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April 4, 2022 "Hypersonic Instrumentation and Thermal Protection System (TPS) Material Characterization "

  • 4:00 p.m.
  • Virtual
  • Dr. Daniel Simmons
  • Host: Dr. Pat Artis

Abstract:  Thermal protection systems (TPS) are a critical enabling technology that protects space vehicles from the extreme aerothermodynamic heating experienced during launch and re-entry. Ablative TPS manages heat by loss of material, which will increase surface roughness, leading to energy inefficiencies, early boundary layer transition, and control issues. If not carefully balanced, these factors can lead to runaway failure modes and even critical vehicle failure. 

Dr. Simmon's will present on Ahmic’s latest and upcoming test programs at the NASA Ames Arc Jet Complex. Ahmic has recently developed instrumentation and test methodologies to characterize TPS material response under roughened and ablative conditions. These data will inform future test methods and enable a safe reduction in TPS design conservatism, thus lowering vehicle launch costs and reducing barriers to space access. Dr. Simmon's will also share his experience with other hypersonic instrumentation, ground-test facilities, and flight vehicles.

Bio:  Dr. Simmons received his PhD from Notre Dame and was the principal investigator on the TPS ablation/arc-jet sensor test program that will be the subject of the seminar.