Science.gov

Sample records for airbreathing laser propulsion

  1. Experimental investigation of a unique airbreathing pulsed laser propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myrabo, L. N.; Nagamatsu, H. T.; Manka, C.; Lyons, P. W.; Jones, R. A.

    1991-01-01

    Investigations were conducted into unique methods of converting pulsed laser energy into propulsive thrust across a flat impulse surface under atmospheric conditions. The propulsion experiments were performed with a 1-micron neodymium-glass laser at the Space Plasma Branch of the Naval Research Laboratory. Laser-induced impulse was measured dynamically by ballistic pendulums and statically using piezoelectric pressure transducers on a stationary impulse surface. The principal goal was to explore methods for increasing the impulse coupling performance of airbreathing laser-propulsion engines. A magnetohydrodynamic thrust augmentation effect was discovered when a tesla-level magnetic field was applied perpendicular to the impulse surface. The impulse coupling coefficient performance doubled and continued to improve with increasing laser-pulse energies. The resultant performance of 180 to 200 N-s/MJ was found to be comparable to that of the earliest afterburning turbojets.

  2. Numerical simulation of air-breathing mode laser propulsion by nanosecond laser pulse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Lei; Zhao, Shanghong; Chu, Xingchun; Yu, Kanmin; Ma, Lihua; Zhan, Shengbao; Li, Yunxia

    2009-07-01

    Based on Navier-Stokes equations, numerical simulations of air-breathing mode laser propulsion by nanosecond laser pulse are carried out. An analytical model of the thruster's inner flow involving the simple processing of the ignition zone is established. The evolvement of the laser sustained plasma shockwaves is systemic analyzed; also the effects of pulse energy and thruster's structure such as focal length, scale and open angle on propulsion performance are researched. The simulated results show that the focal length dominates among the structural factors of thruster in the propulsion by nanosecond laser pulse. The larger focal length leads to better propulsion performance. It is also evident that for single pulse propulsion, nanosecond laser pulse is better than microsecond laser pulse, the momentum coupling efficient achieved by the former is 2~5 times of the latter's, which is highly agree with the existing experimental results.

  3. Airbreathing Laser Propulsion Experiments with 1 {mu}m Terawatt Pharos III Laser: Part 1

    SciTech Connect

    Myrabo, L. N.; Lyons, P. W.; Jones, R. A.; Liu, S.; Manka, C.

    2011-11-10

    This basic research study examines the physics of airbreathing laser propulsion at the extreme flux range of 1-2x10{sup 11} W/cm{sup 2}--within the air breakdown threshold for l {mu}m radiation--using the terawatt PHAROS III neodymium-glass pulsed laser. Six different experimental setups were tested using a 34 mm line focus with 66 {mu}m focal waist, positioned near the flat impulse surface. The first campaign investigated impulse generation with the beam oriented almost normal to the target surface, with energies ranging from 23 to 376 J, and pulses of 5 to 30 ns FWHM. Air breakdown/ plasma dynamics were diagnosed with GOI cameras and color photography. Laser generated impulse was quantified with both vertical pendulums and piezoelectric pressure transducers using the standard performance metric, C{sub M}--the momentum coupling coefficient. Part 1 of this 2-part paper covers Campaign no. 1 results including laser plasma diagnostics, pressure gage and vertical pendulum data.

  4. Static and Hypersonic Experimental Analysis of Impulse Generation in Air-Breathing Laser-Thermal Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvador, Israel Irone

    The present research campaign centered on static and hypersonic experiments performed with a two-dimensional, repetitively-pulsed (RP) laser Lightcraft model. The future application of interest for this basic research endeavor is the laser launch of nano- and micro-satellites (i.e., 1-100 kg payloads) into Low Earth Orbit (LEO), at low-cost and "on-demand". This research began with an international collaboration on Beamed Energy Propulsion between the United States Air Force and Brazilian Air Force to conduct experiments at the Henry T. Nagamatsu Laboratory of Aerothermodynamics and Hypersonics (HTN-LAH). The laser propulsion (LP) experiments employed the T3 Hypersonic Shock Tunnel (HST), integrated with twin gigawatt pulsed Lumonics 620-TEA CO2 lasers to produce the required test conditions. Following an introduction of the pulsed laser thermal propulsion concept and a state-of-the-art review of the topic, the principal physical processes are outlined starting from the onset of the laser pulse and subsequent laser-induced air-breakdown, to the expansion and exhaust of the resulting blast wave. After installation of the 254 mm wide, 2D Lightcraft model into the T3 tunnel, static LP tests were performed under quiescent (no-flow) conditions at ambient pressures of 0.06, 0.15, 0.3 and 1 bar, using the T3 test-section/dump-tank as a vacuum chamber. Time-dependent surface pressure distributions were measured over the engine thrust-generating surfaces following laser energy deposition; the delivered impulse and momentum coupling coefficients (Cm) were calculated from that pressure data. A Schlieren visualization system (using a high-speed Cordin digital camera) captured the laser breakdown and blast wave expansion process. The 2D model's Cm performance of 600 to 3000 N/MW was 2.5-5x higher than theoretical projections available in the literature, but indeed in the realm of feasibility for static conditions. Also, these Cm values exceed that for smaller Lightcraft models

  5. Airbreathing Laser Propulsion Experiments with 1 {mu}m Terawatt Pharos IIILaser: Part 2

    SciTech Connect

    Myrabo, L. N.; Lyons, P. W.; Jones, R. A.; Liu, S.; Manka, C.

    2011-11-10

    This basic research study examines the physics of airbreathing laser propulsion at the extreme flux range of 1-2x10{sup 11} W/cm{sup 2}--within the air breakdown threshold for l {mu}m radiation--using the terawatt Pharos III neodymium-glass pulsed laser. Six different experimental setups were employed using a 34 mm line focus with 66 {mu}m focal waist, positioned near the flat impulse surface. The 2nd Campaign investigated impulse generation with the laser beam focused at grazing incidence across near horizontal target surfaces, with pulse energies ranging from 55 to 186 J, and pulse-widths of 2 to 30 ns FWHM. Laser generated impulse was measured with a horizontal Plexiglas registered ballistic pendulum equipped with either a steel target insert or 0.5 Tesla permanent magnet (NEIT-40), to quantify changes in the momentum coupling coefficient (C{sub M}). Part 2 of this 2-part paper covers Campaign no. 2 results including C{sub M} performance data, and long exposure color photos of LP plasma phenomena.

  6. Experimental Investigation of Airbreathing Laser Propulsion Engines: CO2TEA vs. EDL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mori, Koichi; Sasoh, Akihiro; Myrabo, Leik N.

    2005-04-01

    Single pulse laboratory experiments were carried out with a high-power CO2 Transversely-Exited Atmospheric (TEA) laser using parabolic laser propulsion (LP) engines of historic interest: 1) an original Pirri/ AERL bell engine, and 2) a scaled-up 11-cm diameter version with identical geometry. The objective was to quantify the effects of pulse duration upon the impulse coupling coefficient performance — with pulse energy as the parametric variable. Performance data from the TEA laser are contrasted with former results derived from AVCO Everett Research Laboratory and PLVTS CO2 electron discharge lasers (EDL). The `short-pulse' 2-microsecond TEA laser tests generated results that were distinctively different from that of the `long-pulse' EDL sources. The TC-300 TEA laser employed an unstable resonator to deliver up to 380 joules, and the square output beam measured 15-cm on a side, with a hollow 8-cm center. A standard ballistic pendulum was employed to measure the performance.

  7. Fluid dynamic problems associated with air-breathing propulsive systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chow, W. L.

    1979-01-01

    A brief account of research activities on problems related to air-breathing propulsion is made in this final report for the step funded research grant NASA NGL 14-005-140. Problems include the aircraft ejector-nozzle propulsive system, nonconstant pressure jet mixing process, recompression and reattachment of turbulent free shear layer, supersonic turbulent base pressure, low speed separated flows, transonic boattail flow with and without small angle of attack, transonic base pressures, Mach reflection of shocks, and numerical solution of potential equation through hodograph transformation.

  8. Innovative Airbreathing Propulsion Concepts for High-speed Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitlow, Woodrow, Jr.

    2002-01-01

    The current cost to launch payloads to low earth orbit (LEO) is approximately loo00 U.S. dollars ($) per pound ($22000 per kilogram). This high cost limits our ability to pursue space science and hinders the development of new markets and a productive space enterprise. This enterprise includes NASA's space launch needs and those of industry, universities, the military, and other U.S. government agencies. NASA's Advanced Space Transportation Program (ASTP) proposes a vision of the future where space travel is as routine as in today's commercial air transportation systems. Dramatically lower launch costs will be required to make this vision a reality. In order to provide more affordable access to space, NASA has established new goals in its Aeronautics and Space Transportation plan. These goals target a reduction in the cost of launching payloads to LEO to $lo00 per pound ($2200 per kilogram) by 2007 and to $100' per pound by 2025 while increasing safety by orders of magnitude. Several programs within NASA are addressing innovative propulsion systems that offer potential for reducing launch costs. Various air-breathing propulsion systems currently are being investigated under these programs. The NASA Aerospace Propulsion and Power Base Research and Technology Program supports long-term fundamental research and is managed at GLenn Research Center. Currently funded areas relevant to space transportation include hybrid hyperspeed propulsion (HHP) and pulse detonation engine (PDE) research. The HHP Program currently is addressing rocket-based combined cycle and turbine-based combined cycle systems. The PDE research program has the goal of demonstrating the feasibility of PDE-based hybrid-cycle and combined cycle propulsion systems that meet NASA's aviation and access-to-space goals. The ASTP also is part of the Base Research and Technology Program and is managed at the Marshall Space Flight Center. As technologies developed under the Aerospace Propulsion and Power Base

  9. An Overview of SBIR Phase 2 Airbreathing Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nguyen, Hung D.; Steele, Gynelle C.; Bitler, Dean W.

    2014-01-01

    Technological innovation is the overall focus of NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The program invests in the development of innovative concepts and technologies to help NASA's mission directorates address critical research and development needs for agency projects. This report highlights innovative SBIR Phase II projects from 2007-2012 specifically addressing areas in Airbreathing Propulsion which is one of six core competencies at NASA Glenn Research Center. There are twenty technologies featured with emphasis on a wide spectrum of applications such as with a Turbo-Brayton cryocooler for aircraft superconducting systems, braided composite rotorcraft structures, engine air brake, combustion control valve, flexible composite driveshaft, and much more. Each article in this booklet describes an innovation, technical objective, and highlights NASA commercial and industrial applications. This report serves as an opportunity for NASA personnel including engineers, researchers, and program managers to learn of NASA SBIR's capabilities that might be crosscutting into this technology area. As the result, it would cause collaborations and partnerships between the small companies and NASA Programs and Projects resulting in benefit to both SBIR companies and NASA.

  10. Combining MHD Airbreathing and Fusion Rocket Propulsion for Earth-to-Orbit Flight

    SciTech Connect

    Froning, H. D. Jr; Yang, Yang; Momota, H.; Burton, E.; Miley, G. H.; Luo, Nie

    2005-02-06

    Previous studies have shown that Single-State-to-Orbit (SSTO) vehicle propellant can be reduced by Magnets-Hydro-Dynamic (MHD) processes that minimize airbreathing propulsion losses and propellant consumption during atmospheric flight. Similarly additional reduction in SSTO propellant is enabled by Inertial Electrostatic Confinement (IEC) fusion, whose more energetic reactions reduce rocket propellant needs. MHD airbreathing propulsion during an SSTO vehicle's initial atmospheric flight phase and IEC fusion propulsion during its final exo-atmospheric flight phase is therefore being explored. Accomplished work is not yet sufficient for claiming such a vehicle's feasibility. But takeoff and propellant mass for an MHD airbreathing and IEC fusion vehicle could be as much as 25 and 40 percent less than one with ordinary airbreathing and IEC fusion; and as much as 50 and 70 percent less than SSTO takeoff and propellant mass with MHD airbreathing and chemical rocket propulsion. Thus this unusual combined cycle engine shows great promise for performance gains beyond contemporary combined-cycle airbreathing engines.

