One year later, WinField United’s wind tunnel continues to foster innovation

Monday, December 16, 2019 - 2:00pm

A year in, WinField United’s spray wind tunnel has empowered the industry and academic collaboration necessary to advance our shared goals of addressing efficiency and environmental concerns facing farmers, the agriculture industry, and communities.

Housed in the Aerosol Diagnostics Laboratory, the wind tunnel has proven to be an invaluable resource for small-particle research at the University of Minnesota. A year after WinField United’s gift to the University, the wind tunnel has allowed students and faculty from across the College of Science and Engineering’s mechanical engineering department to launch innovative new projects. 

In the time since this gift, three laboratory groups—the Dutcher Group, the Hogan Lab, and the Hong Research Group—have begun research at the wind tunnel. This research includes sponsored projects in collaboration with WinField United. From studying droplet formation to improving our understanding of aerosol deposition on vegetation, this work furthers the U of M’s expertise in high-tech agriculture research while supporting tomorrow’s industrial workforce and enhancing our shared communities.

“For most students, it is their first exposure to large, industrial scale measurement systems,” notes Chris Hogan, professor and director of graduate studies in the mechanical engineering department. “They enjoy the projects using the wind tunnel because they combine cutting-edge measurement technologies to address real-world applications.”

Looking ahead to the future of the wind tunnel, Hogan shares a commitment to continued partnership with WinField United, and an intention to further leverage the wind tunnel as a resource: advancing our research capabilities in agricultural sprays, supporting students with an interest in agricultural engineering, and building upon a long history of particle technology expertise.

Thank you, WinField United!

Photo courtesy of the College of Science and Engineering