A large diameter diaphragmless shock tube designed to drive gas-dynamic laser (GDL) experiments has been newly developed. A diaphragmless structure is used in place of a rupturing diaphragm from which normal shock waves are formed. The details of engineering design are described and the role of such a structure in generating repeatable shock waves is discussed. Improvements in the diaphragmless structure, which have ensured consistent and reliable operation, are discussed as well. The experimental GDL device driven by this shock tube is introduced. Characteristics of incident and reflected shock waves propagating in the diaphragmless shock tube and its performance are experimentally investigated. Variations of laser output power and energy with incident-shock Mach
number in a 0.3 CO2 + 0.7 N2 mixture are preliminarily reported.
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