  11. Research in Hypersonic Airbreathing Propulsion at the NASA Langley Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kumar, Ajay; Drummond, J. Philip; McClinton, Charles R.; Hunt, James L.

    2001-01-01

    The NASA Langley Research Center has been conducting research for over four decades to develop technology for an airbreathing-propelled vehicle. Several other organizations within the United States have also been involved in this endeavor. Even though significant progress has been made over this period, a hypersonic airbreathing vehicle has not yet been realized due to low technology maturity. One of the major reasons for the slow progress in technology development has been the low level and cyclic nature of funding. The paper provides a brief historical overview of research in hypersonic airbreathing technology and then discusses current efforts at NASA Langley to develop various analytical, computational, and experimental design tools and their application in the development of future hypersonic airbreathing vehicles. The main focus of this paper is on the hypersonic airbreathing propulsion technology.

  12. Laser Propulsion - Quo Vadis

    SciTech Connect

    Bohn, Willy L.

    2008-04-28

    First, an introductory overview of the different types of laser propulsion techniques will be given and illustrated by some historical examples. Second, laser devices available for basic experiments will be reviewed ranging from low power lasers sources to inertial confinement laser facilities. Subsequently, a status of work will show the impasse in which the laser propulsion community is currently engaged. Revisiting the basic relations leads to new avenues in ablative and direct laser propulsion for ground based and space based applications. Hereby, special attention will be devoted to the impact of emerging ultra-short pulse lasers on the coupling coefficient and specific impulse. In particular, laser sources and laser propulsion techniques will be tested in microgravity environment. A novel approach to debris removal will be discussed with respect to the Satellite Laser Ranging (SRL) facilities. Finally, some non technical issues will be raised aimed at the future prospects of laser propulsion in the international community.

  13. Propulsion Airframe Integration Test Techniques for Hypersonic Airbreathing Configurations at NASA Langley Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Witte, David W.; Huebner, Lawrence D.; Trexler, Carl A.; Cabell, Karen F.; Andrews, Earl H., Jr.

    2003-01-01

    The scope and significance of propulsion airframe integration (PAI) for hypersonic airbreathing vehicles is presented through a discussion of the PAI test techniques utilized at NASA Langley Research Center. Four primary types of PAI model tests utilized at NASA Langley for hypersonic airbreathing vehicles are discussed. The four types of PAI test models examined are the forebody/inlet test model, the partial-width/truncated propulsion flowpath test model, the powered exhaust simulation test model, and the full-length/width propulsion flowpath test model. The test technique for each of these four types of PAI test models is described, and the relevant PAI issues addressed by each test technique are illustrated through the presentation of recent PAI test data.

  14. JANNAF Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee and 35th Combustion Subcommittee Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fry, Ronald S. (Editor); Gannaway, Mary T. (Editor); Rognan, Melanie (Editor)

    1998-01-01

    This document, CPIA Publication 682, Volume 1, is a compilation of 5 unclassified/unlimited technical papers (approved for public release) which were presented at the 1 998 meeting of the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee (APS) and Combustion Subcommittee (CS) held jointly with the Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee (PSHS). The meeting was held on 7-11 December 1998 at Raytheon Systems Company and the Marriott Hotel, Tucson, AZ. Topics covered include HyTech technology development, hydrocarbon fuel development for hypersonic applications, pulse detonation propulsion system development and arc heaters for direct-connect scramjet testing.

  15. Survey of Aerothermodynamics Facilities Useful for the Design of Hypersonic Vehicles Using Air-Breathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, James O.; Deiwert, George S.

    1997-01-01

    This paper surveys the use of aerothermodynamic facilities which have been useful in the study of external flows and propulsion aspects of hypersonic, air-breathing vehicles. While the paper is not a survey of all facilities, it covers the utility of shock tunnels and conventional hypersonic blow-down facilities which have been used for hypersonic air-breather studies. The problems confronting researchers in the field of aerothermodynamics are outlined. Results from the T5 GALCIT tunnel for the shock-on lip problem are outlined. Experiments on combustors and short expansion nozzles using the semi-free jet method have been conducted in large shock tunnels. An example which employed the NASA Ames 16-Inch shock tunnel is outlined, and the philosophy of the test technique is described. Conventional blow-down hypersonic wind tunnels are quite useful in hypersonic air-breathing studies. Results from an expansion ramp experiment, simulating the nozzle on a hypersonic air-breather from the NASA Ames 3.5 Foot Hypersonic wind tunnel are summarized. Similar work on expansion nozzles conducted in the NASA Langley hypersonic wind tunnel complex is cited. Free-jet air-frame propulsion integration and configuration stability experiments conducted at Langley in the hypersonic wind tunnel complex on a small generic model are also summarized.

  16. Calibration of the Langley 8-Foot High Temperature Tunnel for Hypersonic Airbreathing Propulsion Testing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huebner, Lawrence D.; Rock, Kenneth E.; Voland, Randall T.; Wieting, Allan R.

    1996-01-01

    The NASA Langley 8-Foot High Temperature Tunnel has recently been modified to produce a unique testing capability for hypersonic airbreathing propulsion systems. Prior to these modifications, the facility was used primarily for aerothermal loads and structural verification testing at true flight total enthalpy conditions for Mach numbers between 6 and 7. One of the recent modifications was an oxygen replenishment system which allows operating airbreathing propulsion systems to be tested at true flight total enthalpies. Following the modifications to the facility, calibration runs were performed at total enthalpies corresponding to flight Mach numbers of 6.3 and 6.8 to establish the flow characteristics of the facility with its new capabilities. The results of this calibration, as well as modifications to tunnel combustor hardware prior to calibration to improve tunnel flow quality, are described in this paper.

  17. Advances in computational design and analysis of airbreathing propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klineberg, John M.

    1989-01-01

    The development of commercial and military aircraft depends, to a large extent, on engine manufacturers being able to achieve significant increases in propulsion capability through improved component aerodynamics, materials, and structures. The recent history of propulsion has been marked by efforts to develop computational techniques that can speed up the propulsion design process and produce superior designs. The availability of powerful supercomputers, such as the NASA Numerical Aerodynamic Simulator, and the potential for even higher performance offered by parallel computer architectures, have opened the door to the use of multi-dimensional simulations to study complex physical phenomena in propulsion systems that have previously defied analysis or experimental observation. An overview of several NASA Lewis research efforts is provided that are contributing toward the long-range goal of a numerical test-cell for the integrated, multidisciplinary design, analysis, and optimization of propulsion systems. Specific examples in Internal Computational Fluid Mechanics, Computational Structural Mechanics, Computational Materials Science, and High Performance Computing are cited and described in terms of current capabilities, technical challenges, and future research directions.

  18. JANNAF 24th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee and 36th Combustion Subcommittee Joint Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fry, Ronald S. (Editor); Gannaway, Mary T. (Editor)

    1999-01-01

    Volume 1, the first of three volumes is a compilation of 16 unclassified/unlimited-technical papers presented at the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) 24th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee and 36th Combustion Subcommittee held jointly with the 181 Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee. The meeting was held on 18-21 October 1999 at NASA Kennedy Space Center and The DoubleTree Oceanfront Hotel, Cocoa Beach, Florida. Topics covered include overviews of RBCC and PDE hypersonic technology, Hyper-X propulsion ground testing, development of JP-8 for hypersonic vehicle applications, numerical simulation of dual-mode SJ combustion, V&V of M&S computer codes, MHD SJ and Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) launch vehicle concepts, and Pulse Detonation Engine (PDE) propulsion technology development including fundamental investigations, modeling, aerodynamics, operation and performance.

  19. A Review of Laser Ablation Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Phipps, Claude; Bohn, Willy; Lippert, Thomas; Sasoh, Akihiro; Schall, Wolfgang; Sinko, John

    2010-10-08

    Laser Ablation Propulsion is a broad field with a wide range of applications. We review the 30-year history of laser ablation propulsion from the transition from earlier pure photon propulsion concepts of Oberth and Saenger through Kantrowitz's original laser ablation propulsion idea to the development of air-breathing 'Lightcraft' and advanced spacecraft propulsion engines. The polymers POM and GAP have played an important role in experiments and liquid ablation fuels show great promise. Some applications use a laser system which is distant from the propelled object, for example, on another spacecraft, the Earth or a planet. Others use a laser that is part of the spacecraft propulsion system on the spacecraft. Propulsion is produced when an intense laser beam strikes a condensed matter surface and produces a vapor or plasma jet. The advantages of this idea are that exhaust velocity of the propulsion engine covers a broader range than is available from chemistry, that it can be varied to meet the instantaneous demands of the particular mission, and that practical realizations give lower mass and greater simplicity for a payload delivery system. We review the underlying theory, buttressed by extensive experimental data. The primary problem in laser space propulsion theory has been the absence of a way to predict thrust and specific impulse over the transition from the vapor to the plasma regimes. We briefly discuss a method for combining two new vapor regime treatments with plasma regime theory, giving a smooth transition from one regime to the other. We conclude with a section on future directions.

  20. A Review of Laser Ablation Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, Claude; Bohn, Willy; Lippert, Thomas; Sasoh, Akihiro; Schall, Wolfgang; Sinko, John

    2010-10-01

    Laser Ablation Propulsion is a broad field with a wide range of applications. We review the 30-year history of laser ablation propulsion from the transition from earlier pure photon propulsion concepts of Oberth and Sänger through Kantrowitz's original laser ablation propulsion idea to the development of air-breathing "Lightcraft" and advanced spacecraft propulsion engines. The polymers POM and GAP have played an important rôle in experiments and liquid ablation fuels show great promise. Some applications use a laser system which is distant from the propelled object, for example, on another spacecraft, the Earth or a planet. Others use a laser that is part of the spacecraft propulsion system on the spacecraft. Propulsion is produced when an intense laser beam strikes a condensed matter surface and produces a vapor or plasma jet. The advantages of this idea are that exhaust velocity of the propulsion engine covers a broader range than is available from chemistry, that it can be varied to meet the instantaneous demands of the particular mission, and that practical realizations give lower mass and greater simplicity for a payload delivery system. We review the underlying theory, buttressed by extensive experimental data. The primary problem in laser space propulsion theory has been the absence of a way to predict thrust and specific impulse over the transition from the vapor to the plasma regimes. We briefly discuss a method for combining two new vapor regime treatments with plasma regime theory, giving a smooth transition from one regime to the other. We conclude with a section on future directions.

  1. Innovative Airbreathing Propulsion Concepts for Access to Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitlow, Jr., Woodrow; Blech, Richard A.; Blankson, Isaiah M.

    2001-01-01

    This paper will present technologies and concepts for novel aeropropulsion systems. These technologies will enhance the safety of operations, reduce life cycle costs, and contribute to reduced costs of air travel and access to space. One of the goals of the NASA program is to reduce the carbon-dioxide emissions of aircraft engines. Engine concepts that use highly efficient fuel cell/electric drive technologies in hydrogen-fueled engines will be presented in the proposed paper. Carbon-dioxide emissions will be eliminated by replacing hydrocarbon fuel with hydrogen, and reduce NOx emissions through better combustion process control. A revolutionary exoskeletal engine concept, in which the engine drum is rotated, will be shown. This concept has the potential to allow a propulsion system that can be used for subsonic through hypersonic flight. Dual fan concepts that have ultra-high bypass ratios, low noise, and low drag will be presented. Flow-controlled turbofans and control-configured turbofans also will be discussed. To increase efficiency, a system of microengines distributed along lifting surfaces and on the fuselage is being investigated. This concept will be presented in the paper. Small propulsion systems for affordable, safe personal transportation vehicles will be discussed. These low-oil/oilless systems use technologies that enable significant cost and weight reductions. Pulse detonation engine-based hybrid-cycle and combined-cycle propulsion systems for aviation and space access will be presented.

  2. Air-breathing aerospace plane development essential: Hypersonic propulsion flight tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehta, Unmeel B.

