Shock Waves Around Bodies Travelling at Slightly Greater Than Sonic Speed
One of the most interesting features of inviscid supersonic flow is the appearance of shock waves. A representative example of this is the emergence of a detached bow wave in a stream flowing supersonically around a solid body. Since no complete analytical solution has been found, owing to the nonlinear and mixed character of the gasdynamic equations which govern this problem, many attempts have been made to find approximate solutions. Much attention has been focussed on the correct determination of the position and shape of the bow wave because it is the only strictly nonlinear phenomenon in the flow and impossible to prescribe correctly with a linear analysis. During the last two decades Professor Zierep and his students have been vigorously tackling this problem with commendable results. Early on Zierep discovered an approximate analytical description for the position and shape of the bow wave that has more recently been confirmed by numerical solutions of the exact equations. In addition to the practical information that this early theory brings to the flow problem, it also plays a very useful role in checking and evaluating the numerical results from the more exact theory. The topic of this article is a comparison between Zierep s approximate analytical predictions together with his experiments and some recent numerical calculations for a number of very low supersonic blunt-body flows.
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