NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Aeroassist Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE:Hybrid Computational Model for High-Altitude Aeroassist Vehicles

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Combustion Research and Flow Technology,
6210 Kellers Church Road
Pipersville, PA 18947-1020
(215) 766-1520

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Richard G. Wilmoth
124 Burnham Place
Newport News, VA  18947-1020
(757) 595-7315

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The proposed effort addresses a need for accurate computational models to support aeroassist and entry vehicle system design over a broad range of flight conditions including direct entry and aerocapture trajectories for manned and unmanned earth return and planetary exploration. These models are critical for assessing aerodynamic characteristics including reaction control systems (RCS) influences and for designing thermal protection systems involving both ablating and non-ablating materials. A hybrid approach unifying continuum CFD and rarefied DSMC flow solvers will be developed that can handle both higher altitude continuum flows, i.e. 60~85km, with embedded rarefied zones such as the base/near-wake region as well as higher altitude rarefied flows with embedded continuum zones such as RCS jet plumes. The proposed model will automatically separate continuum and rarefied regions into distinct computational domains employing a unique methodology demonstrated in Phase I to construct hybrid interface surfaces for complex three-dimensional geometries. The model will incorporate RCS jet and advanced ablative models and will provide consistent nonequilibrium thermochemical modeling between the CFD and DSMC solutions. This methodology provides a more efficient and accurate tool than provided by continuum CFD or DSMC alone and provides the flexibility to address a wide range of vehicle and system designs.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The new software to be developed in this program directly supports the design of aeroassist and planetary entry vehicle systems, providing improved accuracy over existing software. As such, it will serve to reduce design costs and produce more reliable designs. Specific NASA programs supported include Constellation which involves a number of LEO and Lunar return missions based on CEV, COTS which provides manned and unmanned service to and from ISS, and New Millenium which involves a number of planetary entry and sample return missions including technology demonstrations. Since the hybrid software builds upon existing DSMC software (DAC) now used by NASA and its contractors, the resultant product will have overall features which should facilitate its widespread usage as ascertained in discussions with key personnel at varied NASA Centers.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The resultant software for analyzing higher altitude problems is of widespread interest to DOD and their contractors, as well as to commercial firms involved in satellite station operation, contamination effects and nano-processes. We are presently involved in DOD programs where such hybrid technology is of interest for RV discrimination (MDA), for plume/divert jet signature predictions (AF/MDA), and for sensor/seeker window blinding/contamination by divert jets on interceptor missiles at rarefied altitudes (Army). We are engaged in active discussions with Orbital Sciences, Loral, Ball AeroSpace, and Lockheed Martin regarding use of this new hybrid technology to support varied DOD related and commercial activities.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Simulation Modeling Environment

Form Printed on 07-25-06 17:04