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First spacecraft demise workshop - Test case description and results

Martin Spel 1 Vincent Rivola 1 Bastien Plazolles 2, 1
2 LAAS-CDA - Équipe Calcul Distribué et Asynchronisme
LAAS - Laboratoire d'analyse et d'architecture des systèmes
Abstract : In order to assess the ground risk of spacecraft operations that should comply with national and international space law regulations, a large number of spacecraft demise tools have recently been developed. In order to treat the complexity of the physical processes involved, different approaches are followed, from low fidelity "object oriented" tools, to higher fidelity "spacecraft oriented" tools. The lack of experimental data and the multidisciplinary aspect of the process make the validation and verification a challenging task. Many codes are based on simplified methods, often a heritage of research performed in the '60s for nuclear missile re-entry. However at that time, the uncertainty margins applied were such to favour a safe entry. For spacecraft risk assessment the uncertainty margins however should be the opposite. Todays computational means allow techniques such as computational fluid dynamics and thermal analysis codes to verify the models used in current tools. In the current paper we present an initiative to enlarge the available data for validation and verification of spacecraft demise software. A collaborative initiative in the form of a workshop, common practice in the aeronautical industry (drag prediction workshop, SPICES, etc), is proposed. The initiative allows comparing between different tools and to assess the uncertainties between different codes and different disciplines for incorporation by a statistical approach. The various disciplines involved have been separated in three groups: integration, where we compare between different codes the complete process of entry; thermal, where we study the thermal time evolutions for imposed heat fluxes, and aerothermal, where we study the heat fluxes and aerodynamic coefficients for a fixed reentry condition. At later stages those disciplines could be extended by, for example, ablation or flight mechanics test cases. The present paper describes the proposed test cases for the different disciplines, and presents a comparison of the main results obtained by the different participants to the first spacecraft demise workshop.
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Martin Spel, Vincent Rivola, Bastien Plazolles. First spacecraft demise workshop - Test case description and results. 8th European Symposium on Aerothermodynamics for Space Vehicles, Mar 2015, Lisbonne, Portugal. 8p. ⟨hal-02175370⟩

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