University of Oxford Hypersonics Group High Density Tunnel
20 Nov 2018




The High-Density Tunnel (HDT) is a reconfigured and upgraded facility from the original RAE shock tube, acquired by the University of Oxford in 2012. It operates either as a Ludwieg tunnel or a Light Piston Compression Heating facility, producing cold hypersonic flow conditions with test times long enough to investigate unsteady flow effects. This facility is part of the National Wind Tunnel Facility partnership

Operating as a Hypersonic Heated Ludwieg Tube it has a section size 0.35 m diameter, Mach number 3 – 9 and a maximum flow speed of 3 km/s.

  • Model Support: Remote actuated support (+/- 20˚ AoA and +/-10˚AoA).
  • Data Acquisition: NI PXI –128 channels @ 2 MHz/channel. 4 Channel Oscilloscope up 5 GHz. Free flight DAQ up to 6 channels, 20 kHz.
  • Measurement hardware: Megahertz Schlieren imaging at full HD resolution, laser-based optics, high response pressure transducers, high response bespoke thin film heat transfer gauges, hot wire anemometer, FLDI, high current and voltage power supplies.
HDT.png   Oxford High Density Tunnel facility


  • Cold hypersonic flow facility for steady and unsteady aerothermodynamic testing
  • Test durations up to 70 ms
  • 6.5 m long, 152 mm diameter driver
  • 17.4 m long, 152 mm diameter barrel
  • Mach 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 contoured nozzles

Actuated traverse +/- 15 deg AoA. +/- 5 deg AoY

High Density Tunnel Schematic