    1994-01-01

    Hypersonic air-breathing propulsion utilizing scramjets can fundamentally change transatmospheric accelerators for low earth-to-orbit and return transportation. The value and limitations of ground tests, of flight tests, and of computations are presented, and scramjet development requirements are discussed. It is proposed that near full-scale hypersonic propulsion flight tests are essential for developing a prototype hypersonic propulsion system and for developing computational-design technology so that it can be used for designing this system. In order to determine how these objectives should be achieved, some lessons learned from past programs are presented. A conceptual two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) prototype/experimental aerospace plane is recommended as a means of providing access-to-space and for conducting flight tests. A road map for achieving these objectives is also presented.

  3. Hypersonic propulsion flight tests as essential to air-breathing aerospace plane development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehta, U.

    1995-01-01

    Hypersonic air-breathing propulsion utilizing scramjets can fundamentally change transatmospheric acclerators for transportation from low Earth orbits (LEOs). The value and limitations of ground tests, of flight tests, and of computations are presented, and scramjet development requirements are discussed. Near-full-scale hypersonic propulsion flight tests are essential for developing a prototype hypersonic propulsion system and for developing computation-design technology that can be used in designing that system. In order to determine how these objectives should be achieved, some lessons learned from past programs are presented. A conceptual two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) prototype/experimental aerospace plane is recommended as a means of providing access-to-space and for conducting flight tests. A road map for achieving these objectives is also presented.

  4. Laser Propulsion Standardization Issues

    SciTech Connect

    Scharring, Stefan; Eckel, Hans-Albert; Roeser, Hans-Peter; Sinko, John E.; Sasoh, Akihiro

    2010-10-08

    It is a relevant issue in the research on laser propulsion that experimental results are treated seriously and that meaningful scientific comparison is possible between groups using different equipment and measurement techniques. However, critical aspects of experimental measurements are sparsely addressed in the literature. In addition, few studies so far have the benefit of independent confirmation by other laser propulsion groups. In this paper, we recommend several approaches towards standardization of published laser propulsion experiments. Such standards are particularly important for the measurement of laser ablation pulse energy, laser spot area, imparted impulse or thrust, and mass removal during ablation. Related examples are presented from experiences of an actual scientific cooperation between NU and DLR. On the basis of a given standardization, researchers may better understand and contribute their findings more clearly in the future, and compare those findings confidently with those already published in the laser propulsion literature. Relevant ISO standards are analyzed, and revised formats are recommended for application to laser propulsion studies.

  5. Laser space propulsion overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, Claude; Luke, James; Helgeson, Wesley

    2007-03-01

    In this paper, we review the history of laser space propulsion from its earliest theoretical conceptions to modern practical applicatons. Applications begin with the "Lightcraft" flights of Myrabo and include practical thrusters for satellites now completing development as well as proposals for space debris removal and direct launch of payloads into orbit. We consider laser space propulsion in the most general sense, in which laser radiation is used to propel a vehicle in space. In this sense, the topic includes early proposals for pure photon propulsion, laser ablation propulsion, as well as propulsion using lasers to detonate a gas, expel a liquid, heat and expel a gas, or even to propagate power to a remote conventional electric thruster. We also discuss the most recent advances in LSP. For the first time, it is possible to consider space propulsion engines which exhibit thrust of one to several newtons while simultaneously delivering 3,000 seconds, or greater, specific impulse. No other engine concept can do both in a compact format. These willl use onboard, rather than remote, lasers. We will review the concept of chemically augmented electric propulsion, which can provide overall thrust efficiency greater than unity while maintaining very low mass to power ratio, high mean time to failure and broad operating range. The main advantage of LSP is exhaust velocity which can be instantaneously varied from 2km/s to 30km/s, simply by varying laser pulsewidth and focal spot size on target. The laser element will probably be a diode-pumped, fiber master-oscillator-power-amplifier (MOPA) system. Liquid fuels are necessary for volumetric efficiency and reliable performance at the multi-kW optical power levels required for multi-N thrust.

  6. Air-breathing aerospace plane development essential: Hypersonic propulsion flight tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehta, Unmeel B.

    1995-01-01

    Hypersonic airbreathing propulsion utilizing scramjets can change transatmospheric accelerators for low earth-to-orbit and return transportation. The value and limitation of ground tests, of flight tests, and of computations are presented, and scramjet development requirements are discussed. It is proposed that near full-scale hypersonic propulsion flight tests are essential for developing computational design technology so that it can be used for designing this system. In order to determine how these objectives should be achieved, some lessons learned from past programs are presented. A conceptual two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) prototype/experimental aerospace plane is recommended as a means of providing access-to-space and for conducting flight tests.

  7. Hypersonic Airbreathing Propulsion: An Aerodynamics, Aerothermodynamics, and Acoustics Competency White Paper

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drummond, J. Philip; Cockrell, Charles E., Jr.; Pellett, Gerald L.; Diskin, Glenn S.; Auslender, Aaron H.; Exton, Reginald J.; Guy, R. Wayne; Hoppe, John C.; Puster, Richard L.; Rogers, R. Clayton

    2002-01-01

    This White Paper examines the current state of Hypersonic Airbreathing Propulsion at the NASA Langley Research Center and the factors influencing this area of work and its personnel. Using this knowledge, the paper explores beyond the present day and suggests future directions and strategies for the field. Broad views are first taken regarding potential missions and applications of hypersonic propulsion. Then, candidate propulsion systems that may be applicable to these missions are suggested and discussed. Design tools and experimental techniques for developing these propulsion systems are then described, and approaches for applying them in the design process are considered. In each case, current strategies are reviewed and future approaches that may improve the techniques are considered. Finally, the paper concentrates on the needs to be addressed in each of these areas to take advantage of the opportunities that lay ahead for both the NASA Langley Research Center and the Aerodynamic Aerothermodynamic, and Aeroacoustics Competency. Recommendations are then provided so that the goals set forth in the paper may be achieved.

  8. Propulsion by laser power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schall, Wolfgang O.

    2005-03-01

    Laser power can be transformed into propulsive power to set into motion various kinds of vehicles and other objects on the surface, in the air and in space. The transformation process can occur indirectly, for instance by producing electricity via photovoltaic cells or thermal power. Another possibility is the generation of impulses by the ablation of matter from a solid body, or by the initiation of a high-pressure plasma breakdown wave in a fluid medium. Applications range from driving remotely powered roving vehicles to various kinds of thrusters for space propulsion. The direct thrust of the laser photon flux can be used for the propulsion of laser sailcrafts. Applications in space range from micropropulsion for satellite attitude control in the near-term to futuristic interstellar travel driven by photon propulsion. Other propulsive applications in space concern the change of orbits of objects like man-made orbital debris as well as of large objects (asteroids, comets) for protection of Earth against disastrous impacts.

  9. Spaceliner Class Operability Gains Via Combined Airbreathing/ Rocket Propulsion: Summarizing an Operational Assessment of Highly Reusable Space Transports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nix, Michael B.; Escher, William J. d.

    1999-01-01

    In discussing a new NASA initiative in advanced space transportation systems and technologies, the Director of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Arthur G. Stephenson, noted that, "It would use new propulsion technology, air-breathing engine so you don't have to carry liquid oxygen, at least while your flying through the atmosphere. We are calling it Spaceliner 100 because it would be 100 times cheaper, costing $ 100 dollars a pound to orbit." While airbreathing propulsion is directly named, rocket propulsion is also implied by, "... while you are flying through the atmosphere." In-space final acceleration to orbital speed mandates rocket capabilities. Thus, in this informed view, Spaceliner 100 will be predicated on combined airbreathing/rocket propulsion, the technical subject of this paper. Interestingly, NASA's recently concluded Highly Reusable Space Transportation (HRST) study focused on the same affordability goal as that of the Spaceliner 100 initiative and reflected the decisive contribution of combined propulsion as a way of expanding operability and increasing the design robustness of future space transports, toward "aircraft like" capabilities. The HRST study built on the Access to Space Study and the Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) development activities to identify and characterize space transportation concepts, infrastructure and technologies that have the greatest potential for reducing delivery cost by another order of magnitude, from $1,000 to $100-$200 per pound for 20,000 lb. - 40.000 lb. payloads to low earth orbit (LEO). The HRST study investigated a number of near-term, far-term, and very far-term launch vehicle concepts including all-rocket single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) concepts, two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) concepts, concepts with launch assist, rocket-based combined cycle (RBCC) concepts, advanced expendable vehicles, and more far term ground-based laser powered launchers. The HRST study consisted of preliminary concept studies, assessments

  10. Cascade Optimization Strategy for Aircraft and Air-Breathing Propulsion System Concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patnaik, Surya N.; Lavelle, Thomas M.; Hopkins, Dale A.; Coroneos, Rula M.

    1996-01-01

    Design optimization for subsonic and supersonic aircraft and for air-breathing propulsion engine concepts has been accomplished by soft-coupling the Flight Optimization System (FLOPS) and the NASA Engine Performance Program analyzer (NEPP), to the NASA Lewis multidisciplinary optimization tool COMETBOARDS. Aircraft and engine design problems, with their associated constraints and design variables, were cast as nonlinear optimization problems with aircraft weight and engine thrust as the respective merit functions. Because of the diversity of constraint types and the overall distortion of the design space, the most reliable single optimization algorithm available in COMETBOARDS could not produce a satisfactory feasible optimum solution. Some of COMETBOARDS' unique features, which include a cascade strategy, variable and constraint formulations, and scaling devised especially for difficult multidisciplinary applications, successfully optimized the performance of both aircraft and engines. The cascade method has two principal steps: In the first, the solution initiates from a user-specified design and optimizer, in the second, the optimum design obtained in the first step with some random perturbation is used to begin the next specified optimizer. The second step is repeated for a specified sequence of optimizers or until a successful solution of the problem is achieved. A successful solution should satisfy the specified convergence criteria and have several active constraints but no violated constraints. The cascade strategy available in the combined COMETBOARDS, FLOPS, and NEPP design tool converges to the same global optimum solution even when it starts from different design points. This reliable and robust design tool eliminates manual intervention in the design of aircraft and of air-breathing propulsion engines where it eases the cycle analysis procedures. The combined code is also much easier to use, which is an added benefit. This paper describes COMETBOARDS

  11. Evaluation of an Ejector Ramjet Based Propulsion System for Air-Breathing Hypersonic Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomas, Scott R.; Perkins, H. Douglas; Trefny, Charles J.

    1997-01-01

    A Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) engine system is designed to combine the high thrust to weight ratio of a rocket along with the high specific impulse of a ramjet in a single, integrated propulsion system. This integrated, combined cycle propulsion system is designed to provide higher vehicle performance than that achievable with a separate rocket and ramjet. The RBCC engine system studied in the current program is the Aerojet strutjet engine concept, which is being developed jointly by a government-industry team as part of the Air Force HyTech program pre-PRDA activity. The strutjet is an ejector-ramjet engine in which small rocket chambers are embedded into the trailing edges of the inlet compression struts. The engine operates as an ejector-ramjet from takeoff to slightly above Mach 3. Above Mach 3 the engine operates as a ramjet and transitions to a scramjet at high Mach numbers. For space launch applications the rockets would be re-ignited at a Mach number or altitude beyond which air-breathing propulsion alone becomes impractical. The focus of the present study is to develop and demonstrate a strutjet flowpath using hydrocarbon fuel at up to Mach 7 conditions.

  12. Analysis of Laser-Generated Impulse In An Airbreathing Pulsed Detonation Engine: Part 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richard, Jacques C.; Myrabo, Leik N.

    2005-04-01

    An investigation is performed on an airbreathing laser propulsion (LP) system designed to propel a 1.4 m diameter, 120-kg (dry mass) vehicle called the Lightcraft Technology Demonstrator (LTD) into low Earth orbit, along with its opto-electronics payload. The LTD concept led directly to the model ♯200 lightcraft — recently demonstrated in laboratory and flight experiments at White Sands Missile Range, NM at the High Energy Laser Systems Test Facility (HELSTF), using the 10-kW PLVTS CO2 laser. The pulsed detonation wave engine (PDE) employs repetitively ignited, laser-supported detonation (LSD) waves to develop thrust by expanding high pressure blast waves over an annular, interior shroud surface. Numerical simulation of thruster impulse is accomplished with a 1-D cylindrical model of blast waves propagating radially outward from a laser-generated `line-source' of high temperature, high pressure air. External airflow over the LTD structure is also analyzed to predict basic engine/vehicle drag characteristics, including inlet total pressure recovery, and captured air mass flow rate — all projected vs. flight Mach number and altitude.

