Opportunity at Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL)
Injection and Flameholding in Supersonic Flows
Aerospace Systems Directorate, RQ/Airbreathing Propulsion
||Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 454337542
|Gruber, Mark R.
The success of a hydrocarbon-fueled scramjet depends on the ability of the combustor to sustain efficient combustion over a wide operating range. During a typical flight, the combustor will experience several transient events that, if not robustly managed by the flameholding system, could compromise engine performance and even vehicle life. For example, the flowfield that exists inside the combustor before ignition is significantly different than the flowfield after ignition. Also, as the engine accelerates from low to high flight velocity (e.g., Mach 4 to 8), the character of the flow within the combustor changes, the combustor fuel distribution may change, and the fuel itself may change (as a result of endothermic cracking). All of these changes may significantly impact the behavior and stability of the flameholder We support both experimental and computational research activities aimed at improving the understanding of flameholding in supersonic flows. We then strive to use that improved understanding to design and investigate more robust flame stabilization techniques for hydrocarbon-fueled scramjets. We have several experimental resources available to execute the research including two combustor thrust stands, a research combustor designed for a wide range of operation, and a stand-alone supersonic research facility specifically designed for non-intrusive probing of reacting and non-reacting flowfields to flameholding in a supersonic combustor. A wealth of conventional and advanced instrumentation is also available for measurements of pressure, temperature, velocity, and species concentration. Extensive allocations of computer hardware (CPU and GPU) resources are available via the DoD High Performance Computing Modernization Program. In addition, computer software (commercial, government, and university) is available to support computational studies along with technical support for transitioning the applicant's personal software to effectively use the HPC resources.
Supersonic internal flows; Scramjet engines; Combustion; Flame stabilization; Hypersonics; Air-breathing propulsion; Shock-boundary layer interactions;
Open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents
Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants