Ablation Modeling for Dynamic Simulation of Reentry Vehicles (Preprint)
AIR FORCE RESEARCH LAB WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH AIR VEHICLES DIRECTORATE
Pagination or Media Count:
The collection of methods described in this manuscript can be used in a dynamic simulation to provide estimates of the mass properties and aerodynamic forces and moments as a reentry vehicle ablates due to aerodynamic heating. Vehicles that experience relatively low peak heating with reusable thermal protection systems such as the shuttle, experience little if any ablation. At the other extreme, ballistic reentry vehicles and interplanetary probes can experience very high peak heat loads that cause the thermal protection material to ablate. A number of vehicle characteristics change as a result of ablation. The mass properties of the vehicle change due to the loss of material and the aerodynamic forces and moments acting on the vehicle change as a result of the an ablating outer mold line OML. These changes can affect aerodynamic as well as guidance and control system performance. Empirical methods are described in this paper that can be used to translate limited test data into a rough, but representative model that can be used to estimate the effects of ablation on a vehicles ability to follow a prescribed trajectory and on guidance and control performance and robustness.
- Computer Programming and Software
- Guided Missile Trajectories, Accuracy and Ballistics