4
CPPITCH

0.5 0.4
o
10 -0.6 -0.5
o
o
10 0.3
0 0.2 0.1 -0.5
o
-10 0.2
o -0.5
0 -20
o 0.2 -0.4
-30 0.3
0.4
o 0.5 -0.3
-40 0.6
0.7
o
-50

-2
-2 0 -2 0 -2 0 2
CPYAW
Figure 2. Calibration curves of four-hole probe (Modified from Suresh and Sitaram, 2016)

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O
==-20O -20 CPTOTAL 0.7
CPSTATIC
2 O
-0.04
30
O
O O 10 0.6
O -10 0
20
-0.08
-0.08
CPPITCH
O
10 0.2 -0.08
O -0.04
0 0.1
O 0.3 0.04
-10
0 -20
O 0.12
O
-30
0.08
O 0.4 0.00
-40 0.2 0.5

O
0.7 -0.08 -0.08
-50
-2 0.8
-2 0 2 -2 0
CPYAW 2 -2 0 2

Figure 3. Calibration curves of the two-hole probe

For the single hole probe, the calibration curves are presented as follows:

Contours of CPTOTAL, CPSTATIC, CPPITCH and CPYAW with yaw and pitch angles on X and Y-axes.
The yaw and pitch angle ranges are + 15O and -50O to 30O respectively. While it is possible to
extend the yaw angle for the two hole probe, it is not attempted here as the calibration of the
probe was carried out in the yaw angle range of + 60O only. Furthermore the probe can always
rotated so that the yaw angle to be measured is within + 15O.

-1.0 -0.7-0.4-0.1 0.2 0.5 0.8 1.1 1.4 1.7 4.0 4.2 4.4 4.6 4.8 5.0 5.2 5.4 5.6 5.8 0.8 1.0 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 2.0 2.2 2.4 2.6 0.0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.2 1.4 1.6 1.8 2.0
30
1.6 1.6 0.8 1.0
4.2 1.8
4.4 1.4
4.2 0.8
0.8 1.2
4.0 0.6

0.4
10 0.2
-0.4

C CPSTATIC
Pitch Angle,  (Deg.)

CPYAW 4.6
5.2PPITCH CPTOTAL
-0.1

-10 4.4 5.4


-1.0 0.0
1.4 5.0
5.6 4.2
5.8
1.1 1.0
-0.7
5.4 4.4
-30 0.2
0.5 4.8 1.2
0.2
0.4
0.6
1.4
1.6 1.0
0.8
1.8
4.8 4.64.6 1.2 1.6
-50 2.0 2.2 2.4 1.4
-15 -5 5 15 -5 5 15 -5 5 15 -5 5 15
Yaw Angle,  (Deg.)
Figure 4. Calibration curves of the single-hole probe

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Comparison of calibration curves for the four and two hole probes shows that the two hole probe
has larger range of both CPYAW and CPPITCH. One would expect nearly same range for both
probes. The most probable reason is that the left and right holes of the four hole probe are drilled
at 50O, while pressures measured the centre hole at + 45O are used for left and right pressures for
the two hole probe. Recent investigations by Sitaram and Srikanth (6) had shown that small
chamfer angle gave larger operating range for a five hole probe. Curves of CPPITCH with CPYAW
and contours of CPTOTAL and CPSTATIC are almost symmetrical with CPPITCH for the two hole
probe, while this is not the case for the four hole probe. The probable reason is inaccuracy in the
drilling of left and right holes. For two hole probe, pressures measured the centre hole at + 45O
are used in the calculation of the calibration coefficients. For the single hole probe, the yaw
coefficient is almost symmetrical about yaw angle.

6. COMPARISON OF SENSITIVITY COEFFICIENTS OF CALIBRATION


COEFFICIENTS OF ONE, TWO AND FOUR HOLE PROBES

The sensitivity coefficients of the calibration coefficients for the three probes are defined as follows:
Cp(i1)  Cp(i1)
ΔCpi 
Angle (i  1)  Angle (i  1)
Where Cpi is any calibration coefficient at a yaw or pitch angle, i. The sensitivity coefficients for
the three probes are presented in Fig. 5 to 7 as follows:

1 Sensitivity coefficients of calibration coefficients, CPTOTAL, CPSTATIC, CPPITCH and CPYAW vs.
pitch angle for different yaw angles.

2 Sensitivity coefficients of calibration coefficients, CPTOTAL, CPSTATIC, CPPITCH and CPYAW vs.
yaw angle for different pitch angles.

From the sensitivity curves, it can be seen that the sensitivity of the calibration coefficients,
other than the pitch coefficient for the two hole probe has a larger value compared to that for the
single and four hole probes. However the single hole probe has a lower value of sensitivity of
the pitch coefficient, as expected. But still the single hole probe can be used for a large range of
pitch angle (-50O to 30O). The lower yaw angle range is not critical as the probe can always be
rotated about the yaw angle, when the yaw angle exceeds + 15O.

