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A Study of Detached Shock Waves in Two-Dimensions


Alperin, Morton (1950) A Study of Detached Shock Waves in Two-Dimensions. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/NW30-HY03.


The present report contains results of an experimental and theoretical investigation of the detached shock wave phenomenon. The experimental phase of this study was actually carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at California Institute of Technology, in a two-dimensional wind tunnel which is briefly described in Section I.

Section II contains a description of the experiments on circular cylinders. The circular cylinder was used in this series of tests primarily because of its simplicity. The investigation discussed in II-1 required a large variation of model shapes and would have required much more time had it been based on a more complicated body shape. In addition to data on the shock wave position and shape, the pressure distribution was also obtained at M=1.546 for a two-dimensional circular cylinder. From this pressure distribution, the drag was calculated.

Although the theoretical knowledge of flow involving detached shock waves is in a rather primitive state, a review of the existing theoretical work and comparison with experimental data is made in section III.

In section IV a method is presented for finding the stream function or velocity potential for the subsonic region behind the detached shock wave. This method depends upon the hypothesis that the flow can be considered to be irrotational in this region without introducing a serious error. The results appear to be in good agreement with the experiments although the example carried out does not apply strictly to the circular cylinder body shape used in the experiments.

A general discussion of the existing theories and their comparison with experimental data is presented in section V.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Aeronautics and Mathematics
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Aeronautics
Minor Option:Mathematics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Stewart, Homer Joseph (advisor)
  • Nagamatsu, Henry T. (advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:1 January 1950
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-02022009-081306
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:471
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:02 Feb 2009
Last Modified:23 Apr 2021 19:51

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PDF (Alperin_m_1950.pdf) - Final Version
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