NASA Now Minute: Engineering Design: Wind Tunnel Testing

[ Sound Effects ] Testing in a wind tunnel. [ Sound Effects ] Well, a wind tunnel basically
is a test apparatus that we set up to mix mirror
dynamic measurements. A wind tunnel will
start with a fan. We start up with a very
large height of flow and then we restrict that
down to a smaller height and that cause it to speed up. If you can think of
taking your garden hose and turning the flow on, then
putting your thumb over the end. What you’ve done is
restricted the end that makes it come out faster. We do exactly the same
thing with the air. We would like to understand how
aerodynamic forces are generated on, either aircraft,
or other things that we’re interested
in studying. So, instead of doing
this at full scale, during a vehicle that’s actually
flying, it’s better to do it when the model is stationary
and the wind is blowing over it, so that we can make more
precise measurements. And so, we use certain
combinations of pieces of data that you take from the tunnel to
figure out how that would apply to the full-scaled vehicle. [ Sound Effects ] Be sure to tell your
teacher to check out the NASA Explorer
Schools Virtual Campus. [ Music ]

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