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Experimental and Computational Analysis of Unidirectional Flow Through Stirling Engine Heater HeadA high efficiency Stirling Radioisotope Generator (SRG) is being developed for possible use in long-duration space science missions. NASA s advanced technology goals for next generation Stirling convertors include increasing the Carnot efficiency and percent of Carnot efficiency. To help achieve these goals, a multi-dimensional Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) code is being developed to numerically model unsteady fluid flow and heat transfer phenomena of the oscillating working gas inside Stirling convertors. In the absence of transient pressure drop data for the zero mean oscillating multi-dimensional flows present in the Technology Demonstration Convertors on test at NASA Glenn Research Center, unidirectional flow pressure drop test data is used to compare against 2D and 3D computational solutions. This study focuses on tracking pressure drop and mass flow rate data for unidirectional flow though a Stirling heater head using a commercial CFD code (CFD-ACE). The commercial CFD code uses a porous-media model which is dependent on permeability and the inertial coefficient present in the linear and nonlinear terms of the Darcy-Forchheimer equation. Permeability and inertial coefficient were calculated from unidirectional flow test data. CFD simulations of the unidirectional flow test were validated using the porous-media model input parameters which increased simulation accuracy by 14 percent on average.
Document ID
Document Type
Technical Memorandum (TM)
Wilson, Scott D.
(Sest, Inc. Middleburgh Heights, OH, United States)
Dyson, Rodger W.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Tew, Roy C.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Demko, Rikako
(Sest, Inc. Middleburgh Heights, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
September 7, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 2006
Subject Category
Fluid Mechanics And Thermodynamics
Report/Patent Number
AIAA Paper 2005-5539
Meeting Information
Third International Energy Conversion Engineering Conference(San Francisco, CA)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 22-972-20-01
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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