33th Congress of the International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences

03.4 - Applied Aerodynamics


A. Aprovitolaš, N. Montellaš, L. Iuspaš, G. Pezzellaš, A. Vivianiš; šUniversity of Campania , Italy

Design of future generation reusable re-entry vehicles is unavoidably dictated by the adopted re-entry strategy for thermal barrier, range, and cross-range managements, especially for lifting returns [1]. In this case, in fact, enhanced aerodynamic performances allow for a gentler aerothermal loading environment and with long range and wide cross-range re-entry trajectories. In this framework, the paper provides a detailed aerodynamic and aerothermodynamic analysis of a lifting-body aeroshape obtained by means of a multidisciplinary design optimization (MDO), where vehicle configuration and re-entry strategy are mutually integrated in the spacecraft design. Several Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations are carried out to address the aerothermal loading environment (i.e., pressure and convective heat flux loads) the unconventional optimum lifting-body aeroshape must withstand during descent. Reynolds Average Navier-Stokes Simulation (RANS) with both perfect gas and thermo-chemical non-equilibrium air computations are addressed to assess the flowfield that takes place past the vehicle at low-speed (e.g., landing phase) and high-speed (e.g., hypersonic flight) conditions, respectively. Flowfield simulations are carried out on both multiblock structured and hybrid grids. Finally, force and moment coefficients are evaluated to build-up the aerodynamic database of the spacecraft and to address the vehicle static stability in both longitudinal and lateral-directional flight conditions.

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