Modeling of Test Section Conditions in a High Enthalpy Flow Facility
Drabiak, Daniel Robert
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The Shock Wave Reactor laboratory, or SWR, at the University of Washington is a high enthalpy flow facility capable of a wide range of test conditions. In this study, an analytical model has been prepared using MATLAB in an effort to predict the envelope of test conditions of which the SWR is capable for a given range of input conditions. The SWR modeling assumed one-dimensional, steady, ideal gas flow, and considered the effects of heat transfer and friction on stagnation pressure and stagnation temperature, as well as other values such as Mach number. The SWR can receive steam from a pebble bed heater at temperatures up to 1400 K and H2(g) and O2(g) at room temperature in a combustor section. The resulting fluid flows through a converging-diverging nozzle, which accelerates the flow to supersonic Mach numbers, typically at about Mach 2.5. Downstream of the throat, feedstock such as N2(g) can be injected into the flow. Downstream of feedstock injection, the flow proceeds through a mixer section into a test section with a diameter of 4”. It is the flow properties in the test section that were attempted to be predicted by the model in this study. The model was run using known or assumed input conditions for existing SWR experimental data, and the modeled results for the test section data were compared against the experimental data. Although the model showed good ability to predict the trends of test section conditions relative to input conditions, the model mostly did not show good ability to predict the envelope of test conditions that the SWR is capable of producing.