  13. Propulsion integration of hypersonic air-breathing vehicles utilizing a top-down design methodology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirkpatrick, Brad Kenneth

    In recent years, a focus of aerospace engineering design has been the development of advanced design methodologies and frameworks to account for increasingly complex and integrated vehicles. Techniques such as parametric modeling, global vehicle analyses, and interdisciplinary data sharing have been employed in an attempt to improve the design process. The purpose of this study is to introduce a new approach to integrated vehicle design known as the top-down design methodology. In the top-down design methodology, the main idea is to relate design changes on the vehicle system and sub-system level to a set of over-arching performance and customer requirements. Rather than focusing on the performance of an individual system, the system is analyzed in terms of the net effect it has on the overall vehicle and other vehicle systems. This detailed level of analysis can only be accomplished through the use of high fidelity computational tools such as Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) or Finite Element Analysis (FEA). The utility of the top-down design methodology is investigated through its application to the conceptual and preliminary design of a long-range hypersonic air-breathing vehicle for a hypothetical next generation hypersonic vehicle (NHRV) program. System-level design is demonstrated through the development of the nozzle section of the propulsion system. From this demonstration of the methodology, conclusions are made about the benefits, drawbacks, and cost of using the methodology.

  14. Evaluation of an Ejector Ramjet Based Propulsion System for Air-Breathing Hypersonic Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomas, Scott R.; Perkins, H. Douglas; Trefny, Charles J.

    1997-01-01

    A Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) engine system is designed to combine the high thrust to weight ratio of a rocket along with the high specific impulse of a ramjet in a single, integrated propulsion system. This integrated, combined cycle propulsion system is designed to provide higher vehicle performance than that achievable with a separate rocket and ramjet. The RBCC engine system studied in the current program is the Aerojet strutjet engine concept, which is being developed jointly by a government-industry team as part of the Air Force HyTech program pre-PRDA activity. The strutjet is an ejector-ramjet engine in which small rocket chambers are embedded into the trailing edges of the inlet compression struts. The engine operates as an ejector-ramjet from take-off to slightly above Mach 3. Above Mach 3 the engine operates as a ramjet and transitions to a scramjet at high Mach numbers. For space launch applications the rockets would be re-ignited at a Mach number or altitude beyond which air-breathing propulsion alone becomes impractical. The focus of the present study is to develop and demonstrate a strutjet flowpath using hydrocarbon fuel at up to Mach 7 conditions. Freejet tests of a candidate flowpath for this RBCC engine were conducted at the NASA Lewis Research Center's Hypersonic Tunnel Facility between July and September 1996. This paper describes the engine flowpath and installation, outlines the primary objectives of the program, and describes the overall results of this activity. Through this program 15 full duration tests, including 13 fueled tests were made. The first major achievement was the further demonstration of the HTF capability. The facility operated at conditions up to 1950 K and 7.34 MPa, simulating approximately Mach 6.6 flight. The initial tests were unfueled and focused on verifying both facility and engine starting. During these runs additional aerodynamic appliances were incorporated onto the facility diffuser to enhance starting

  15. An Airbreathing Launch Vehicle Design with Turbine-Based Low-Speed Propulsion and Dual Mode Scramjet High-Speed Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moses, P. L.; Bouchard, K. A.; Vause, R. F.; Pinckney, S. Z.; Ferlemann, S. M.; Leonard, C. P.; Taylor, L. W., III; Robinson, J. S.; Martin, J. G.; Petley, D. H.

    1999-01-01

    Airbreathing launch vehicles continue to be a subject of great interest in the space access community. In particular, horizontal takeoff and horizontal landing vehicles are attractive with their airplane-like benefits and flexibility for future space launch requirements. The most promising of these concepts involve airframe integrated propulsion systems, in which the external undersurface of the vehicle forms part of the propulsion flowpath. Combining of airframe and engine functions in this manner involves all of the design disciplines interacting at once. Design and optimization of these configurations is a most difficult activity, requiring a multi-discipline process to analytically resolve the numerous interactions among the design variables. This paper describes the design and optimization of one configuration in this vehicle class, a lifting body with turbine-based low-speed propulsion. The integration of propulsion and airframe, both from an aero-propulsive and mechanical perspective are addressed. This paper primarily focuses on the design details of the preferred configuration and the analyses performed to assess its performance. The integration of both low-speed and high-speed propulsion is covered. Structural and mechanical designs are described along with materials and technologies used. Propellant and systems packaging are shown and the mission-sized vehicle weights are disclosed.

  16. CFD Study of Turbo-Ramjet Interactions in Hypersonic Airbreathing Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, Ing; Hunter, Louis G.

    1996-01-01

    Advanced airbreathing propulsion systems used in Mach 4-6 mission scenarios, usually involve turbo-ramjet configurations. As the engines transition from turbojet to ramjet, there is an operational envelope where both engines operate simultaneously. In the first phase of our study, an over/under nozzle configuration was analyzed. The two plumes from the turbojet and ramjet interact at the end of a common 2-D cowl, where they both reach an approximate Mach 3.0 condition and then jointly expand to Mach 3.6 at the common nozzle exit plane. For the problem analyzed, the turbojet engine operates at a higher nozzle pressure ratio than the ramjet, causes the turbojet plume overpowers the ramjet plume, deflecting it approximately 12 degrees downward and in turn the turbojet plume is deflected 6 degrees upward. In the process, shocks were formed at the deflections and a shear layer formed at the confluence of the two jets. This particular case was experimentally tested and the data were used to compare with a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) study using the PARC2D code. The CFD results were in good agreement with both static pressure distributions on the cowl separator and on nozzle walls. The thrust coefficients were also in reasonable agreement. In addition, inviscid relationships were developed around the confluence point, where the two exhaust jets meet, and these results compared favorably with the CFD results. In the second phase of our study, a 3-D CFD solution was generated to compare with the 2-D solution. The major difference between the 2-D and 3-D solutions was the interaction of the shock waves, generated by the plume interactions, on the sidewall. When a shock wave interacts with a sidewall and sidewall boundary layer, it is called a glancing shock sidewall interaction. These interactions entrain boundary layer flow down the shockline into a vortical flow pattern. The 3-D plots show the streamlines being entrained down the shockline. The pressure of the flow

  17. JANNAF 25th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee, 37th Combustion Subcommittee and 1st Modeling and Simulation Subcommittee Joint Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fry, Ronald S.; Becker, Dorothy L.

    2000-01-01

    Volume I, the first of three volumes, is a compilation of 24 unclassified/unlimited-distribution technical papers presented at the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) 25th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee, 37th Combustion Subcommittee and 1st Modeling and Simulation Subcommittee (MSS) meeting held jointly with the 19th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee. The meeting was held 13-17 November 2000 at the Naval Postgraduate School and Hyatt Regency Hotel, Monterey, California. Topics covered include: a Keynote Address on Future Combat Systems, a review of the new JANNAF Modeling and Simulation Subcommittee, and technical papers on Hyper-X propulsion development and verification; GTX airbreathing launch vehicles; Hypersonic technology development, including program overviews, fuels for advanced propulsion, ramjet and scramjet research, hypersonic test medium effects; and RBCC engine design and performance, and PDE and UCAV advanced and combined cycle engine technologies.

  18. Study of Forebody Injection and Mixing with Application to Hypervelocity Airbreathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Axdahl, Erik; Kumar, Ajay; Wilhite, Alan

    2012-01-01

    The use of premixed, shock-induced combustion in the context of a hypervelocity, airbreathing vehicle requires effective injection and mixing of hydrogen fuel and air on the vehicle forebody. Three dimensional computational simulations of fuel injection and mixing from flush-wall and modified ramp and strut injectors are reported in this study. A well-established code, VULCAN, is used to conduct nonreacting, viscous, turbulent simulations on a flat plate at conditions relevant to a Mach 12 flight vehicle forebody. In comparing results of various fuel injection strategies, it is found that strut injection provides the greatest balance of performance between mixing efficiency and stream thrust potential.

  19. An Overview of Air-Breathing Propulsion Efforts for 2015 SBIR Phase I

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nguyen, Hung D.; Steele, Gynelle C.

    2016-01-01

    NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program focuses on technological innovation by investing in development of innovative concepts and technologies to help NASA mission directorates address critical research needs for Agency programs. This report highlights 24 of the innovative SBIR 2015 Phase I projects that emphasize one of NASA Glenn Research Center's six core competencies-Air-Breathing Propulsion. The technologies cover a wide spectrum of applications such as hybrid nanocomposites for efficient aerospace structures; plasma flow control for drag reduction; physics-based aeroanalysis methods for open rotor conceptual designs; vertical lift by series hybrid power; fast pressure-sensitive paint systems for production wind tunnel testing; rugged, compact, and inexpensive airborne fiber sensor interrogators based on monolithic tunable lasers; and high sensitivity semiconductor sensor skins for multi-axis surface pressure characterization. Each featured technology describes an innovation and technical objective and highlights NASA commercial and industrial applications. This report provides an opportunity for NASA engineers, researchers, and program managers to learn how NASA SBIR technologies could help their programs and projects, and lead to collaborations and partnerships between the small SBIR companies and NASA that would benefit both.

  20. Survey of Aerothermodynamics Facilities Useful for the Design of Hypersonic Vehicles Using Air-Breathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, James O.; Deiwert, G. S.

    1997-01-01

    The dream of producing an air-breathing, hydrogen fueled, hypervelocity aircraft has been before the aerospace community for decades. However, such a craft has not yet been realized, even in an experimental form. Despite the simplicity and beauty of the concept, many formidable problems must be overcome to make this dream a reality. This paper summarizes the aero/aerothermodynamic issues that must be addressed to make the dream a reality and discusses how aerothermodynamics facilities and their modem companion, real-gas computational fluid dynamics (CFD), can help solve the problems blocking the way to realizing the dream. The approach of the paper is first to outline the concept of an air-breathing hypersonic vehicle and then discuss the nose-to-tail aerothermodynamics issues and special aerodynamic problems that arise with such a craft. Then the utility of aerothermodynamic facilities and companion CFD analysis is illustrated by reviewing results from recent United States publications wherein these problems have been addressed. Papers selected for the discussion have k e n chosen such that the review will serve to survey important U.S. aero/aerothermodynamic real gas and conventional wind tunnel facilities that are useful in the study of hypersonic, hydrogen propelled hypervelocity vehicles.

  1. Analysis of Laser-Generated Impulse In An Airbreathing Pulsed Detonation Engine: Part 2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richard, Jacques C.; Myrabo, Leik N.

    2005-04-01

    A detailed parametric study of airbreathing engine performance is carried out for the Lightcraft Technology Demonstrator (LTD), a 1.4-m diameter, 120-kg (dry mass) launch vehicle designed to become a microsatellite after reaching orbit. The LTD's pulsed detonation engine employs repetitively ignited, laser-supported detonation waves to develop thrust by expanding high pressure blast waves over an annular, interior shroud surface. This companion paper presents the analytical LTD airbreathing inlet and vehicle aerodynamics models used to predict basic engine performance and vehicle drag characteristics, including inlet total pressure recovery, captured air mass flow rate, ram drag, etc. — all projected vs. flight Mach number and altitude. The results of this parametric study suggest an optimum inlet air gap of 3-cm for the 100-cm diameter centerbody (external compression inlet), and that Mach 5.5 at 30-km is a reasonable choice for transitioning into the rocket mode.

  2. Performance analysis of a turbofan as a part of an airbreathing propulsion system for space shuttles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinebach, D. A.; Kuehl, W.; Gallus, H. E.

