Supersonic Flow

Lecturer(s): Didier DRAGNA, Marc JACOB
Course ⋅ 16 hTC ⋅ 16 hPW ⋅ 2 hAutonomy ⋅ 10 hStudy ⋅ 4 h


This course is devoted to high velocity compressible flows and to the study of pressure waves, expansion waves and shock waves. It is an extension of the core course Fluids and Energy and aims at deepening the knowledge in gas dynamics. Applications mainly concern external aerodynamics around high speed vehicles.

Palabras clave

Compressible flow, Supersonic flow, Shock waves, Expansion waves



  • Conservation laws.
  • Quasi-one-dimensional flows.
  • Normal shock waves.
  • Two-dimensional flows.
  • Oblique shock waves and expansion waves.
  • Interactions and unsteady waves.
  • Linearized flows.

Learning Outcomes

  • Determine the behavior of a compressible fluid subjected to thermal or mechanical stresses.
  • Design a convergent-divergent nozzle under different downstream conditions.
  • Determine the flow structures developing around an obstacle in a supersonic flow.
  • Perform a comparative and critical analysis of experimental, numerical and analytical results.


Final mark = 0.65Knowledge + 0.35Know-how Knowledge = final exam Know-how = continuous assessment