Low Speed Aerodynamic Wind Tunnel
Type: Closed loop
Velocity range: 10 - 60 m/s
Test section size: 1.2m x 0.8m
Atmospheric Wind Tunnel
Type: Open loop (turbulent boundary layer)
Velocity range: 0 - 15 m/s
Test section size: 0.94 m x 1.145 m
Two-phase modular tube in tube heat exchanger
Vapour compression cycle (for R-134a, R-407C, R-22) featuring modular test section that can be operated in either evaporator or condensation mode. System features scroll compressor (10 kW cooling capacity), electronic expansion valves, tube-in-tube condenser/evaporator (featuring smooth-, helical micro-fin-, or herringbone micro-fin tubes), pre-condenser(or pre-evaporator), post-condenser (or post-evaporator), sub-cooler, servo-controlled water flow valves, four coriolis flow meters, six pressure transducers, 48 temperature channels (Pt-100 or thermocouples), six centrifugal water pumps, high-pressure sight glasses, high-speed video camera, and capacitive void fraction sensor.
Single-phase tube-in-tube heat exchanger Single-phase experimental set-up (for water, water/brine mixtures) featuring tube-in-tube test section with three different types of inlet configurations (bell-mouth, re-entrant, and square-edged). Test sections tested are smooth tube, helical micro-fin tube and herringbone micro-fin tube. System features two servo-controlled water pumps, three coriolis flow meters, two pressure transducers, Validyne pressure selector (48 channels), 30 thermocouple channels, water flow valves, four coriolis flow meters, six centrifugal water pumps, computerized control and data acquisition system. Tests can be conducted in the Reynolds number range of 100 - 4500, Prandlt number range: 2 - 8, flow regimes: laminar, transitional and turbulent flow.
Sasol Laboratory for Structural Mechanics
The Sasol Laboratory for Structural Mechanics is home to the structural fatigue, structural dynamics and vehicle dynamics research in the department. The laboratory is equipped with an excellent infrastructure of servo-hydraulic testing machines and controllers, and is able to perform complex multi-actuator tests as well as simple single axis tests.
Facilities include 100 kN and 630 kN Schenck Hydropuls testing machines, an assortment of smaller servo-hydraulic actuators, various Zwick Roell servocontrollers, sophisticated test software, and a 8 m x 9 m isolated test block with Stolle Plates for the setting up of large multi-actuator tests.
The laboratory has recently also acquired a Polytec Scanning Laser vibrometer.
Vibration monitoring research has prompted the development of a variety of rotating machine fault simulators, which are used in the accelerated testing of machine elements and the development of new vibration monitoring.
The vibration testing facilities in the laboratory include various SigLab, Spider and National Instruments multi-channel data-acquisitioning systems with an assortment of electro-dynamic actuators, vibration sensors including micro-accelerometers and seismic accelerometers, displacement transducers, force transducers, as well as telemetry and GPS systems for vehicle response measurement.
The most recent acquisitions include high speed cameras, acoustic camera and GOM's 3D metrology system for vibration analysis.
Facilities are provided where students can work on their various projects ranging from first year to post graduate students. The facilities are divided into two areas namely the student workshop and the precision workshop. All services in this workshop are provided by means of technical assistance from a qualified toolmaker. Supervision in the form of qualified artisans is available in the student workshop during office hours. The typical equipment available for the students includes:
- CNCs : 2 multiple axis CNC machines
- Lathes: 5 mechanical and 2 numerical control
- Milling machines: 5 mechanical and 3 numerical control
- Surface grinders: 2
- Bench grinders: 5
- Guillotine: 1 (2.5 x 6 mm plate)
- Bending brake: 1 (2.5 mm x 5 mm plate)
- Various other small equipment
- Welding equipment
All mechanical undergraduate and post-graduate students have access to three computer centers (each containing a number of labs) which are located in close proximity on Main Campus. These centers collectively provide access to 492 computers.
Mechanical engineers also have access to the Mining Industry Study Centre.