NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 A2.06-9211
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Aerothermodynamics
PROPOSAL TITLE: Gas-Kinetic Computational Algorithms for Hypersonic Flows in Continuum and Transitional Regimes

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
3409 N. 42nd Place
Phoenix, AZ 85018 - 5961
(480) 518-0981

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Lei Tang
3409 N. 42nd Place
Phoenix, AZ 85018 - 5961
(480) 518-0981

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 2 to 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
This SBIR Phase I project explores two gas-kinetic computational algorithms for simulation of hypersonic flows in both continuum and transitional regimes. One is the gas-kinetic BGK-Burnett solver and the other is the gas-kinetic BGK solver with the regulated particle collision time. Different from the macroscopic Burnett approach, the proposed gas-kinetic BGK-Burnett solver is unconditionally stable for all Knudsen numbers. Whereas it is almost impossible to correctly set up boundary condition for the Burnett equations, this can be easily done in the proposed BGK-Burnett solver with the Maxwell boundary condition, re-emitting the particles from the boundary according to the accommodation coefficient. More importantly, this BGK-Burnett solver not only allows a single algorithm for both continuum and transitional flow regimes but also is more suitable for integration with either DSMC or direct Boltzmann solver in the rarefied flow regime. The gas-kinetic BGK solver with the regulated particle collision time can further reduce the computational costs over the BGK-Burnett solver. The focus of Phase I work is to determine the validity Knudsen number range of these two algorithms.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA current mission focuses on human lunar and martian exploration. The design of crew exploration vehicles requires the proposed computational tool, which is able to handle the flows beyond the continuum regime and thereby accurately predict shock stand-off distances, peaks in thermal loads, skin friction drag, forces and moments on the vehicles.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed gas-kinetic computational algorithms can significantly enhance the capability of aerospace industry to predict the aerothermal loads on a space vehicle. It can also be used to MEMS and nanotechnology applications.

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