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research-article

Blast Wave Induced Mixing in a Laser Ignited Hypersonic Flow

[+] Author and Article Information
Nicholas Gibbons

PhD Student, Center for Hypersonics, School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Brisbane 4072
n.gibbons@uq.edu.au

Rolf Gehre

Honorary Fellow, Center for Hypersonics, School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Brisbane 4072
r.gehre@rocketlab.co.nz

Stefan Brieschenk

Adjunct Fellow, Center for Hypersonics, School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Brisbane 4072
s.brieschenk@rocketlab.co.nz

Vincent Wheatley

Senior Lecturer, Center for Hypersonics, School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Brisbane 4072
v.wheatley@uq.edu.au

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4038397 History: Received December 01, 2016; Revised October 30, 2017

Abstract

A laser ignition system suitable for a hypersonic scramjet engine is considered. Wall-Modelled Large Eddy Simulation is used to study a scramjet-like geometry with a single hydrogen injector on the inlet and an air crossflow at Mach 8 air, using detailed chemical kinetics and high fidelity turbulence modelling. The laser forms a kernel of high temperature plasma inside the fuel plume that briefly ignites the flow and leads to massive disruption of the flow structures around the jet, due to the expanding plasma kernel driving a blast wave that collides with the surrounding flow. The blast wave produces vorticity as it passes through the fuel-air interface, but comparably less than that produced by the jetting of the hot gas affected by the laser as it expands outward into the crossflow. The remnant of the plasma rolls up into a powerful vortex ring and noticeably increases the fuel plume area and the volume of well mixed reactants present in the simulation. These results indicate that the laser ignition system does more than just supply the energy to ignite the flow, it also substantially alters the flow structure and the mixing process.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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