High-speed planar laser-induced fluorescence investigation of nitric oxide generated by hypersonic Mach reflections for computational fluid dynamics validation Academic Article uri icon


  • In this article, the authors present an experimental investigation of the thermochemical relaxation regions downstream of symmetric Mach reflections generated in Mach 8.5 flows with stagnation enthalpies from 7 to 10MJ/kg. The experiment was performed in the Hypervelocity Expansion Tunnel at the National Aerothermochemistry and Hypersonics Laboratory of Texas A&M University. The investigation focused on studying the nitric oxide morphology in the vicinity of a strong normal shock wave and shear layers. Experimental planar laser-induced fluorescence measurements at 250kHz repetition rate with a quasi-simultaneous natural emission photography demonstrate a sufficient rejection of natural emission and reveal intricate flow structures in the shock vicinity. Steady computational fluid dynamics (CFD) flow solutions obtained with the US3D software were used to simulate laser-induced fluorescence signal levels for quantitative comparison against the experimentally acquired data. The investigation accomplished four objectives: complex flowfield visualization in the vicinity of the Mach stem with 4 s temporal resolution, evaluation of the level of high-temperature chemistry effects introduced to the freestream by the expansion tunnel, both qualitative and quantitative CFD simulation validation, and cross-checking or introduction of fundamental properties of nitric oxide laser-induced fluorescence including absorption cross section for vibrationally excited states of nitric oxide and a collisional quenching cross section of nitric oxide by atomic nitrogen.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Leonov, B. S., Dean, T. S., Limbach, C. M., Bowersox, R. D., & Miles, R. B.

complete list of authors

  • Leonov, Boris S||Dean, Tyler S||Limbach, Christopher M||Bowersox, Rodney D||Miles, Richard B

publication date

  • June 2023