, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 219-230

A compact shock-assisted free-piston driver for impulse facilities

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A free-piston driver that employs entropy-raising shock processes with diaphragm rupture has been constructed, which promises significant theoretical advantages over isentropic compression. Results from a range of conditions with helium and argon driver gases are reported. Significant performance gains were achieved in some test cases. Heat losses are shown to have a strong effect on driver processes. Measurements compare well with predictions from a quasi-one-dimensional numerical code.

Received 7 September 1996 / Accepted 5 October 1996