Thermally Induced Measurement Error by a Water-Cooled Enthalpy Probe

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Errors in stagnation-pressure measurement, due to a large temperature gradient at the face of a water-cooled enthalpy probe, were experimentally measured and numerically simulated. Two probes were used to measure the stagnation-pressure in a dc plasma jet; a standard water-cooled enthalpy probe and an uncooled ceramic (Thoria) probe. There was a maximum difference of 10% between the two measurements, with the water-cooled probe measuring lower pressures. Numerical simulations of plasma flow around the probe showed that the magnitude of the error depends on the thickness of the thermal boundary layer. The measurement error causes a maximum of 3% error in velocity measurements, using the Bernoulli equation. This error is no worse than other measurement errors associated with water-cooled enthalpy probe meaurements.

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