Science & Tech

Trisonic Wind Tunnel

  • The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) successfully completed the first blow-down test to officially open the new trisonic wind tunnel.
  • Large tubes with air moving within are called wind tunnels.
  • The tunnels are used to mimic an object in flight’s movements.
  • Wind tunnels are used by researchers to better understand how an aircraft will fly.
  • Space agencies test scale models of aircraft and spacecraft in wind tunnels. Some wind tunnels are large enough to accommodate whole automobile models.
  • In a wind tunnel, air is moved around an item to simulate actual flight.

Working of Wind Tunnels

  • Powerful fans are typically used to move air through the tube.
  • The testing object is secured inside the tube so that it cannot move.
  • A miniature replica of a car might be the item. It might only be a component of a car.
  • It might be a large spaceship or aircraft. Even a commonplace thing like a tennis ball qualifies.
  • You may put smoke or dye in the air and watch it move. To demonstrate how the air is moving, threads might be affixed to the object.
  • The force of the air on the object is frequently measured using specialised instruments.

Trisonic Wind Tunnel at VSCC

  • The phrase “trisonic” describes the tunnel’s ability to conduct tests at three different speeds: subsonic, transonic, and supersonic (supersonic).
  • Its components include air storage tanks, an airflow’smoothening’ chamber, and nozzles for releasing air into the test portion.
  • It is roughly 160 metres long and 5.4 metres wide at its widest point.
  • A “blow down test” simulates flight circumstances by releasing stored gases and blowing them through the test section of the tunnel.
  • According to the space agency, the tunnel can simulate flight circumstances at speeds ranging from 0.8 times the speed of sound (68 metres per second) to 4 times the speed of sound (1,360 metres per second).
  • Commissioned in 2017, this tunnel can simulate flow speeds up to Mach 12.
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