Detection of near-wall vortices and their manipulation by use of dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators
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A sizable amount of the drag on a typical jet airplane is due to skin friction. Decreasing this skin friction drag by even just a small percentage could significantly increase the efficiency of the plane. The idea of stationary vortices has previously been proposed as a method of skin friction reduction. Vortices could potentially be held stationary by flow control devices such as plasma actuators. This thesis lays the groundwork of a study to determine the feasibility of this idea in two ways. First, the effects of plasma actuators on vortices are studied. Second, wind tunnel tests were performed to develop a method of locating the center of vortices downstream of vortex generators. An accurate method of vortex detection will be vital in further experimental studies of plasma actuator effects.