Simulation of fluid-structure interaction of the Mars Science Laboratory parachute

Vladimyr Gidzak, Michael Barnhardt, Travis Drayna, Ioannis Nompelis, Graham V Candler, William Garrard

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The detached eddy simulation (DES) methodology is used to examine the flow field associated with the supersonic disk-gap-band parachute system of the Mars Science Laboratory mission. Prior study using a rigid parachute model found that the time-varying momentum deficit in the capsule wake interacts with the bow shock on the canopy, producing a highly unsteady flow. The simulations suggested that the resulting over- and under-pressurization cycle was responsible for the violent dynamics previously observed in this type of parachute and also the partial band collapse they often experience. In this study we present further validation of our methods from the rigid parachute tests. Additionally, we remove the restriction of a static geometry by developing a coupled fluid-structure simulation strategy. The dynamic response of the parachute is computed and coupled to the CFD by deforming the mesh according to the parachute's rigid body displacement. The computational and numerical method requirements for performing these unsteady simulations are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCollection of Technical Papers - AIAA Applied Aerodynamics Conference
StatePublished - Sep 15 2008
Event26th AIAA Applied Aerodynamics Conference - Honolulu, HI, United States
Duration: Aug 18 2008Aug 21 2008


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