CALIBRATION OF HIGH-FREQUENCY PRESSURE SENSORS USING LOW-PRESSURE SHOCK WAVES

2019-05-14T19:01:29Z (GMT) by Mark Wason
Many important measurements of low-amplitude instabilities related to hypersonic laminar-turbulent boundary-layer transition have been successfully performed with 1-MHz PCB132 pressure sensors. However, there is large uncertainty in measurements made with PCB132 sensors due to their poorly understood response at high frequency. The current work continues efforts to better characterize the PCB132 sensor with a low-pressure shock tube, using the pressure change across the incident shock as an approximate step input.
New vacuum-control valves provide precise control of pre-run pressures in the shock tube, generally to within 1\% of the desired pressure. Measurements of the static-pressure step across the shock made with Kulite sensors showed high consistency for similar pre-run pressures. Skewing of the incident shock was measured by PCB132 sensors, and was found to be negligible across a range of pressure ratios and static-pressure steps. Incident-shock speed decreases along the shock tube, as expected. Vibrational effects on the PCB132 sensor response are significantly lower in the final section of the driven tube.
Approximate frequency responses were computed from pitot-mode responses. The frequency-response amplitude varied by a factor of 5 between 200--1000 kHz due to significant resonance peaks. Measurements with blinded PCB132 sensors indicate that the resonances in the frequency response are not due to vibration.
Using the approximate frequency response measured with the shock tube to correct the spectra of wind-tunnel data produced inconclusive results. Correcting pitot-mode PCB132 wind-tunnel data removed a possible resonance peak near 700 kHz, but did not agree with the spectrum of a reference sensor in the range of 11--100 kHz.