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Flow Visualization Systems

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Flow visualization is an important part of fluid mechanics research. It is a powerful technique used for fluid flow research. Flow visualization provides good insight to the flow analysis and is often used as the pre-cursor for more sophisticated quantitative measurements.


Oftentimes, the process of flow visualization is the first step in obtaining a more detailed flow analysis. Flow visualization can start with a simple system arrangement, using a camera and an illumination system, in order to obtain the general understanding of the flow structure and behavior.  Once the information of the flow is captured, more sophisticated systems can be employed to provide the analytical study of the flow field. For example, a PIV, LDV or HWA system can be employed to study the quantitative velocity profile at some strategic areas identified by the flow visualization results.  



             Flow visualization of a droplet ligament formation 


          Horse Shoe Steamlines

Flow visualization of horseshoe vortices upstream of a wall-mounted cylinder    



  • Obtain a good understanding of the flow structure
  • Help solve practical problems
  • Simple to use and cost effective
  • No calibration and synchronization required
  • Upgradeable to Planar PIV, Stereo PIV,  volumetric PIV (V3V) and more sophisticated quantitative systems

 There are different arrangements for flow visualization, depending on the hardware used for the procedure. Planar or volumetric illumination determines the visualization region, while the camera sets up the image capture speed.  Consequently, the results can be the evolution of a flow pattern in a plane or the flow movement in a volume, as shown above.

 The table below shows some of the major system components for flow visualization.

Spec table - flow visualization

Please see the specification sheets for details on the various cameras, illumination systems and software.






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