Cavitation Research Facility

The cavitation tunnel installed at the Laboratory for Hydraulic Machines provides high speed visualization of various types of cavitation phenomena, including leading edge cavitation, wake cavitation, and tip vortex :

  • Cavitation nuclei control
  • 5 components load cell
  • Optical instrumentation: particle image velocimetry, Laser Doppler velocimetry
  • High speed visualization
  • Pressure transducers

Cavitation Tunnel


Cavitation Tunnel Characteristics

Pumping Power [kW] 500
Test Section [m] 0.15 x 0.15 x 0.75
Flow Velocity [m/s] ≤ 50
Pressure [Pa] ≤ 16.105
Reynolds ≤ 5.106
Convergence Ratio 46
Turbulence Intensity ≤ 3 ‰

The cavitation tunnel can be used to investigate :

  • Onset, development and collapse
  • Modeling and control
  • Materials erosion and bio effects

Cavitation experiments 

Some examples of experiments in the cavitation tunnel

(a) U-shaped vortex cavitation shedding from a leading edge cavity.
(b) Last stages of vortex collapse, followed by shock waves, 500,000 fps
(c) SEM photography of Stellite 21 indentation by a cavitation single impact