Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, MIT
Friday, October 23, 2015
lasmas can be used to address several challenges in the Aerospace field, particularly with regard to propulsion and aerodynamic applications. On the one hand, non-equilibrium chemistry triggered by non-thermal plasmas can be used to ignite, stabilize and enhance combustion under adverse situations, such as ultra-lean or supersonic conditions. On the other hand, the response of ionized species to electric fields can be used to control aerodynamic flows or to manipulate flames. This overview of the ways plasmas can be used to assist combustion and aerodynamics will also evaluate how the environment of a flame impacts electrical breakdown and electrical energy coupling. Current research efforts on other aerospace problems that involve gas discharges and plasmas will be briefly discussed.
Carmen Guerra is a Postdoctoral Associate in the Aeronautics and Astronautics Dept. at MIT. She received an Engineer’s Degree in Aerospace from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain) in 2007, and M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from MIT in 2011 and 2014, respectively. Carmen’s research interests include a range of plasma problems in aerospace, including propulsion, plasma assisted combustion, ion acceleration, and, most recently, lightning strike to airborne vehicles. Carmen was awarded the First National Prize in Aeronautical Engineering studies in 2007 from the Ministry of Education of Spain and is a recipient of an International Fulbright Science and Technology Award 2009-2012.