    1993-04-01

    This paper presents the results of the design and performance analysis of airbreathing engines for aerospace planes. The analysis is illustrated by introducing an exemplary twin-shaft turbofan engine with post-combustion and bypass-combustion. Some modules of the performance analysis algorithm such as inlet pressure recovery or real gas effects are also presented. The jet engine is designed in view of increasing temperatures at high flight Mach numbers. Hence, the engine design data are dependent on the characteristics of the available materials as well as on the trajectory of the aerospace plane. The results illustrate the strong influence of the real gas effects on the engine thrust particularly in the case of over-stoichiometric combustion of hydrogen. Turbofan engines offer the following advantages in comparison with equivalent turbojet engines: higher thrust performance in supersonic flight range and lower fuel consumption due to operation management of post-combustion and bypass-combustion.

  3. Conceptual study of space plane powered by hypersonic airbreathing propulsion system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maita, Masataka; Ohkami, Yoshiaki; Yamanaka, Tatsuo; Mori, Takashige

    1990-10-01

    The paper describes the investigations of aerospace plane concept, conducted by the National Aerospace Laboratory (NAL) of Japan, with particular attention given to a concept which integrates a scram/liquid air cycle engine (LACE) hypersonic propulsion system fueling with slush hydrogen. The key requirements in achieving the space plane using scram/LACE propulsion system are described along with the mission requirements and the vehicle characteristics. Typical outputs of SSTO analysis are presented.

  4. I(sup STAR), NASA's Next Step in Air-Breathing Propulsion for Space Access

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hutt, John J.; McArthur, Craig; Cook, Stephen (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The United States' National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has established a strategic plan for future activities in space. A primary goal of this plan is to make drastic improvements in the cost and safety of earth to low-earth-orbit transportation. One approach to achieving this goal is through the development of highly reusable, highly reliable space transportation systems analogous to the commercial airline system. In the year 2000, NASA selected the Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) engine as the next logical step towards this goal. NASA will develop a complete flight-weight, pump-fed engine system under the Integrated System Test of an Airbreathing Rocket (I(sup STAR)) Project. The objective of this project is develop a reusable engine capable of self-powering a vehicle through the air-augmented rocket, ramjet and scramjet modes required in all RBCC based operational vehicle concepts. The project is currently approved and funded to develop the engine through ground test demonstration. Plans are in place to proceed with flight demonstration pending funding approval. The project is in formulation phase and the Preliminary Requirements Review has been completed. The engine system and vehicle have been selected at the conceptual level. The I(sup STAR) engine concept is based on an air-breathing flowpath downselected from three configurations evaluated in NASA's Advanced Reusable Technology contract. The selected flowpath features rocket thrust chambers integrated into struts separating modular flowpath ducts, a variable geometry inlet, and a thermally choked throat. The engine will be approximately 220 inches long and 79 inches wide and fueled with a hydrocarbon fuel using liquid oxygen as the primary oxidizer candidate. The primary concept for the pump turbine drive is pressure-fed catalyzed hydrogen peroxide. In order to control costs, the flight demonstration vehicle will be launched from a B-52 aircraft. The vehicle concept is based on the Air

  5. An Overview of the NASA FAP Hypersonics Project Airbreathing Propulsion Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Auslender, A. H.; Suder, Kenneth L.; Thomas, Scott R.

    2009-01-01

    The propulsion research portfolio of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Fundamental Aeronautics Program Hypersonics Project encompasses a significant number of technical tasks that are aligned to achieve mastery and intellectual stewardship of the core competencies in the hypersonic-flight regime. An overall coordinated programmatic and technical effort has been structured to advance the state-of-the-art, via both experimental and analytical efforts. A subset of the entire hypersonics propulsion research portfolio is presented in this overview paper. To this end, two programmatic research disciplines are discussed; namely, (1) the Propulsion Discipline, including three associated research elements: the X-51A partnership, the HIFiRE-2 partnership, and the Durable Combustor Rig, and (2) the Turbine-Based Combine Cycle Discipline, including three associated research elements: the Combined Cycle Engine Large Scale Inlet Mode Transition Experiment, the small-scale Inlet Mode Transition Experiment, and the High-Mach Fan Rig.

  6. Interactions between Flight Dynamics and Propulsion Systems of Air-Breathing Hypersonic Vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalle, Derek J.

    The development and application of a first-principles-derived reduced-order model called MASIV (Michigan/AFRL Scramjet In Vehicle) for an air-breathing hypersonic vehicle is discussed. Several significant and previously unreported aspects of hypersonic flight are investigated. A fortunate coupling between increasing Mach number and decreasing angle of attack is shown to extend the range of operating conditions for a class of supersonic inlets. Detailed maps of isolator unstart and ram-to-scram transition are shown on the flight corridor map for the first time. In scram mode the airflow remains supersonic throughout the engine, while in ram mode there is a region of subsonic flow. Accurately predicting the transition between these two modes requires models for complex shock interactions, finite-rate chemistry, fuel-air mixing, pre-combustion shock trains, and thermal choking, which are incorporated into a unified framework here. Isolator unstart occurs when the pre-combustion shock train is longer than the isolator, which blocks airflow from entering the engine. Finally, cooptimization of the vehicle design and trajectory is discussed. An optimal control technique is introduced that greatly reduces the number of computations required to optimize the simulated trajectory.

  7. Filtered Mass Density Function for Design Simulation of High Speed Airbreathing Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Givi, P.; Madnia, C. K.; Gicquel, L. Y. M.; Sheikhi, M. R. H.; Drozda, T. G.

    2002-01-01

    The objective of this research is to improve and implement the filtered mass density function (FDF) methodology for large eddy simulation (LES) of high speed reacting turbulent flows. NASA is interested in the design of various components involved in air breathing propulsion systems such as the scramjet. There is a demand for development of robust tools that can aid in the design procedure. The physics of high speed reactive flows is rich with many complexities. LES is regarded as one of the most promising means of simulating turbulent reacting flows.

  8. An Overview of 2014 SBIR Phase 1 and Phase 2 Air-Breathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nguyen, Hung D.; Steele, Gynelle C.; Morris, Jessica R.

    2015-01-01

    NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program focuses on technological innovation by investing in development of innovative concepts and technologies to help NASA mission directorates address critical research needs for Agency programs. This report highlights nine of the innovative SBIR 2014 Phase I and Phase II projects that emphasize one of NASA Glenn Research Center's six core competencies-Air-Breathing Propulsion. The technologies cover a wide spectrum of applications such as development of X-ray computed tomography (CT) imaging method for the measurement of complex 3D ice shapes, phased array techniques for low signal-to-noise ratio wind tunnels, compact kinetic mechanisms for petroleum-derived and alternative aviation fuels, and hybrid electric propulsion systems for a multirotor aircraft. Each featured technology describes an innovation, technical objective, and highlights NASA commercial and industrial applications. This report provides as an opportunity for NASA engineers, researchers, and program managers to learn how NASA SBIR technologies could help their programs and projects, and lead to collaborations and partnerships between the small SBIR companies and NASA that would benefit both.

  9. Modification of NASA Langley 8 foot high temperature tunnel to provide a unique national research facility for hypersonic air-breathing propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kelly, H. N.; Wieting, A. R.

    1984-01-01

    A planned modification of the NASA Langley 8-Foot High Temperature Tunnel to make it a unique national research facility for hypersonic air-breathing propulsion systems is described, and some of the ongoing supporting research for that modification is discussed. The modification involves: (1) the addition of an oxygen-enrichment system which will allow the methane-air combustion-heated test stream to simulate air for propulsion testing; and (2) supplemental nozzles to expand the test simulation capability from the current nominal Mach number to 7.0 include Mach numbers 3.0, 4.5, and 5.0. Detailed design of the modifications is currently underway and the modified facility is scheduled to be available for tests of large scale propulsion systems by mid 1988.

  10. A US History of Airbreathing/Rocket Combined-Cycle (RBCC) Propulsion for Powering Future Aerospace Transports, with a Look Ahead to the Year 2020

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Escher, William J. D.

    1999-01-01

    A technohistorical and forward-planning overview of U.S. developments in combined airbreathing/rocket propulsion for advanced aerospace vehicle applications is presented. Such system approaches fall into one of two categories: (1) Combination propulsion systems (separate, non-interacting engines installed), and (2) Combined-Cycle systems. The latter, and main subject, comprises a large family of closely integrated engine types, made up of both airbreathing and rocket derived subsystem hardware. A single vehicle-integrated, multimode engine results, one capable of operating efficiently over a very wide speed and altitude range, atmospherically and in space. While numerous combination propulsion systems have reached operational flight service, combined-cycle propulsion development, initiated ca. 1960, remains at the subscale ground-test engine level of development. However, going beyond combination systems, combined-cycle propulsion potentially offers a compelling set of new and unique capabilities. These capabilities are seen as enabling ones for the evolution of Spaceliner class aerospace transportation systems. The following combined-cycle hypersonic engine developments are reviewed: (1) RENE (rocket engine nozzle ejector), (2) Cryojet and LACE, (3) Ejector Ramjet and its derivatives, (4) the seminal NASA NAS7-377 study, (5) Air Force/Marquardt Hypersonic Ramjet, (6) Air Force/Lockheed-Marquardt Incremental Scramjet flight-test project, (7) NASA/Garrett Hypersonic Research Engine (HRE), (8) National Aero-Space Plane (NASP), (9) all past projects; and such current and planned efforts as (10) the NASA ASTP-ART RBCC project, (11) joint CIAM/NASA DNSCRAM flight test,(12) Hyper-X, (13) Trailblazer,( 14) W-Vehicle and (15) Spaceliner 100. Forward planning programmatic incentives, and the estimated timing for an operational Spaceliner powered by combined-cycle engines are discussed.

  11. Laser Propulsion for LOTV Space Missions

    SciTech Connect

    Rezunkov, Yuri A.

    2004-03-30

    Advanced Space Propulsion-Investigation Committee (ASPIC) of the Japan Society for Aeronautics and Space Sciences (JSASS) selected the Laser Orbital Transfer Vehicle (LOTV) project for development of non-chemical space propulsion systems that have a capability to sustain expanded human space activities in the 21st century. This talk is presenting an analysis of the laser propulsion researches made within the frames of the ISTC Project no. 1801 as applied to the LOTV Project. The study includes the development of techniques for low-thrust maneuvers of the spacecraft to achieve geostationary orbits.

  12. Analysis of the Magneto-Hydrodynamic (MHD) Energy Bypass Engine for High-Speed Air-Breathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Riggins, David W.

    2002-01-01

    The performance of the MHD energy bypass air-breathing engine for high-speed propulsion is analyzed in this investigation. This engine is a specific type of the general class of inverse cycle engines. In this paper, the general relationship between engine performance (specific impulse and specific thrust) and the overall total pressure ratio through an engine (from inlet plane to exit plane) is first developed and illustrated. Engines with large total pressure decreases, regardless of cause or source, are seen to have exponentially decreasing performance. The ideal inverse cycle engine (of which the MHD engine is a sub-set) is then demonstrated to have a significant total pressure decrease across the engine; this total pressure decrease is cycle-driven, degrades rapidly with energy bypass ratio, and is independent of any irreversibility. The ideal MHD engine (inverse cycle engine with no irreversibility other than that inherent in the MHD work interaction processes) is next examined and is seen to have an additional large total pressure decrease due to MHD-generated irreversibility in the decelerator and the accelerator. This irreversibility mainly occurs in the deceleration process. Both inherent total pressure losses (inverse cycle and MHD irreversibility) result in a significant narrowing of the performance capability of the MHD bypass engine. The fundamental characteristics of MHD flow acceleration and flow deceleration from the standpoint of irreversibility and second-law constraints are next examined in order to clarify issues regarding flow losses and parameter selection in the MM modules. Severe constraints are seen to exist in the decelerator in terms of allowable deceleration Mach numbers and volumetric (length) required for meaningful energy bypass (work interaction). Considerable difficulties are also encountered and discussed due to thermal/work choking phenomena associated with the deceleration process. Lastly, full engine simulations utilizing inlet

  13. Laser Propulsion and the Constant Momentum Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larson, C. William; Mead, Franklin B.; Knecht, Sean D.

