and how do they plan to measure in there? why so big?
ScienceDaily (May 29, 2009)
— The Mechanical Engineering Motorsports Center in the William
States Lee College of Engineering will unveil the fifth largest and
newest water tunnel in the United States, Friday, May 29.
The tunnel has been under construction for more than a year, holds
thousands of gallons of water and has taken more than 5,000 man hours
to build to its current state. Assistant professor, Peter Tkacik, his
Ph.D. student, Sam Hellman, research lab manager, Luke Woroniecki and
Clemson University student Patrick Tkacik are credited with most of the
Weighing 57,000 pounds with approximately three-and-a-half miles of
welded bead in the tunnel, the performance of UNC Charlotte’s
water tunnel surpassed tunnels at the University of Minnesota and NASA
Dryden. Currently, the water tunnel has a flow rate of 1,000 liters per
second and trials have only reached 60 percent of rated speed.
Since the days of Leonardo da Vinci, water tunnels have been in use
for fluid flow research, specifically to observe how moving water flows
around submerged objects. The information applies to air and other
fluids. Water tunnels also increase the understanding of data from wind
The tunnel features a 3 feet square by 10 feet long test section
with thick glass surrounding the front, back and bottom to allow for
laser measurements and easy viewing. The section is large enough to
observe a person swimming.
Water tunnel research applications include the study of race car
aerodynamics, fuel efficiency, aerospace experiments, submarine/surface
vessel efficiency as well as sports applications including swimwear
efficiency, baseball bat, golf club and cycling aerodynamics and
environmental studies such as fish schooling and soil erosion.
Just a good point to remind that we did beautiful Ferrari Dino measurements in another (largest, longest, tallest, …) wind (!) tunnel. It is now shown on our OpenPIV blog: http://openpiv.wordpress.com