Meet Our Students


Sally W. Warning


Advisor/Mentor: Mark McQuilling
Sponsor/Grant: Parks College
Program Start: Fall 2010



Sally Warning graduated with her B.S. in Aerospace Engineering in 2010 and her M.S. in Engineering in 2012, both from Saint Louis University. As an undergraduate, she was part of the Division 1 women’s volleyball team and continued playing at the club level during her M.S. degree. Sally began her Ph.D. in Engineering in the fall of 2012; a leadership change in 2014 brought an exciting twist to her project scope as she became the lead designer for a new polysonic wind tunnel that was installed in the spring of 2016.


Engines of military aircraft typically require low speeds to operate. When travelling supersonic (faster than the speed of sound) a series of shock waves (superimposed sound waves) within the engine inlet compresses and decelerates the air to subsonic velocities (less than the speed of sound). However, complications arise when a shock wave meets the boundary layer that forms along the inlet surfaces. A boundary layer is low momentum flow that is dominated by viscous effects and is extremely sensitive to the abrupt changes in air properties imposed by the shock wave. The performance of the engine can be compromised by this interaction, which is the focus of Warning’s research. A test section was designed to be used in the new polysonic wind tunnel in order to experimentally study this engine inlet phenomenon.