1989-09-01

Hypersonic CFD Applications for the National Aero-Space Plane 892310

The design and analysis of the National Aerospace Plane (NASP) depends heavily on developing critical technology areas through the Technology Maturation Program (TMP). The TMP is being completed almost entirely in government laboratories with technology dissemination to all prime NASP contractors immediately upon completion of any portion of the technology development. These critical technology areas span the entire engineering design of the vehicle; included are structures, materials, propulsion systems, propellants, propulsion/airframe integration, controls, subsystems, and aerodynamics areas.There is currently a heavy dependence on Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) for verification of many of the classical engineering tools. Quite often the design of an aircraft uses wind tunnel tests for much of this verification, but for NASP, this task is almost impossible from a practical standpoint. The NASP vehicle must take off from a conventional run way and fly to orbit using air-breathing propulsion. Due to the complexity of the vehicle, the lack of currently available wind tunnel facilities to investigate in much of the hypersonic flight regime, the many flow regimes experienced during a typical NASP ascent trajectory, and time constraints placed on the pro gram, the dependence on CFD for NASP is quite significant.

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