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Lucas Craig
Arash Moharreri
David C. Rogers
Bruce Anderson
, and
Suresh Dhaniyala


Interaction of liquid cloud droplets and ice particles with aircraft aerosol inlets can result in the generation of a large number of secondary particles and contaminate aerosol measurements. Recent studies have shown that a sampler designed with a perpendicular subsampling tube located within a flow-through conduit (i.e., a flow-restriction inlet) was best suited for in-cloud sampling. Analysis of field data obtained from different flow-restriction inlets shows that their critical cloud droplet breakup diameters are strongly dependent on design details and operating conditions. Using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations, in-cloud sampling performance of a selected inlet can be predicted reasonably accurately for known operating conditions. To understand the relation between inlet design parameters and its sampling performance, however, CFD calculations are impractical. Here, using a simple, representative one-dimensional velocity profile and a validated empirical droplet breakup criteria, a parametric study is conducted to understand the relationship between different inlet design features and operating conditions on its critical breakup diameters. The results of this study suggest that an optimal inlet for in-cloud aerosol sampling should have a combination of a restriction nozzle at the aft end of the flow-through conduit to minimize wall-impaction shatter artifacts and a blunt leading edge to minimize shatter artifact generation from the aerodynamic breakup of cloud droplets. Inlets for in-cloud aerosol sampling from aircraft will, therefore, differ significantly in design from those used for clear-air aerosol sampling.

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