Pressure Dependence of Plasma Actuated Flow Control

Master's Thesis


Novel applications for plasma actuators necessitate performance predictions that are reliable at a range of environmental conditions. An experimental setup is used to determine how Single Dielectric Barrier Discharge (SDBD) plasma actuators perform under variable ambient pressure. Measurements of plasma initiation voltage and static thrust were compared to similar data from literature.

Recurring trends in the experimental thrust were evaluated against simulations from the Space-Time Lumped Element Model, which was designed strictly for atmospheric pressure. Parameters in the model affected by ambient pressure (capacitance, resistance, and Debye length of the air) were then systematically adjusted to determine their effects on the plasma-produced body force. Even with an empirical approximation of threshold voltage, the model did not predict a body force that changed with pressure in a similar manner to experiment. Filament formation, not physically represented in the model, was very prevalent at pressures above atmospheric and may be responsible for the complicated trends in data.


Attribute NameValues
  • etd-07232010-001255

Author Joseph A. Valerioti
Advisor Dr. Thomas Corke
Contributor Dr. Thomas Corke, Committee Chair
Contributor Dr. Flint Thomas, Committee Member
Contributor Dr. Robert Nelson, Committee Member
Degree Level Master's Thesis
Degree Discipline Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering
Degree Name Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering
Defense Date
  • 2010-07-15

Submission Date 2010-07-23
  • United States of America

  • space-time lumped element model

  • filament

  • plasma actuator

  • single dielectric barrier discharge

  • pressure

  • University of Notre Dame

  • English

Record Visibility Public
Content License
  • All rights reserved

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