Skip to content


Imperial College London

The Hypersonic Wind Tunnel at Imperial College has a test section of 0.6 m diameter and 1 m length, and capable of M number of 9. It can accommodate slender models 800+ mm in length.

Test Section 1 size:
0.6 (diameter) x 1 m. Tunnel can accommodate models 800+ mm long if slender.
Operational Status:
Undergoing maintenance
Test support:
Fully equipped workshop for wind tunnel model design, CNC 4-axis mill, CNC 3-axis mill, CNC Lathe, CNC etching and cutting, a range of rapid prototyping manufacture and modification capability, 3D CAD support and drafting.
Intermittent impulsive facility
Mach Number: 9
Working gas: Nitrogen
Maximum Flow Speed: Mach 9
Reynolds No: 7-47 x 10⁶ m¯¹ (variable)
Total Pressure: 600 bar (max, variable)
Temperature: 1150 K (max, variable)
Run Time: 20 ms
Typical Recharge Time: 1 hr
Testing Capabilities:
Model Support: Can accommodate slender models 800+ mm in length, giving a unique (in the UK) capability for achieving high test Reynolds numbers
Data Acquisition: 64 channel high speed (100 kHz) DAQ with potential for further 32 channels, high speed Schlieren, surface pressure, hot films, thermographic liquid crystal, PIV & PLIF (currently in development)
Specialist Rigs:
Numerous fundamental axis-symmetric rigs (e.g. compression ramp / cowl) for studies of SWBLI, with and without shock-induced separation.
Transition: e.g. Cone with roughness elements – producing laminar and transitional flows, characterisation of turbulent spot.
Cavity flows.
Optical laser-based diagnostics: Toluene-based PIV / PLIF currently under development.
3-c LDA System (Dantec)
Traverse system (Micromech)
High Speed Camera for Schlieren (Dantec)
Optics (high quality) Low FPS Video Camera / Lenses / Mirrors / rails / mounts / HDRecorder
High-speed laser PIV (Aerotech/Flow Dynamic)
Laser 3rd / 4th Harmonic capable Nd:YAG (to produce 266nm / 355 nm light for fluorescence measurements, e.g. molecular tagging / scalarmeasurements etc.) (Dantec)
Low Noise Camera for fluorescence type measurements (Dantec/Vision Research)
Intensified Camera for low photon measurements (Dantec/Vision Research)