    2004-03-01

    We show that perfect propulsion requires a constant momentum mission, as a consequence of Newton's second law. Perfect propulsion occurs when the velocity of the propelled mass in the inertial frame of reference matches the velocity of the propellant jet in the rocket frame of reference. We compare constant momentum to constant specific impulse propulsion, which, for a given specification of the mission delta V, has an optimum specific impulse that maximizes the propelled mass per unit jet kinetic energy investment. We also describe findings of more than 50 % efficiency for conversion of laser energy into jet kinetic energy by ablation of solids.

  14. Laser Propulsion and the Constant Momentum Mission

    SciTech Connect

    Larson, C. William; Mead, Franklin B. Jr.; Knecht, Sean D.

    2004-03-30

    We show that perfect propulsion requires a constant momentum mission, as a consequence of Newton's second law. Perfect propulsion occurs when the velocity of the propelled mass in the inertial frame of reference matches the velocity of the propellant jet in the rocket frame of reference. We compare constant momentum to constant specific impulse propulsion, which, for a given specification of the mission delta V, has an optimum specific impulse that maximizes the propelled mass per unit jet kinetic energy investment. We also describe findings of more than 50 % efficiency for conversion of laser energy into jet kinetic energy by ablation of solids.

  15. Review Of Laser Lightcraft Propulsion System

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, Eric W.; Mead, Franklin B. Jr

    2008-04-28

    Laser-powered 'Lightcraft' systems that deliver nano-satellites to LEO have been studied for the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). The study was built on the extensive Lightcraft laser propulsion technology already developed by theoretical and experimental work by the AFRL's Propulsion Directorate at Edwards AFB, CA. Here we review the history and engineering-physics of the laser Lightcraft system and its propulsive performance. We will also review the effectiveness and cost of a Lightcraft vehicle powered by a high-energy laser beam. One result of this study is the significant influence of laser wavelength on the power lost during laser beam propagation through Earth's atmosphere and in space. It was discovered that energy and power losses in the laser beam are extremely sensitive to wavelength for Earth-To-Orbit missions, and this significantly affects the amount of mass that can be placed into orbit for a given maximum amount of radiated power from a ground-based laser.

  16. Integrated System Test of an Airbreathing Rocket

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mack, Gregory; Beaudry, Charles; Ketchum, Andrew; McArthur, J. Craig (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation provides information on NASA's attempts to develop an air-breathing propulsion in an effort to make future space transportation safer, more reliable and significantly less expensive than today's missions. Spacecraft powered by air-breathing rocket engines would be completely reusable, able to take off and land at airport runways and ready to fly again within days. A radical new engine project is called the Integrated System Tests of an Air-breathing Rocket, or ISTAR.

  17. Advanced propulsion concepts study: Comparative study of solar electric propulsion and laser electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forward, R. L.

    1975-01-01

    Solar electric propulsion (SEP) and laser electric propulsion (LEP) was compared. The LEP system configuration consists of an 80 kW visible laser source on earth, transmitting via an 8 m diameter adaptively controlled phased array through the atmosphere to a 4 m diameter synchronous relay mirror that tracks the LEP spacecraft. The only significant change in the SEP spacecraft for an LEP mission is the replacement of the two 3.7 m by 33.5 m solar cell arrays with a single 8 m diameter laser photovoltaic array. The solar cell array weight is decreased from 320 kg to 120 kg for an increase in payload of 200 kg and a decrease in specific mass of the power system from 20.5 kg/kW to 7.8 kg/kW.

  18. Laser propulsion experiments in South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michaelis, Max M.; Moorgawa, Ashokabose; Forbes, Andrew; Klopper, Wouter; McKenzie, Edric; Boutchiama, David; Bencherif, Hassan

    2002-09-01

    Two sets of experiments indicate a renewal of interest in South Africa in the topic of laser propulsion. Both sets were conducted under the auspices of the new National Laser Center. In the first set, a 1 kW, CO2 laser (1 kHz, 1 J, 100 ns) was used to propel small (ca 1 gram) targets through a vertical tube-launcher and the momentum-coupling coefficient for a variety of conditions was estimated. The somewhat disappointing results were accounted for in terms of the poor beam quality from a single oscillator and premature break-down of the exhaust vapor in the tube. These experiments were conducted with one module of the now dismantled 'MLIS' uranium isotope separation system. The second set of experiments being conducted in Durban with a small but more energetic 'marking' laser (CO2 20 Hz., 4 J, 100 ns). The chief purpose of this, was to better understand the discrepancies between the recent vertical propulsion experiment at Pelindaba and earlier propulsion attempts with the original MLIS chain. Preliminary pendulum experiments were carried out. Burning targets exhibited enhanced coupling for single pulses.

  19. A Status Report of the X-50LR Program: A Laser Propulsion Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mead, Frank B., Jr.; Larson, C. W.; Kalliomaa, Wayne M.

    2001-10-01

    In 1996, the Air Force Research Lab's Propulsion Division at Edwards AFB initiated a program that had as its main objective to launch a laser-propelled vehicle into a suborbital trajectory within a period of 5 years in order to demonstrate the concept and its attractive features. The concept was to be a nanosatellite in which the laser propulsion engine and satellite hardware were intimately shared. This concept was based upon a 1989 design developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute under a Space Defense Initiative Office laser propulsion program. The forebody aeroshell had been designed to act as an external compression surface (i.e. the airbreathing engine inlet). The afterbody served a dual function as a primary receptive optic (parabolic mirror) for the laser beam and as an external expansion surface (plug nozzle). The primary thrust structure was the centrally located annular shroud. The shroud provided air through inlets and acts as a energy absorption chamber for plasma formation. In the rocket mode, the air inlets were closed, and the afterbody and shroud combined to form the rocket thrust chamber and plug ('aerospike-type') nozzle. The fully-scale vehicle was 1.4 meters in diameter with a dry mass of 120 kg. Fully fueled, this vehicle would have an initial mass of about 240 kg (i.e., a mass fraction of 0.5), and would be launched into orbit with a 100 megawatt-class infrared ground-based laser (GBL). This laser propelled vehicle would be a single-stage-to-orbit (i.e., airbreathing only to M=5 and 30 km; a laser thermal rocket, using liquid propellants, at higher altitudes and in space) using a combined-cycle pulsed detonation engine. Once in space, the Lightcraft was to use its one meter diameter optical system to provide, for example, Earth surveys from low Earth orbit with 8-15 cm resolution in the visible light frequencies. Such a device was simple, reliable, safe, environmentally clean, and could have a very high all azimuth on demand launch rate.

  20. Study of underwater laser propulsion using different target materials.

    PubMed

    Qiang, Hao; Chen, Jun; Han, Bing; Shen, Zhong-Hua; Lu, Jian; Ni, Xiao-Wu

    2014-07-14

    In order to investigate the influence of target materials, including aluminum (Al), titanium (Ti) and copper (Cu), on underwater laser propulsion, the analytical formula of the target momentum IT is deduced from the enhanced coupling theory of laser propulsion in atmosphere with transparent overlay metal target. The high-speed photography method and numerical simulation are employed to verify the IT model. It is shown that the enhanced coupling theory, which was developed originally for laser propulsion in atmosphere, is also applicable to underwater laser propulsion with metal targets.

  1. A Laser Ignition Microthruster for Microspacecraft Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakano, Masakatsu; Koizumi, Hiroyuki; Watanabe, Masashi; Arakawa, Yoshihiro

    A laser ignition microthruster was developed for microspacecraft propulsion. Small solid-propellant pellets were ignited by a diode laser beam to produce a high impulse from a very small power source. Basic experiments showed that the microthruster produced an impulse of 60 mNs, using 60 mg B/KNO3 pellets ignited by a 1 W laser beam. A space-based demonstration of the microthruster system is planned onboard a microspacecraft named KKS-1, which has been chosen by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency as one of the six small satellites to be launched with the Greenhouse Gases Observing SATellite, which is scheduled to be launched on a H2A rocket in early 2009.

  2. Specific Impulse Definition for Ablative Laser Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gregory, Don A.; Herren, Kenneth A.

    2005-04-01

    The term "specific impulse" is so ingrained in the field of rocket propulsion that it is unlikely that any fundamental argument would be taken seriously for its removal. It is not an ideal measure but it does give an indication of the amount of mass flow (mass loss/time), as in fuel rate, required to produce a measured thrust over some time period. This investigation explores the implications of being able to accurately measure the ablation rate and how the language used to describe the specific impulse results may have to change slightly, and recasts the specific impulse as something that is not a time average. It is not currently possible to measure the ablation rate accurately in real time so it is generally just assumed that a constant amount of material will be removed for each laser pulse delivered. The specific impulse dependence on the ablation rate is determined here as a correction to the classical textbook definition.

  3. Specific Impulse Definition for Ablative Laser Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herren, Kenneth A.; Gregory, Don A.

    2004-01-01

    The term "specific impulse" is so ingrained in the field of rocket propulsion that it is unlikely that any fundamental argument would be taken seriously for its removal. It is not an ideal measure but it does give an indication of the amount of mass flow (mass loss/time), as in fuel rate, required to produce a measured thrust over some time period This investigation explores the implications of being able to accurately measure the ablation rate and how the language used to describe the specific impulse results may have to change slightly, and recasts the specific impulse as something that is not a time average. It is not currently possible to measure the ablation rate accurately in real time so it is generally just assumed that a constant amount of material will be removed for each laser pulse delivered The specific impulse dependence on the ablation rate is determined here as a correction to the classical textbook definition.

  4. Laser-supported detonation waves and pulsed laser propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J.T.

    1989-01-01

    A laser thermal rocket uses the energy of a large remote laser, possibly ground-based, to heat an inert propellant and generate thrust. Use of a pulsed laser allows the design of extremely simple thrusters with very high performance compared to chemical rockets. The temperatures, pressures, and fluxes involved in such thrusters (10{sup 4} K, 10{sup 2} atmospheres, 10{sup 7} w/cm{sup 2}) typically result in the creation of laser-supported detonation (LSD) waves. The thrust cycle thus involves a complex set of transient shock phenomena, including laser-surface interactions in the ignition if the LSD wave, laser-plasma interactions in the LSD wave itself, and high-temperature nonequilibrium chemistry behind the LSD wave. The SDIO Laser Propulsion Program is investigating these phenomena as part of an overall effort to develop the technology for a low-cost Earth-to-orbit laser launch system. We will summarize the program's approach to developing a high performance thruster, the double-pulse planar thruster, and present an overview of some results obtained to date, along with a discussion of the many research questions still outstanding in this area. 16 refs., 7 figs.

  5. Laser-supported detonation waves and pulsed laser propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J. )

    1990-07-30

    A laser thermal rocket uses the energy of a large remote laser, possibly ground-based, to heat an inert propellant and generate thrust. Use of a pulsed laser allows the design of extremely simple thrusters with very high performance compared to chemical rockets. The temperatures, pressures, and fluxes involved in such thrusters (10{sup 4} K, 10{sup 2} atmospheres, 10{sup 7} w/cm{sup 2}) typically result in the creation of laser-supported detonation (LSD) waves. The thrust cycle thus involves a complex set of transient shock phenomena, including laser-surface interactions in the ignition of the LSD wave, laser-plasma interactions in the LSD wave itself, and high-temperature nonequilibrium chemistry behind the LSD wave. The SDIO Laser Propulsion Program is investigating these phenomena as part of an overall effort to develop the technology for a low-cost Earth-to-orbit laser launch system. We will summarize the Program's approach to developing a high performance thruster, the double-pulse planar thruster, and present an overview of some results obtained to date, along with a discussion of the many research question still outstanding in this area.

