Measurements in oscillatory flows with separation in support of stirling engine model development

David A. Adolfson, Terrence W. Simon, Mounir B. Ibrahim, David Gedeon

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

10 Scopus citations


This paper is a contribution to a larger program that seeks to improve computation of unsteady flows in Stirling engines. It presents flow visualization results from an experiment that replicates important features of oscillatory flows; such as large-scale separation and adverse and favorable, spatial and temporal acceleration. The geometry is a tube perpendicular to a space between two circular discs, one of which the tube penetrates such that the end of the tube is flush with the disc inner surface. The flow, driven by a piston in the tube, is oscillatory and acts on the exhaust stroke as a jet impinging on the center of a circular disc and on the intake stroke as a sink flow drawn into a tube from the space between the two discs. Time-varying recirculation zones and periodic appearances of highly turbulent flow are observed. In addition to a characterization of oscillatory, separating flow, this program provides code validation support for Stirling engine design models. The project goals are to identify the areas where 1-D modeling is especially weak and to provide support for developing more sophisticated design models that can be used with greater confidence. A complete description of the experiment and results is given. It is shown that a change in geometry can affect the flow in major way; i.e. whether a recirculation eddy survives an entire cycle or is eliminated upon flow reversal. Future work is outlined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Intersociety Energy Conversion Engineering Conference
EditorsE. Pierson, W.D. Jackson, E.B. Dicks
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2002
Event2002 37th Intersociety Energy Conversion Engineering Conference, IECEC - Washington, DC, United States
Duration: Jul 29 2002Jul 31 2002


Other2002 37th Intersociety Energy Conversion Engineering Conference, IECEC
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityWashington, DC


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