Comparison of CFD and theoretical post-shock gradients in hypersonic flow

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


In recent work of Prof. Hans Hornung, expressions for the gradients of flow properties immediately behind a curved shock wave were obtained for a reacting gas.1 In this paper, I use the expressions derived by Hornung to compare with inviscid computational fluid dynamics simulations of a Mach 8 flow over a cylinder. A finite-rate vibrational relaxation model is used to simplify the comparisons with theory. The shape of the bow shock wave is extracted from the CFD results, fitted with a polynomial, and then used to compute the post-shock gradients of the main flow variables. It is found that in general the CFD results are in very good agreement with the theory for both perfect gas and vibrationally relaxing flows. There are some notable differences, mostly centered on the location of the inflection in the post-shock density gradient; this quantity is found to be very sensitive to the relaxation rate of the gas. The theoretical post-shock gradients provide a rigorous test of CFD and suggest possible experiments that would be very sensitive test of the models of finite-rate vibrational and chemical processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009
Event39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference - San Antonio, TX, United States
Duration: Jun 22 2009Jun 25 2009

Publication series

Name39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference


Other39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference
CountryUnited States
CitySan Antonio, TX

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    Candler, G. V. (2009). Comparison of CFD and theoretical post-shock gradients in hypersonic flow. In 39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference [2009-3719] (39th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference).