Shock Waves

, Volume 14, Issue 5–6, pp 371–378 | Cite as

Mass spectrometric measurements of driver gas arrival in the T4 free-piston shock-tunnel

  • R. R. BoyceEmail author
  • M. Takahashi
  • R. J. Stalker
Original Article


Available test time is an important issue for ground-based flow research, particularly for impulse facilities such as shock tunnels, where test times of the order of several ms are typical. The early contamination of the test flow by the driver gas in such tunnels restricts the test time. This paper reports measurements of the driver gas arrival time in the test section of the T4 free-piston shock-tunnel over the total enthalpy range 3–17 MJ/kg, using a time-of-flight mass spectrometer. The results confirm measurements made by previous investigators using a choked duct driver gas detector at these conditions, and extend the range of previous mass spectrometer measurements to that of 3–20 MJ/kg. Comparisons of the contamination behaviour of various piston-driven reflected shock tunnels are also made.


Time-of-flight mass spectrometer Shock tunnel Driver gas contamination Test time 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Formerly Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of QueenslandAustralia
  2. 2.School of Aerospace, Civil and Mechanical EngineeringUniversity College, University of New South Wales, Australian Defence Force AcademyCanberraAustralia
  3. 3.Japanese Aerospace Exploration AgencyKakuda Space CenterKakuda-shi, MiyagiJapan
  4. 4.Division of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

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