  6. Airbreathing Acceleration Toward Earth Orbit

    SciTech Connect

    Whitehead, J C

    2007-05-09

    As flight speed increases, aerodynamic drag rises more sharply than the availability of atmospheric oxygen. The ratio of oxygen mass flux to dynamic pressure cannot be improved by changing altitude. The maximum possible speed for airbreathing propulsion is limited by the ratio of air capture area to vehicle drag area, approximately Mach 6 at equal areas. Simulation of vehicle acceleration shows that the use of atmospheric oxygen offers a significant potential for minimizing onboard consumables at low speeds. These fundamental calculations indicate that a practical airbreathing launch vehicle would accelerate to near steady-state speed while consuming only onboard fuel, then transition to rocket propulsion. It is suggested that an aircraft carrying a rocket-propelled vehicle to approximately Mach 5 could be a realistic technical goal toward improving access to orbit.

  7. Application of high power lasers to space power and propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nored, D. L.

    1976-01-01

    The transmission of laser power over long distances for applications such as direct conversion to propulsive thrust or electrical power is considered. Factors discussed include: problems inherent in transmitting, propagating, and receiving the laser beam over long ranges; high efficiency, closed-cycle, continuous wave operation; advancement of CO2 laser technology; and compatibility with photovoltaic power conversion devices.

  8. Numerical Investigation of Laser Propulsion for Transport in Water Environment

    SciTech Connect

    Han Bing; Li Beibei; Zhang Hongchao; Chen Jun; Shen Zhonghua; Lu Jian; Ni Xiaowu

    2010-10-08

    Problems that cumber the development of the laser propulsion in atmosphere and vacuum are discussed. Based on the theory of interaction between high-intensity laser and materials, as air and water, it is proved that transport in water environment can be impulsed by laser. The process of laser propulsion in water is investigated theoretically and numerically. It shows that not only the laser induced plasma shock wave, but also the laser induced bubble oscillation shock waves and the pressure induced by the collapsing bubble can be used. Many experimental results show that the theory and the numerical results are valid. The numerical result of the contribution of every propulsion source is given in percentage. And the maximum momentum coupling coefficient Cm is given. Laser propulsion in water environment can be applied in many fields. For example, it can provide highly controllable forces of the order of micro-Newton ({mu}N) in microsystems, such as the MEMS (Micro-electromechanical Systems). It can be used as minimally invasive surgery tools of high temporal and spatial resolution. It can be used as the propulsion source in marine survey and exploitation.

  9. Characteristics of volume expansion of laser plasma for efficient propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uchida, Shigeaki; Hashimoto, Kazuhisa; Fujita, Kazuhisa; Niino, Masayuki; Ashizuka, Takashi; Kawashima, Nobuki

    2002-09-01

    Laser propulsion has many advantages over other conventional methods of producing thrust in space applications. For example, laser energy can be delivered to a remote objects such as space debris which otherwise is impossible to make thrust on its surfaces to remove from the orbits. However, essential advantage of laser propulsion lies in the fact that the characteristics of laser propulsion can be controlled over wide range of parameters by changing laser irradiation conditions. This advantage is based on the capability of controlling specific energy carried by propellant. The specific energy is a key parameter of thrust performance since it determines the propellant temperature or expanding velocity and thus propulsion efficiency. A number of researches so far conducted have treated laser plasma interactions created on solid surfaces with laser parameters such as wavelength, pulse width, intensity, as well as ambient gas pressure. The present study will give a new insight to laser plasma interactions and/or new mechanism of laser thrust generation. Laser energy is deposited inside solid target and, as an initial condition, confined by solid material. Since the confinement time is an order of milli-second, both shock waves and thermal conduction can tale part in the energy transfer process and therefore, give more controllable parameters over the thrust characteristics. In this manner, specific energy carried by target material or propellant can be controlled by changing the depth of energy deposition region. This will give a new dimension of controlling laser plasma characteristics for laser propulsion. In this paper, experimental results and physical insights will be presented as to propelled mass and velocity dependence on laser energy and temporal behavior of impulse generation, as well as enhancement of impact generation over the conventional ablation scheme.

  10. Hypersonic Inlet for a Laser Powered Propulsion System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrland, Alan; Doolan, Con; Wheatley, Vincent; Froning, Dave

    2011-11-01

    Propulsion within the lightcraft concept is produced via laser induced detonation of an incoming hypersonic air stream. This process requires suitable engine configurations that offer good performance over all flight speeds and angles of attack to ensure the required thrust is maintained. Stream traced hypersonic inlets have demonstrated the required performance in conventional hydrocarbon fuelled scramjet engines, and has been applied to the laser powered lightcraft vehicle. This paper will outline the current methodology employed in the inlet design, with a particular focus on the performance of the lightcraft inlet at angles of attack. Fully three-dimensional turbulent computational fluid dynamics simulations have been performed on a variety of inlet configurations. The performance of the lightcraft inlets have been evaluated at differing angles of attack. An idealized laser detonation simulation has also been performed to validate that the lightcraft inlet does not unstart during the laser powered propulsion cycle.

  11. Combined Experimental and Numerical Investigations into Laser Propulsion Engineering Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenoyer, David Adam

    The RPI pulsed Laser Propulsion (LP) research effort focuses on the future application of launching nano- and micro-satellites (1-10 kg payloads) into Low Earth Orbit (LEO), using a remote Ground Based Laser (GBL) power station to supply the required energy for flight. This research program includes both experimental and numerical studies investigating the propulsive performance of several engine geometries (constituting a lightcraft family). Using the Lumonics twin K-922m TEA pulsed laser system, axial and lateral thrust, C m, Isp, and η measurements were made for these engine geometries, examining the effects of several critical factors including: engine orientation (e.g. lateral and angular offset), laser pulse energy, pulse repetition frequency, pulse duration, propellant type, and engine size-scaling effects. Investigation into the origins of lateral "beam riding" forces was of particular interest. Lateral impulse measurements and high speed Schlieren photography were utilized to provide an understanding of laser beam-riding/propulsive physics. The acquired lightcraft database was used to further develop an existing 7-Degree Of Freedom (DOF) flight dynamics model extensively calibrated against 16 actual trajectories of small scale model lightcraft flown at White Sands Missile Range, NM on a 10 kW pulsed CO2 laser called PLVTS. The full system 7-DOF model is comprised of updated individual aerodynamics, engine, laser beam propagation, variable vehicle inertia, reaction controls system, and dynamics models, integrated to represent all major phenomena in a consistent framework. This flight dynamics model and associated 7-DOF code provide a physics-based predictive tool for basic research investigations into laser launched lightcraft for suborbital and orbital missions. Simulations were performed to demonstrate the flight capabilities of each engine geometry using the updated lightcraft propulsion database, the results of which further demonstrate that autonomous

  12. Airbreathing/Rocket Single-Stage-to-Orbit Design Matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, James L.

    1995-01-01

    A definitive design/performance study was performed on a single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) airbreathing propelled orbital vehicle with rocket propulsion augmentation in the Access to Space activities during 1993. A credible reference design was established, but by no means an optimum. The results supported the viability of SSTO airbreathing/rocket vehicles for operational scenarios and indicated compelling reasons to continue to explore the design matrix. This paper will (1) summarize the Access to Space design activity from the SSTO airbreathing/rocket perspective, (2) present an airbreathing/rocket SSTO design matrix established for continued optimization of the design space, and (3) focus on the compelling reasons for airbreathing vehicles in Access to Space scenarios.

  13. Pioneers of laser propulsion: Saenger, Marx, Moeckel, and Kantrowitz

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michaelis, Max M.; Hey, John D.

    2002-09-01

    The strength of empires and civilizations has often depended on novel forms of transportation: the Viking long boat, the Roman road, Iberian galleons, French and British steam ships, Indian trains, the car of the early twentieth century, the plane of the middle and the rocket of late. But Space has now come up against a barrier: the enormous and barely affordable expense of putting things into orbit and the unaffordable energy required to travel to the stars. The recent advent of very energetic lasers may reduce the cost. The pioneering ideas of the mid sixties appear less fanciful. Laser space propulsion is about to become such an important topic that its scientific origin and engineering roots need to be investigated. This is by no means an exhaustive survey. We review here the laser propulsion work of four eminent experts: Eugen Saenger, George Marx, Wolfgang Moeckel and Arthur Kantrowitz.

  14. Tailoring Laser Propulsion for Future Applications in Space

    SciTech Connect

    Eckel, Hans-Albert; Scharring, Stefan

    2010-10-08

    Pulsed laser propulsion may turn out as a low cost alternative for the transportation of small payloads in future. In recent years DLR investigated this technology with the goal of cheaply launching small satellites into low earth orbit (LEO) with payload masses on the order of 5 to 10 kg. Since the required high power pulsed laser sources are yet not at the horizon, DLR focused on new applications based on available laser technology. Space-borne, i.e. in weightlessness, there exist a wide range of missions requiring small thrusters that can be propelled by laser power. This covers space logistic and sample return missions as well as position keeping and attitude control of satellites.First, a report on the proof of concept of a remote controlled laser rocket with a thrust vector steering device integrated in a parabolic nozzle will be given. Second, the road from the previous ground-based flight experiments in earth's gravity using a 100-J class laser to flight experiments with a parabolic thruster in an artificial 2D-zero gravity on an air cushion table employing a 1-J class laser and, with even less energy, new investigations in the field of laser micro propulsion will be reviewed.

  15. Ground-to-orbit laser propulsion: Advanced applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kare, Jordin T.

    1990-01-01

    Laser propulsion uses a large fixed laser to supply energy to heat an inert propellant in a rocket thruster. Such a system has two potential advantages: extreme simplicity of the thruster, and potentially high performance, particularly high exhaust velocity. By taking advantage of the simplicity of the thruster, it should be possible to launch small (10 to 1000 kg) payloads to orbit using roughly 1 MW of average laser power per kg of payload. The incremental cost of such launches would be of an order of $200/kg for the smallest systems, decreasing to essentially the cost of electricity to run the laser (a few times $10/kg) for larger systems. Although the individual payload size would be smaller, a laser launch system would be inherently high-volume, with the capacity to launch tens of thousands of payloads per year. Also, with high exhaust velocity, a laser launch system could launch payloads to high velocities - geosynchronous transfer, Earth escape, or beyond - at a relatively small premium over launches to LEO. The status of pulsed laser propulsion is briefly reviewed including proposals for advanced vehicles. Several applications appropriate to the early part of the next century and perhaps valuable well into the next millennium are discussed qualitatively: space habitat supply, deep space mission supply, nuclear waste disposal, and manned vehicle launching.

  16. Laser propulsion to earth orbit. Has its time come?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kantrowitz, Arthur

    1989-01-01

    Recent developments in high energy lasers, adaptive optics, and atmospheric transmission bring laser propulsion much closer to realization. Proposed here is a reference vehicle for study which consists of payload and solid propellant (e.g. ice). A suitable laser pulse is proposed for using a Laser Supported Detonation wave to produce thrust efficiently. It seems likely that a minimum system (10 Mw CO2 laser and 10 m dia. mirror) could be constructed for about $150 M. This minimum system could launch payloads of about 13 kg to a 400 km orbit every 10 minutes. The annual launch capability would be about 683 tons times the duty factor. Laser propulsion would be an order of magnitude cheaper than chemical rockets if the duty factor was 20 percent (10,000 launches/yr). Launches beyond that would be even cheaper. The chief problem which needs to be addressed before these possibilities could be realized is the design of a propellant to turn laser energy into thrust efficiently and to withstand the launch environment.

  17. Ground-to-orbit laser propulsion: Advanced applications

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J.T.

    1990-01-01

    Laser propulsion uses a large fixed laser to supply energy to heat an inert propellant in a rocket thruster. Such a system has two potential advantages: extreme simplicity of the thruster, and potentially high performance -- particularly high exhaust velocity. By taking advantage of the simplicity of the thruster, it should be possible to launch small (10--1000 kg) payloads to orbit using roughly 1 MW of average laser power per kg of payload. The incremental cost of such launches would be of order $200/kg for the smallest systems, decreasing to essentially the cost of electricity to run the laser (a few times $10/kg) for large systems. Although the individual payload size would be small, a laser launch system would be inherently high-volume, with the capacity to launch tens of thousands of payloads per year. Also, with high exhaust velocity, a laser launch system could launch payloads to high velocities -- geosynchronous transfer, Earth escape, or beyond -- at a relatively small premium over launches to LEO. In this paper, we briefly review the status of pulsed laser propulsion, including proposals for advanced vehicles. We then discuss qualitatively several unique applications appropriate to the early part of the next century, and perhaps valuable well into the next millenium: space habitat supply, deep space mission supply, nuclear waste disposal, and manned vehicle launching.

