General Study of Optimum Aerodynamic Shapes in Supersonic, Hypersonic, and Free-Molecular Flow.
RICE UNIV HOUSTON TX AERO-ASTRONAUTICS GROUP
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This document summarizes the research performed on aerodynamic configurations optimum for flight in the supersonic, hypersonic, and free-molecular flow regimes. The methods of the calculus of variations in one or two independent variables are employed in order to determine configurations having minimum drag, minimum ballistic factor, or maximum lift-to-drag ratio. Both nonlifting vehicles and lifting vehicles are analyzed. Constraints are imposed on geometric quantities such as length, thickness, volume, wetted area, or frontal area. The main analytical results, published in 26 reports and 16 articles, are summarized. Author
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