The lab houses gasdynamic accelerators of dust and small projectiles such as two-stage light gas guns (hypervelocity, order of several km/s) and single stage guns (low speeds, in the range 1 – 100 m/s). Laser based diagnostics are used for accurate velocity measurements. Images of projectile impacts on targets can be taken by synchronized photographic systems.

The lab also comprises a high-enthalpy pulsed supersonic/hypersonic tunnel, capable of simulating high speed flight conditions (Mach numbers in the range 3 – 8). The test chamber may contain aerodynamic components or small-scale complete “airbreathing” engines such as ramjet and scramjets, whose aerodynamic and propulsion characteristics can be evaluated and optimised.

Hypersonic tunnel

    • Force, pressure temperature sensors and multi-channel acquisition systems;
    • Two-stage compressor (OLMEVA, 200 bar);
    • Vacuum pumps (LEYBOLD, one/two stages, 4 - 200 m3/h);
    • Turbo-molecular vacuum pumps;
    • DIAS (Digital Image Acquisition System) - Single bit, 300 pixels matrix, up to 1 Mfps, 2000 frames storage (home made, 1990 patent);
    • Camera MAMIYA with complete set of photographic lens;
    • Video camera CCD COHU;
    • Low power He-Ne lasers.