UNCC Hypersonic Wind Tunnel

Jason Solomon (left) and Christian Struckmeyer (right), install the stinger probe apparatus into the testing chamber.  (December, 2019)

The UNCC Hypersonic Wind Tunnel is a benchmark/educational hypervelocity fluid multi-measuring device. It can test samples in hypersonic flow at Mach 3, Mach 5, and Mach 7. It does this by charging twelve compression tanks to an operating pressure of 2000 – 2400 psi. Once the operating pressure is reached, a fast acting actuation valve is opened, via LabView, to allow a high pressure low velocity flow of air through the plenum and in to the inlet of a convergent divergent nozzle (CD nozzle). When this air flow passes through the throat of the CD nozzles at Mach 1, it will dramatically increase velocity from the outlet to atmosphere at a maximum speed of Mach 7 for 10 seconds. A command center is used to operate the hypersonic wind tunnel at a safe distance.

The hypersonic wind tunnel originated as a senior design capstone project and is funded by the Office of Naval Research (ONR). The members of the senior design team were: Jason Solomon (1st image pictured above, left), Michael White, Christian Struckmeyer (1st image above, right), Rollins Stewart (2nd image), and Michael Allen. This team designed and built the hypersonic wind tunnel under the direction of, Mechanical Engineering Professor, Dr. Peter T. Tkacik. Currently, the hypersonic wind tunnel is being used for graduate research by Michael White, U.S.  Army veteran Jason Solomon and U.S. Marine veteran Michael Stokes.