Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology
Tech Info Library

Can your force sensors be used in a test section of a wind tunnel for educational demonstrations?

Yes, you can. Of the various force sensors we make, the ones most suitable for a wind tunnel investigation would be our Dual-Range Force Sensor, order code DFS-BTA, $109 and Go Direct® Force and Acceleration Sensor, order code GDX-FOR, $99. If you want to measure more than one force at once (i.e. lift and drag), you will need multiple force sensors.

In general, you can think of our force sensors as similar to spring scales, but they read force and relay it to a computer or mobile device for graphing and analysis. Some considerations when setting them up to work in a wind tunnel:
* Our force sensors may not be sensitive enough, depending on the magnitude of the forces generated. For instance, the Dual-Range Force Sensor's most sensitive range is 10 Newtons. You should give some thought to the magnitude of the forces you would be measuring.
* If the size of the air foils and wind speeds you are investigating generate extremely small forces (relative to the force sensor measurement range), you may need to use a lever system to increase the force or you may need a more sensitive probe than ours.

Our Go Direct® Force and Acceleration Sensor, order code GDX-FOR, $99 can connect via Bluetooth or USB to a device running our Graphical Analysis 4 app. The Dual-Range Force Sensor, order code DFS-BTA, $109 requires an interface (such as a LabQuest 2, order code LABQ2, $329 or LabQuest Stream, order code LQ-STREAM, $199) to connect to a computer or mobile device.

Here are two web pages with information concerning the construction of a wind tunnel:

http://arxiv.org/abs/physics/0208039

https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/references/how-to-build-a-wind-tunnel#testsection

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