Snowplow Surface Discharge in Magnetic Field for High Speed Boundary Layer Control Conference Paper uri icon


  • The performance of air breathing supersonic and hypersonic vehicles is strongly affected by the boundary layer that forms along the surface of the inlet. At off-design operating conditions, a shockwave intersecting the boundary layer can cause the flow to separate which may lead to a drastic reduction in vehicle performance. The work presented in this paper explores a possible way to use magnetically driven surface contracted plasma column to accelerate the flow near the surface. The velocity of the plasma column in a Mach 2.8 in-draft tunnel was investigated at different magnetic field strengths (up to 2.0 Tesla) and was recorded using a high-speed camera. The discharge was observed to travel several times faster than the neutral flow and the velocity was seen to increase with the increasing magnetic field. Pitot probe measurements indicated that magnetically accelerated plasma column affected the flow near the wall and may have the potential of providing a method for flow boundary layer acceleration and flow control.

name of conference

  • 44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit

published proceedings

  • 44th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit

author list (cited authors)

  • Zaidi, S., Smith, T., Macheret, S., & Miles, R.

citation count

  • 40

complete list of authors

  • Zaidi, Sohail||Smith, Thomas||Macheret, Sergey||Miles, Richard

publication date

  • January 2006