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Flowfield Mapping And Cooling Fan Flowrate Measurement Systems Development By Aerospace Engineering Laboratory Students

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1997 Annual Conference


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Publication Date

June 15, 1997

Start Date

June 15, 1997

End Date

June 18, 1997



Page Count


Page Numbers

2.203.1 - 2.203.7



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Paper Authors

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T. Hannigan

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James E. Simon

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K. Koenig

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G. Cruse

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K. Poh

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2259

Flowfield Mapping and Cooling Fan Flowrate Measurement Systems Development by Aerospace Engineering Laboratory Students

T. Hannigan, J. Simmons, K. Koenig, G. Cruse, K. Poh Mississippi State University/USDA, Agricultural Research Service

Graduate and undergraduate students actively participated in a successful research project for a United States Department of Agriculture laboratory to monitor ventilation air flow in large poultry houses. Aerospace engineering laboratory students, graduate assistants, and faculty assisted in determining the flow rate through a stock cooling fan enclosure, evaluated and redesigned a prototype flow measurement device, and developed a large flowfield mapping system. Laboratory topics typically included data acquisition and control in air flows, including sensor selection, calibrations, and assessment of results, work on this research project could easily be substituted for normal laboratory experiences. Considerable design initiative, problem solving, program development for data acquisition, data reduction, error assessment, and uncertainty analysis were all required of students working on this project.


Students take a two-course sequence of classes designed to bridge the gap between classroom and experimentation. The difficulties in validating analytical or numerical solutions to problems of aerodynamics are well established. Classical empirical and closed form solutions exist for many airflows of interest, but experimentation results that closely correlate with these solutions are not easily obtained. Lab basics include transducer design and selection, and methods of automating the data acquisition and control process. Such automation, coupled with data reduction and presentation on the personal computer, allows repeatable results by relatively inexperienced lab students. This repeatability minimizes incorrect correlation of errors associated with the method of data acquisition with those due to random errors in experimentation and analysis. Careful documentation and repetition of past successful experiments lead students to believe that there is no particular need for insight and experience in laboratory and field testing procedures.

In an effort to involve undergraduate students in research that was unique and open-ended, a cooperative research effort was established with a seemingly unrelated discipline, poultry science. Researchers from a USDA laboratory had contacted aerospace faculty, in an effort to obtain assistance in their experimentation and research into airflows1 in poultry houses. In the past decade, the expansion of the poultry industry has been great, and growth of meat-market birds has turned into a very large and diversified industry, revolving around growers on individual farms. Producers provide the growers with all necessary raw materials and then harvest and market their birds, once grown. Economic pressure is applied to the growers by producers, so grower attempts to more efficiently turn feed into marketable poundage have necessitated automation of the environment of the growing birds. Automatic feeding, watering, and ventilation systems have become a requirement in the industry. The most effective poultry

Hannigan, T., & Simon, J. E., & Koenig, K., & Cruse, G., & Poh, K. (1997, June), Flowfield Mapping And Cooling Fan Flowrate Measurement Systems Development By Aerospace Engineering Laboratory Students Paper presented at 1997 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 10.18260/1-2--6575

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