DBD plasma actuators have several applications within the field of active flow control. Separation control, wake control, aircraft noise reduction, modification of velocity fluctuations or boundary layer control are just some examples of their applications. They present several attractive features such as, their simple construction, very low mass, fast response, low power consumption and robustness. Besides their aerodynamic applications, these devices have also possible applications within the field of heat transfer, for example film cooling applications. However, due to the extremely high electric fields in the plasma region and consequent impossibility of applying intrusive techniques, there is a relative lack of information about DBDs thermal characteristics. In an attempt to contradict this scenario, this work describes the thermal behaviour of DBD plasma actuators. The total power consumed, the fraction of power that is dissipated as heat energy and the dielectric temperature variation due to the plasma operation are some parameters with great interest in any plasma actuator applications. Thus, these parameters were quantified and the results were presented and discussed. Infra-red thermography measurements were performed in order to obtain the temperature distribution of the dielectric layer. During this work we analysed DBD plasma actuators with different dielectric thicknesses and also with different dielectric materials, whose thermal behaviour was not reported in the literature yet. Conclusions were taken in order to extend the fundamental knowledge on the thermal aspects of the DBD plasma actuators.

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