Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Richard J. McMullan, PhD


Hypersonic flight using scramjet propulsion bridges the gap between turbojets and rockets. Recent efforts focus on magnetogasdynamic (MGD) flow control to mitigate the problems of high thermomechanical loads and low efficiencies associated with scramjets. This research is the first flight-scale, three-dimensional computational analysis of a realistic scramjet to assess how MGD flow control improves scramjet performance. Developing a quasi-one dimensional design tool culminated in the first open source scramjet geometry. This geometry was tested with the Air Force Research Laboratory's electromagnetic computational code. To increase fidelity, an algorithm was developed to incorporate thermochemistry, resulting in the only open-source model of combustion in an MGD controlled engine. A control volume analysis with electron beam ionization was presented for the first time with this approach. Local MGD control within the inlet affected drag and heat transfer and was marginally successful in raising combustor inflow pressure. MGD acceleration to increase flow momentum was effective at improving flow into the scramjet's isolator. Combustor-based MGD generators proved superior to inlet generators with respect to power density and engine efficiency. MGD acceleration was ineffective in improving performance with all the MGD engines having approximately 33% more drag than baseline and none of them achieving self-powered operation state.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number