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There are 15 combustor and aerochemistry technology test facilities and laboratories. Fundamental and applied research is aimed at advancing the technology of the combustion processes of aeronautical gas turbine engines and advanced space transportation concepts.


C-2002-965: Researcher in front of high speed turbine seal test rig C-1996-3558: High speed, high temperature foil air bearing rig
Facility Capabilities

TurbomachineryCombustorFlow PhysicsHeat Transfer
Data Acquisition

Turbomachinery Facilities
Eleven turbomachinery facilities and laboratories are located in the ERB. Fundamental and applied research to advance compressor and turbine component technology for aeronautical gas turbine engines is conducted in the facilities. Both axial- and radial-type machinery are studied. Research is focused on improved understanding of steady and unsteady aerodynamics, flow physics, and modeling and advanced numerical flow code development and validation. Research experiments utilize advanced instrumentation systems such as hot-wire anemometry and laser diagnostics where detailed flow data is obtained on a nonintrusive basis.

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Combustor Facilities

There are fifteen combustor and aerochemistry technology test facilities and laboratories within the ERB. Fundamental and applied research is aimed at advancing the technology of the combustion processes of aeronautical gas turbine engines and advanced space transportation concepts. Research is focused on providing improved understanding of chemical kinetics of reacting flows, heat transfer phenomena, advanced high-temperature materials, low NOx combustion, and code development and validation.

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Flow Physics Facilities

Eight aerodynamic flow physics technology facilities are located in the ERB. These facilities are used to conduct research advancing the understanding of subsonic-to-supersonic flow physics phenomena fundamental to ducted wall-bound flows. Research involves the development, assessment, and application of computational fluid dynamics tools for ducted flows, and for the acquisition and analysis of experimental measurements of flows in inlets, ducts, and nozzles. Typically, testing is performed to define basic flow properties, to predict and validate component performance, and to investigate specific phenomena including shock systems, boundary layers, bleeds, diffusion, separated flows, heat transfer, cooling, spillage, acoustics, and stability.

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Heat Transfer Technology

Six aeropropulsion heat transfer technology facilities are located in the ERB. These facilities provide testing capability for experiments to advance fundamental understanding of the heat transfer process and to contribute to the predictive capability for heat transfer in aeronautical and space propulsion systems. Research in these facilities centers on gas turbine-related heat transfer with special emphasis placed on gas path aero/heat transfer.

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Data Acquisition
The ERB facility consists of many different test cells. The test cells are categorized into four broad areas: Turbomachinery, Flow Physics, Combustors, and Heat Transfer. The test cells in each look at different aspects of these areas. However, the data acquisition system in each test cell consists of two basic components, which are the same for all test cells – an analog steady state acquisition system and a pressure measurement system. In addition, a portable transient data acquisition system can be provided upon request.

  • Analog Steady State Data System – Escort
    Escort, the analog steady state data acquisition system, uses a DEC Alpha microprocessor to provide:
    • An X window base system
    • Real time on-line acquisition of analog signals
    • Conversion of raw 10 Hz filtered digitized Neff data to engineering units
    • Computed performance calculations, which can be displayed in a variety of tabular and graphical formats
    • Limited checking on all selected channels
    • 1 second update rate

Escort can stand alone to meet all secure test requirements or it can be connected to a central processing cluster, which facilitates software application development, downloading of software, uploading and storage of facility tables, post processing of data and transmitting of data to a data collector for archival storage. Please see the Test Cell (listed below) you are interested in to find out the unique characteristics of the Escort system in that test cell.

  • Pressure System
    ESP is an off the shelf electronically scanned pressure system. The system consists of numerous 32 port, rack mounted modules from +/-2.5 PSID to +500 PSID, located outside the test chamber. Each module has a check pressure to assure the module is performing correctly and can be calibrated in place using up to 5 highly accurate calibration pressures to maintain the overall system accuracy of +/-0.05% of range. This calibration is performed every 2 hours. Please see the Test Cell (listed below) you are interested in to find out how many channels and what ranges of ESP modules are typically provided for that test cell.

  • Transient Data Systems
    While ERB test cells do not have dedicated transient data systems, a portable system can be made available. The transient data system provides multi-channel high speed digitized acquisition of rapidly changing cyclic or non-periodic impulse type events. A typical portable system consists of:
    • A front end of aliasing filters
    • The ability to off loading the data by FTPing, in near real time, to either one of our computers or yours for post processing
    • Up to 64 channels with a 16 Bit A/D per channel
    • Throughput of a minimum of 800 Kilo samples per second

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Further Information
Engine Research Building
A large complex with 60 test rigs supporting engine research and development.
+ View the fact sheet (PDF)
Combustor Facilities at NASA Glenn
Review the seven combustor test rigs at NASA Glenn
+ View the fact sheet (PDF)
Turbomachinery Test Facilities at NASA Glenn
Review the capabilites of our turbomachinery test rigs.
+ View the fact sheet (PDF)

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Last Updated: July 3, 2014