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Hypervelocity Spherically-Blunted Cone Flows in Mars Entry Ground Testing

Matthew G. Leibowitz, Joanna M. Austin

Abstract: Bow-shock standoff distances over sphere and spherically-blunted cone geometries were examined through experiments in two facilities capable of high-stagnation enthalpy hypersonic flows simulating Mars planetary entry conditions. High-speed and high-resolution schlieren images were obtained in the California Institute of Technology T5 reflected shock tunnel and the Hypervelocity Expansion Tube to examine facility independence of the measurements. Accompanying reacting Navier–Stokes simulations were carried out. A recently developed unified model for sphere and sphere–cone behavior was first verified for high-stagnation enthalpy CO2 flows through simulations with thermal and chemical nonequilibrium. Shock standoff distance measurements in both facilities were found to be in good agreement with model predictions. The need to account for the divergence of the streamlines in conical nozzles was highlighted and an existing model extended to account for changes in shock curvature between parallel and conical flows. The contributions of vibrational and chemical nonequilibrium to the stagnation-line density profile were quantified using the simulation results comparing three chemical kinetic models.
Keywords: Mars / model / stagnation / shock / flows / behavior / sphere / simulations / T5 reflected / chemical kinetic

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