Doctoral Dissertations


"This dissertation provides theoretical predictions along with experimental results for electron concentrations behind a shock as a function of Mach number over a range from 11 to 20 using a combustion driven shock tube operating in air. These theoretical predictions represent an upper bound for chemical equilibrium. The model for air was 78.0880% nitrogen, 20.949% oxygen, 0.0300% carbon dioxide, 0 .9300% argon, 0.0025%neon, and 0.0005% helium. Also the theory of a double diaphragm shock tube with corresponding pressure ratio vs. Mach number relationships is provided. A computor [sic] program using iterative techniques for a succinct presentation covering the modifications and deviations from the perfect gas theory for most simple mixtures of test gases is included. This program utilizes the latest available equilibrium constants for various gases. Also, this dissertation describes a technique which allows the electron concentration to be continuously monitored as a shock wave passes. The author designed and built the instrumentation for the operation of the shock tube and the monitoring of the electron concentration. This instrumentation included a high pressure gas handling system, velocity measurement techniques, and a laser interferometer for electron concentration measurements. To provide uniform monochromatic light across the beam, a continuously working Helium-Neon laser with a spatial filter was employed. The number of electrons per cubic centimeter behind the shock was measured at Mach numbers of 17.6 and 18.1. The data obtained did not represent accurate quantitative values of electron concentrations due to the unknown composition of the test gas. However, the experimental results demonstrated the reproducibility of the data with the system used"--Abstract, page ii."


Rhea, L. G.

Committee Member(s)

Oetting, R. B.
Sauer, Harry J., Jr., 1935-2008
Hill, Otto H.
Faucett, Terry R.
McDonald, H. O. (Hector O.)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Degree Name

Ph. D. in Mechanical Engineering


University of Missouri. Space Sciences Research Center
University of Missouri--Rolla. Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


University of Missouri--Rolla

Publication Date



viii, 138 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 122-123).


© 1970 Howard Sajon Joyner, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Shock (Mechanics)
Ionization of gases
Mach number

Thesis Number

T 2374

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #