We host various facilities to help with our research and teaching including multiple wind tunnels and a fully-automated laboratory measurement instrumentation suite.

Wind tunnels

Aero tunnel

A 1 x 1.2 m test-section recirculating wind tunnel facility with maximum speed of 35 m/s, featuring a rolling-road capability, full (nonintrusive) floor-to-ceiling, fully-automated particle-image velocimetry and laser-Doppler anemometry scanning capability, a six-component force balance, a five-axis traversing system and a suite of other fully-automated instrumentation systems for quick-turnaround, high-yield experimental testing.

EnFlo tunnel

This is a large NCAS national facility capable of producing thermally stratified turbulent boundary layer flows with a wide range of temperature and velocity boundary conditions at scales of 1:100 to 1:1000. This tunnel is unique in the UK as one of few in the world which allow experiments to be carried out in controlled conditions simulating the Earth's atmosphere.

Wind tunnels A to E

Tunnel A
  • Open circuit, blow down
  • Working section: 0.9 x 0.6 x 5 m (width x height x length)
  • Maximum wind speed: 30 m/s
  • Free Stream Turbulence Intensity: < 0.1%
  • Low-cost facility
  • Used primarily for rapid testing, calibration and validation
Tunnel B
  • Open circuit, blow down
  • Working section: 1.5 x 0.5 x 2 m (width x height x length)
  • Maximum wind speed: 15 m/s
  • Free Stream Turbulence Intensity: < 0.25%
Tunnel C
  • Open circuit, blow down
  • Working section: 0.3 x 0.3 x 3 m (width x height x length)
Tunnel D
  • Open circuit, blow down
  • Working section: 0.6 x 0.3 x 2 m (width x height x length)
  • Maximum wind speed: 20 m/s
Tunnel E
  • Closed circuit
  • Working section: 1.1 x 1.4 x 9 m (width x height x length)
  • Maximum wind speed: 40 m/s

Meteorological wind tunnel

This wind tunnel is the EnFlo's main facility, it is a Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) - National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) facility, making it available to the NCAS community. It is also part of the National Wind Tunnel Facility.

At 20 metres long it features a comprehensive inlet flow and surface heating and cooling systems for generation of neutral, stable and unstable boundary layers and neutral and stable free flows.

Other key features include two three dimensional, computer controlled traversing gears, tracer supply systems, calibration facilities, a turntable and extensive condition monitoring. The tunnel and all associated capabilities operate under full computer control, enabling prolonged unmanned operation.

  • Thermally stratified
  • Twin fans, suck through
  • Working section: 20L x 3.5W x 1.5H m
  • Overall length: 27.2 m
Air speed range
  • 0.3 to 3.0 m/s
Inlet heater
  • Number of layers: 15 at 0.1 m spacing
  • Maximum heating rate: 400 kW
  • Maximum temperature gradient: 80 °C/m
  • Maximum bulk temperature rise: 80 °C
Roof/floor panel performance
  • Maximum heating rate: 2 kW/sq. m
  • Maximum surface temperature: 120 °C
  • Maximum cooling rate: 1 kW/sq. m
  • Minimum surface temperature: 5 °C
Side panel performance
  • Number of heating zones: 3 at 0.5 m
  • Maximum heating rate: 0.2 kW/sq m

Research facilities

Other research facilities available include:

  • Fully-automated laboratory measurement instrumentation suite which includes multi-axis Particle-image velocimetry, laser-doppler anemometry and flame-ionization concentration sensors
  • Advanced sensor systems for the characterisation of turbulent flows.
Students working a formula one car

Department facilities

Our Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences has various available facilities including an Innovation for Health Learning Laboratory, virtual reality equipment and mechanical testing facility.