Windtech’s New Blockage Tolerant Wind TunnelPosted on October 28, 2022
Windtech Consultants are pleased to announce the successful reconfiguration of its third wind tunnel test section to be blockage tolerant. Various codes of practice recommend limiting the blockage in the wind tunnel due to the effect of the model to within 8% or 10% to avoid distortion of the flow around the study building and the effect this would have on the wind effects being investigated.
Windtech’s third wind tunnel is now able to generate higher speeds at the test section without impacting the scale of models that can be tested. Validation tests were undertaken to compare against observed full scale measurements of the facade cladding pressures from the Texas Tech Experimental Building.
The first step in the validation involved testing a number of model scales of the Texas Tech Building, generating blockage ratios from 1% to 8%. The results show very good agreement against the full scale data for all these scales. This step is important to establish that all these scales of the boundary layer wind profiles in the wind tunnel are accurate and do not contribute to any deviation.
The second phase of the validation was to extend the shape of the scale models along a particular axis to generate blockage ratios of 5%, 13%, 17% and 21%. The results show that the blockage tolerant wind tunnel configuration is able to maintain consistent results (within 10%) with a blockage of up to 13% in the case of cladding pressures and up to 21% in the case of overall drag loads.
Windtech Consultants owns three state of the art wind tunnel facilities and has access to a fourth wind tunnel. This allows us to provide our clients with a high quality and timely service.
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