An experimental investigation of the use of air jet vortex generators to control shock induced boundary layer separation
Air jet vortex generators were originally investigated by R.A. Wallis. Results showed that their effectiveness in delaying shock induced boundary layer separation was not as good as conventional vane type generators. Recent low speed wind tunnel tests carried out at City University indicated that the strength of the vortex could be increased considerably by using rectangular jet exits rather than round ones as used by Wallis. On this basis an investigation into air jet vortex generators was undertaken to find out whether similar improvements in vortex strength may be gained at transonic speeds and hence achieve a more effective method of controlling shock induced boundary layer separation. It was felt that in order to design air jet vortex generators it would be necessary to understand the mechanism by which an air jet forms a vortex, and to evaluate the effects of various jet parameters on vortex size, strength and position. The parameters investigated in this thesis were: (i) exit shape (ii) exit size (iii) jet direction (iv) jet inclination and (v) blowing pressure. The tests were conducted using a combination of high speed wind tunnel tests and flow visualisation in a water tunnel. The wind tunnel tests used the half aerofoil or 'bump technique' as used by Wallis. Bumps with thickness to chord ratios of 8%, 10% and 14% were tested. Increasing the thickness of the bumps resulted in higher local Mach numbers ahead of the shock and hence an increase in the severity of the shock induced separation. Vane vortex generators designed using the criteria laid down by H.H. Pearcey were used to establish a datum of control effectiveness. As a result of this investigation a method by which an air jet forms a vortex has been proposed together with a hypothesis on the influence of the various jet parameters. The results have shown that air jet vortex generators can be designed to be more effective than conventional vane type generators. Based on the work reported in this thesis a set of design guidelines has been proposed together with suggestions for further work.