Case for a Multidisciplinary Modeling Platform for Space Launch Risk Analysis 2007-01-3864
With the development and licensing of inland, state-owned spaceports, and the ongoing development of several new reusable launch vehicles (RLV), the space launch industry is undergoing a significant transformation. As a result, there is a need to reevaluate current launch risk analysis methodologies and practices, which so far have revolved around the conservative casualty expectation analysis developed in the 1950s. Furthermore, an important aspect of launch risk analysis which gives rise to its complexity is its multidisciplinary nature. In analyzing such risk, the physics of and interactions between the varieties of hazards produced by launch vehicles breakups must be captured, modeled and, their effects analyzed. In this paper we discuss how a well-designed multidisciplinary modeling and analysis platform could be a significant step toward reducing the complexity just mentioned. Furthermore, such platform could provide a solid foundation for the development and implementation of more advanced launch risk analysis methodologies.