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0.02

-0.04
-0.02

CPYAW

CPYAW
0.04

CPPITCH
-50O

CPPITCH
-30O
-10O
0.00
10O
-0.06 0.02 30O
-0.04

-20O 0.02
0.02
-10O
-0.02 0O
CPTOTAL

10O
-0.08
30O -0.06 0.00

0.00 0.00 0.00

CPTOTAL
CPSTATIC
0.02

CPSTATIC
-0.02

-0.02
-50 -10 30 -0.02-50 -10 30 -0.02
Pitch Angle,  (Deg.) Pitch Angle,  (Deg.) 0.00

-0.02 -0.04
-20 0 20 -20 0 20
Yaw Angle,  (Deg.) Yaw Angle,  (Deg.)
Figure 5. Sensitivity curves of calibration coefficients of the four-hole probe

0.01 -0.08
-0.02
CPYAW


-50O
0.04
-30O
0.02 -10O

CPPITCH
-0.10
-0.01 10O
CPSTATIC

-0.04
CPYAW

30O
CPPITCH

0.02

0.00 -0.12

-0.06
0.00

 (Deg.)
O
-20
O -0.14 0.00
0.01 -0.02 -10
O
0
-0.02
CTOTAL

-0.08 O
10
CPTOTAL

O
20

0.01 -0.02
-0.01 -0.04
-50 -30 -10 10 30 -50 -30 -10 10 30
Pitch Angle,  (Deg.)
CPSTATIC

Pitch Angle,  (Deg.)

-0.01 -0.06
-20 0 20 -20 0 20
Yaw Angle,  (Deg.) Yaw Angle,  (Deg.)
Figure 6. Sensitivity curves of calibration coefficients of the two-hole probe
0.04 
0.05 -50
O
0.01
CPPITCH

-0.08 O
-30
CPYAW

CPSTATIC

O
CPYAW

-10
O
10
O
0.00 -0.12 30
0.00
 -0.01
O
0.1
-15
0.1 -5
O

O
5
O
-0.05 15
CPPITCH

0.1
CPSTATIC

0.0
-0.10
-0.01
CPTOTAL

CPTOTAL

0.0
0.0

-0.1
-0.06
-15 -5 5 15 -15 -5 5 15
Yaw Angle,  (Deg.)
-50 -30 -10 10 30 -50 -30 -10 10 30 Yaw Angle,  (Deg.)
Pitch Angle,  (Deg.) Pitch Angle,  (Deg.)
Figure 7. Sensitivity curves of calibration coefficients of the single-hole probe

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7. CONCLUSIONS

From the present investigation carried out on the comparison of single, two and four hole probes
for three dimensional flow measurements, the following conclusions are drawn.

1 The performance of the single and two hole probes is comparable to that of the four hole
probe. While the four hole probe requires less time to acquire measurement data, the single
and two hole probes require about 2-3 times more time to acquire the same amount of
measurement data. This is not a major constraint as the data acquisition system can be
completely automated. In fact by utilizing flow adaptive traversing of the aerodynamic
probes developed by Lenherr et al. (7) and Bartsch et al. (8) the time required for data
acquisition by the single and two hole probes can be further reduced.

2 The single and two hole probes have the advantage of smaller size when fast response
pressure transducers are embedded in the probe compared to the four hole probe. This is a
major advantage for measuring time dependent flows.

REFERENCES
1 J. P. Schlienger, Evolution of unsteady secondary flows in a multistage shrouded axial turbine, ETH No. 15230, Ph.D.
Dissertation, ETH, Zurich, Switzerland, 2003.
2 Suresh Munivenkatareddy and Nekkanti Sitaram, “Extended Calibration Technique of a Four-Hole Probe for Three-
Dimensional Flow Measurements”, International Journal of Rotating Machinery Volume 2016, Article ID 5327296, 12
pages, http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/5327297.
3 J. Schlienger, A. Pfau, A.I. Kalfas, and R. S. Abhari, “Single Pressure Transducer Probe for 3d Flow Measurements”, Proc.
of The 16th Symposium on Measuring Techniques in Transonic and Supersonic Flow in Cascades and Turbomachines,
September 2002, Cambridge, UK.
4 A. Pfau, J. Schlienger, A.I. Kalfas, and R. S. Abhari, “Virtual Four Sensor Fast Response Aerodynamic Probe (FRAP®)”,
Proc. of The 16th Symposium on Measuring Techniques in Transonic and Supersonic Flow in Cascades and
Turbomachines, September 2002, Cambridge, UK.
5 Luca Porreca, Marc Hollenstein, Anestis I. Kalfas, and Reza S. Abhari, “Turbulence Measurements and Analysis in a
Multistage Axial Turbine”, Journal of Propulsion and Power, Vol. 23, No. 1, pp. 227-234, Jan.–Feb. 2007.
6 Nekkanti Sitaram and Kancherla Srikanth, “Effect of Chamfer Angle on the Calibration Curves of Five Hole Probes”,
International Journal of Rotating Machinery, Vol. 2014, Article ID704315, 10 pages, http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/704315.
7 C Lenherr, A I Kalfas and R S Abhari, “A flow adaptive aerodynamic probe concept for turbomachinery”, Measurement
Science and Technology, Volume 18, Number 8, pp. 2599-2608, 2007.
8 Christian Bartsch, Magnus Holle, Peter Jeschke and Timo Metzler, “Quasi Two-Dimensional Flow-Adaptive Algorithm for
Pneumatic Probe Measurements”, Journal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement, and Control, Vol. 139, pp. 071011-1 to
071011-10, July 2017.