Student: Julie Bothell, Graduate Student in Mechanical Engineering, Iowa State University
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Theodore Heindel
X-ray Imaging of the Spray from a Coaxial Air Blast Atomizer
The use of sprays in fuel injection systems, as well as in industrial painting and coating systems, have been a subject of thorough investigation for many years. Although these studies characterize sprays in many ways, the region that is very close to the nozzle (the near-field region) still contains many unknown parameters. This region has relatively thick liquid sheets and large droplets that are impenetrable to visible light and highly affected by any technique that attempts to probe the flow. However, techniques such as high-speed X-ray radiographic imaging make it possible to quantitatively conceptualize this complex flow region. I, along with a team of researchers, are using the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Lab in Chicago to take temporally and spatially resolved X-ray imaging data of a coaxial air blast atomizer (chosen as a canonical flow system). These data are being used in a multi-university collaboration to fully characterize the flow and work to develop the first actively controlled spray. If used in jet engines, it has the potential to make air transportation significantly more efficient and environmentally friendly. It could also improve sprays in our everyday lives by providing a method to actively control industrial painting and coating systems.
Dr. Theodore (Ted) Heindel is a significant contributor to the field of multiphase X-ray radiography and is my advisor for my Ph.D. research at Iowa State University.