Navier-stokes solutions with surface catalysis for martian atmospheric entry

Y. K. Chen, W. D. Henline, D. A. Stewart, G. V. Candler

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70 Scopus citations


In this study numerical solutions have been obtained for axisymmetric hypersonic nonequilibrium CO2flow over a large-angle blunt cone with appropriate surface boundary conditions to account for energy and mass conservation at the body surface. The flowfield is described by the Navier-Stokes equations and multicomponent conservation laws that account for both translational and internal vibrational nonequilibrium effects. Complete forebody solutions have been obtained for the peak heating point of the Mars entry trajectory specified in the proposed NASA MESUR (Mars Environmental Survey) project. In these solutions, radiative equilibrium wall temperature and surface heating distributions are determined over the MESUR aeroshell forebody with varying degrees of surface catalysis. The aeroshell nose radius is 0.425 m, and freestream conditions occur at an altitude of 41,668 m, ambient density of 0.2687 x 10-3kg/m3, and velocity of 6155 m/s. The effects of gas kinetics, surface catalysis, and transport properties on' the surface heating are examined. The results identify some important issues in the prediction of surface heating for flows in thermochemical nonequilibrium and show that the Navier-Stokes code used herein provides useful information for thermal protection system design and materials selection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-42
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Spacecraft and Rockets
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1993


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