Experiment and Simulation on the Dynamics of a Slug of Liquid Oxygen Displaced by a Pulsed Magnetic Field

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Boulware, Jeffrey C.
liquid oxygen; magnetic fluid; Mechanical Engineering
thesis / dissertation description
A magnetic fluid system could potentially replace mechanically moving parts in a satellite as a means of increasing system reliability and mission lifetime, but rather than a standard ferrofluid with magnetic particles, liquid oxygen (LOX) may be a more adequate working fluid. As a pure paramagnetic cryogen, LOX is already heavily used in space, but still requires basic research before being integrated into system development. The objectives of the research conducted were to verify LOX as a magnetic working fluid through experiment and establish a theoretical model to describe its behavior. This dissertation presents the theoretical, experimental, and numerical results of a slug of LOX being pulsed by a 1.1 T solenoid in a quartz tube with an inner diameter of 1.9 mm. The slug oscillated about the solenoid at 6-8 Hz, producing a pressure change of up to 1.2 kPa. System efficiency based on the Mason number was also studied for various geometric setups, and, using a one-dimensional, finite-differenced model in Matlab 2008a, the numerical analyses confirmed the theoretical model. The research provides groundwork for future applied studies with complex designs.