aerothermodynamics


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Aerothermodynamics

Flow of gases in which heat exchanges produce a significant effect on the flow. Traditionally, aerodynamics treats the flow of gases, usually air, in which the thermodynamic state is not far different from standard atmospheric conditions at sea level. In such a case the pressure, temperature, and density are related by the simple equation of state for a perfect gas; and the rest of the gas's properties, such as specific heat, viscosity, and thermal conductivity, are assumed constant. Because fluid properties of a gas depend upon its temperature and composition, analysis of flow systems in which temperatures are high or in which the composition of the gas varies (as it does at high velocities) requires simultaneous examination of thermal and dynamic phenomena. For instance, at hypersonic flight speed the characteristic temperature in the shock layer of a blunted body or in the boundary layer of a slender body is proportional to the square of the Mach number. These are aerothermodynamic phenomena.

Two problems of particular importance require aerothermodynamic considerations: combustion and high-speed flight. Chemical reactions sustained by combustion flow systems produce high temperatures and variable gas composition. Because of oxidation (combustion) and in some cases dissociation and ionization processes, these systems are sometimes described as aerothermochemical. In high-speed flight the kinetic energy used by a vehicle to overcome drag forces is converted into compression work on the surrounding gas and thereby raises the gas temperature. Temperature of the gas may become high enough to cause dissociation (at Mach number ≥7) and ionization (at Mach number ≥12); thus the gas becomes chemically active and electrically conducting. See Mach number

aerothermodynamics

[‚e·rō‚thər·mō·dī′nam·iks]
(fluid mechanics)
The study of aerodynamic phenomena at sufficiently high gas velocities that thermodynamic properties of the gas are important.

Aerothermodynamics

Flow of gases in which heat exchanges produce a significant effect on the flow. Traditionally, aerodynamics treats the flow of gases, usually air, in which the thermodynamic state is not far different from standard atmospheric conditions at sea level. In such a case the pressure, temperature, and density are related by the simple equation of state for a perfect gas; and the rest of the gas's properties, such as specific heat, viscosity, and thermal conductivity, are assumed constant. Because fluid properties of a gas depend upon its temperature and composition, analysis of flow systems in which temperatures are high or in which the composition of the gas varies (as it does at high velocities) requires simultaneous examination of thermal and dynamic phenomena. For instance, at hypersonic flight speed the characteristic temperature in the shock layer of a blunted body or in the boundary layer of a slender body is proportional to the square of the Mach number. These are aerothermodynamic phenomena.

Two problems of particular importance require aerothermodynamic considerations: combustion and high-speed flight. Chemical reactions sustained by combustion flow systems produce high temperatures and variable gas composition. Because of oxidation (combustion) and in some cases dissociation and ionization processes, these systems are sometimes described as aerothermochemical. In high-speed flight the kinetic energy used by a vehicle to overcome drag forces is converted into compression work on the surrounding gas and thereby raises the gas temperature. Temperature of the gas may become high enough to cause dissociation (at Mach number ≥7) and ionization (at Mach number ≥12); thus the gas becomes chemically active and electrically conducting. See Combustion, Hypersonic flight, Jet propulsion, Rocket propulsion

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