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Research Abstracts Online
January 2009 - March 2010

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
Institute of Technology
Department of Mechanical Engineering

PI: Uwe R. Kortshagen, Associate Fellow

Separation Control Using Plasma Actuators on Low-pressure Turbine Airfoils With Passing Wakes: Experiments and Modeling

These researchers are developing a plasma actuator array that can suppress boundary-layer separation on a low-pressure turbine airfoil operating at a very low-chord Reynolds number. The key to this is the accurate modeling of the actuator and its influence on the flow-enabling optimum design under transient conditions created by passing wakes. One focus is the development of models for dielectric barrier discharge actuators. The researchers will also address the integration of these models into CFD models that will be sophisticated enough to allow accurate control of the actuators in the unsteady wake-passing event. The plasma model will be used to evaluate the body force due to momentum transfer from charged particles. Current work involves helium-nitrogen atmospheric pressure glow discharge. The model involves a self-consistent solution of the Poisson equation for the electric field and continuity and momentum equations for all the species. The researchers are implementing a more complete chemistry to describe air plasma. The complete model will be run for the conditions tested in the experiments. Another research focus has been the accurate prediction of electron energy distribution function, which is essential for the correct prediction of atomic processes and plasma chemical rates in low-pressure plasmas.

Group Members

Youping Hu, Visiting Researcher
Meenakshi Mamunuru, Graduate Student