  18. Laser Propulsion with Liquid Propellants Part II: Thin Films

    SciTech Connect

    Sinko, John E.; Dhote, Nilesh B.; Pakhomov, Andrew V.

    2008-04-28

    Thin films of a liquid propellant have been studied as a potential way to boost thrust for laser propulsion applications. A TEA CO{sub 2} laser with 300 ns pulse width was operated at up to 20 J pulse energy to produce irradiances at the target on the order of 1-1200 MW/cm{sup 2} to ablate various systems of thin films on Delrin registered substrates. In this study, time-resolved force sensors and ICCD imaging techniques were used to determine how an addition of thin liquid films to solid substrates affects propulsive properties such as momentum coupling coefficient, specific impulse, and internal efficiency. Transparent (hexane) and absorbing (ethanol and water) thin films were formed above Delrin registered substrates for the laser system operating at 10.6 {mu}m. Thickness effects on the hexane-Delrin registered system will be examined. An analysis will be made of the possible routes for force generation, and the general properties, benefits, and shortcomings of liquid thin film structures will be summarized with regard to laser propulsion.

  19. Laser Propulsion with Liquid Propellants Part II: Thin Films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinko, John E.; Dhote, Nilesh B.; Pakhomov, Andrew V.

    2008-04-01

    Thin films of a liquid propellant have been studied as a potential way to boost thrust for laser propulsion applications. A TEA CO2 laser with 300 ns pulse width was operated at up to 20 J pulse energy to produce irradiances at the target on the order of 1-1200 MW/cm2 to ablate various systems of thin films on Delrin® substrates. In this study, time-resolved force sensors and ICCD imaging techniques were used to determine how an addition of thin liquid films to solid substrates affects propulsive properties such as momentum coupling coefficient, specific impulse, and internal efficiency. Transparent (hexane) and absorbing (ethanol and water) thin films were formed above Delrin® substrates for the laser system operating at 10.6 μm. Thickness effects on the hexane-Delrin® system will be examined. An analysis will be made of the possible routes for force generation, and the general properties, benefits, and shortcomings of liquid thin film structures will be summarized with regard to laser propulsion.

  20. Ablation of carbon-doped liquid propellant in laser plasma propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Z. Y.; Liang, T.; Zhang, S. Q.; Gao, L.; Gao, H.; Zhang, Z. L.

    2016-04-01

    Carbon-doped liquid glycerol ablated by nanosecond pulse laser is investigated in laser plasma propulsion. It is found that the propulsion is much more correlated with the carbon content. The doped carbon can change the laser intensity and laser focal position so as to reduce the splashing quantity of the glycerol. Less consumption of the liquid volume results in a high specific impulse.

  1. Laser propulsion for space applications: Is it another myth or a real potential?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Joung R.

    2007-05-01

    This paper discusses different principles of inducing propulsive power using lasers and examines the performance limits along with pros and cons with respect to different space propulsion applications: satellite launching, orbital transfer, space debris clearing, satellite propulsion, and space travels. It concludes that a use of electrical propulsion, in conjunction with laser power beaming, is the most feasible application with technological and economic advantages for commercial use within the next decades.

  2. Airbreathing hypersonic vehicle design and analysis methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockwood, Mary Kae; Petley, Dennis H.; Hunt, James L.; Martin, John G.

    1996-01-01

    The design, analysis, and optimization of airbreathing hypersonic vehicles requires analyses involving many highly coupled disciplines at levels of accuracy exceeding those traditionally considered in a conceptual or preliminary-level design. Discipline analysis methods including propulsion, structures, thermal management, geometry, aerodynamics, performance, synthesis, sizing, closure, and cost are discussed. Also, the on-going integration of these methods into a working environment, known as HOLIST, is described.

  3. Propulsion

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Air and Space, 1978

    1978-01-01

    An introductory discussion of aircraft propulsion is included along with diagrams and pictures of piston, turbojet, turboprop, turbofan, and jet engines. Also, a table on chemical propulsion is included. (MDR)

  4. Laser-fusion rocket for interplanetary propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Hyde, R.A.

    1983-09-27

    A rocket powered by fusion microexplosions is well suited for quick interplanetary travel. Fusion pellets are sequentially injected into a magnetic thrust chamber. There, focused energy from a fusion Driver is used to implode and ignite them. Upon exploding, the plasma debris expands into the surrounding magnetic field and is redirected by it, producing thrust. This paper discusses the desired features and operation of the fusion pellet, its Driver, and magnetic thrust chamber. A rocket design is presented which uses slightly tritium-enriched deuterium as the fusion fuel, a high temperature KrF laser as the Driver, and a thrust chamber consisting of a single superconducting current loop protected from the pellet by a radiation shield. This rocket can be operated with a power-to-mass ratio of 110 W gm/sup -1/, which permits missions ranging from occasional 9 day VIP service to Mars, to routine 1 year, 1500 ton, Plutonian cargo runs.

  5. Thrust Measurements in Ballistic Pendulum Ablative Laser Propulsion Experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brazolin, H.; Rodrigues, N. A. S.; Minucci, M. A. S.

    2008-04-01

    This paper describes a setup for thrust measurement in ablative laser propulsion experiments, based on a simple ballistic pendulum associated to an imaging system, which is being assembled at IEAv. A light aluminium pendulum holding samples is placed inside a 100 liters vacuum chamber with two optical windows: the first (in ZnSe) for the laser beam and the second (in fused quartz) for the pendulum visualization. A TEA-CO2 laser beam is focused to the samples providing ablation and transferring linear moment to the pendulum as a whole. A CCD video camera captures the oscillatory movement of the pendulum and the its trajectory is obtained by image processing. By fitting the trajectory of the pendulum to a dumped sinusoidal curve is possible to obtain the amplitude of the movement which is directly related to the momentum transfered to the sample.

  6. Constant-Fluence Area Scaling for Laser Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Sinko, John E.

    2008-04-28

    A series of experiments was conducted on polyoxymethylene (POM, trade name Delrin registered ) propellants in air at atmospheric pressure. A TEA CO{sub 2} laser with maximum output power up to 20 J was used to deliver 300 ns pulses of 10.6 {mu}m radiation to POM targets. Ablation at a constant fluence and a range of spot areas was achieved by varying combinations of the laser energy and spot size. Relevant empirical scaling laws governing laser propulsion parameters such as the momentum coupling coefficient (C{sub m}) and specific impulse (I{sub sp}) for spot areas within a range of about 0.05-0.25 cm{sup 2} are presented. Experimental measurements of imparted impulse, C{sub m}, I{sub sp}, and ablated mass per pulse were made using dynamic piezoelectric force sensors and a scientific balance. Finally, Schlieren ICCD imaging of shock waves and vapor plumes was performed and analyzed.

  7. Thrust Measurements in Ballistic Pendulum Ablative Laser Propulsion Experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Brazolin, H.; Rodrigues, N. A. S.; Minucci, M. A. S.

    2008-04-28

    This paper describes a setup for thrust measurement in ablative laser propulsion experiments, based on a simple ballistic pendulum associated to an imaging system, which is being assembled at IEAv. A light aluminium pendulum holding samples is placed inside a 100 liters vacuum chamber with two optical windows: the first (in ZnSe) for the laser beam and the second (in fused quartz) for the pendulum visualization. A TEA-CO{sub 2} laser beam is focused to the samples providing ablation and transferring linear moment to the pendulum as a whole. A CCD video camera captures the oscillatory movement of the pendulum and the its trajectory is obtained by image processing. By fitting the trajectory of the pendulum to a dumped sinusoidal curve is possible to obtain the amplitude of the movement which is directly related to the momentum transfered to the sample.

  8. Experimental study and numerical simulation of the propulsion of microbeads by femtosecond laser filament

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang Nan; Liu Weiwei; Xu Zhijun; Wang Mingwei; Zhu Xiaonong

    2008-08-01

    The light filament formed by intense femtosecond laser pulses in air can be used to generate the effective impulse to propel a micro glass bead. In this report, through both experimental studies and the corresponding numerical simulations that involve the dynamics of the nonlinear propagation of light and the laser ablation mechanism, we confirm that this propulsion scheme is based on the laser ablation of the target material. The fundamental characteristics of laser propulsion using a single ultrafast laser filament is also revealed.

  9. An advanced optical system for laser ablation propulsion in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergstue, Grant; Fork, Richard; Reardon, Patrick

    2014-03-01

    We propose a novel space-based ablation driven propulsion engine concept utilizing transmitted energy in the form of a series of ultra-short optical pulses. Key differences are generating the pulses at the transmitting spacecraft and the safe delivery of that energy to the receiving spacecraft for propulsion. By expanding the beam diameter during transmission in space, the energy can propagate at relatively low intensity and then be refocused and redistributed to create an array of ablation sites at the receiver. The ablation array strategy allows greater control over flight dynamics and eases thermal management. Research efforts for this transmission and reception of ultra-short optical pulses include: (1) optical system design; (2) electrical system requirements; (3) thermal management; (4) structured energy transmission safety. Research has also been focused on developing an optical switch concept for the multiplexing of the ultra-short pulses. This optical switch strategy implements multiple reflectors polished into a rotating momentum wheel device to combine the pulses from different laser sources. The optical system design must minimize the thermal load on any one optical element. Initial specifications and modeling for the optical system are being produced using geometrical ray-tracing software to give a better understanding of the optical requirements. In regards to safety, we have advanced the retro-reflective beam locking strategy to include look-ahead capabilities for long propagation distances. Additional applications and missions utilizing multiplexed pulse transmission are also presented. Because the research is in early development, it provides an opportunity for new and valuable advances in the area of transmitted energy for propulsion as well as encourages joint international efforts. Researchers from different countries can cooperate in order to find constructive and safe uses of ordered pulse transmission for propulsion in future space

  10. Laser Photonic Propulsion Force for Station-Keeping Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perez, Andres Dono; Yang, Fan Yang; Foster, Cyrus; Faber, Nicolas; Jonsson, Jonas; Stupl, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Small satellites, e.g. cubesats, do not tend to incorporate propulsion subsystems that can compensate for perturbation forces, which causes orbital decay. Cubesats are especially susceptible to the phenomenon of orbital decay, which limits their potential performance, since these effects are more noticeable in Low Earth Orbit (LEO). We postulate that a network of ground-based lasers could extend the operational lifetimes of these satellites by applying a photonic force onto their surfaces. This boosting force would help to counteract the degrading force, which is mainly produced by the drag of the atmosphere. This solution may present an advantage for low cost missions, in that it would enable longer mission durations without the need to incorporate a propulsion system, which comprises a large part of the mass budget and the power constraints of a satellite. This poster presents an analysis of the trade space for both the required network of laser ground stations and the satellite orbits. The analysis is based on simulations of the orbital decay of model satellites.

  11. Laser Ablation of Materials for Propulsion of Spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edwards, David L.; Carruth, Ralph; Campbell, Jonathan; Gray, Perry

    2004-01-01

    A report describes experiments performed as part of a continuing investigation of the feasibility of laser ablation of materials as a means of propulsion for small spacecraft. In each experiment, a specimen of ablative material was mounted on a torsion pendulum and irradiated with a laser pulse having an energy of 5 J. The amplitude of the resulting rotation of the torsion pendulum was taken to be an indication of the momentum transferred from the laser beam. Of the ablative materials tested, aluminum foils yielded the smallest rotation amplitudes of the order of 10 degrees. Black coating materials yielded rotation amplitudes of the order of 90 degrees. Samples of silver coated with a fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) copolymer yielded the largest rotation amplitudes 6 to 8 full revolutions. The report presents a theory involving heating of a confined plasma followed by escape of the plasma to explain the superior momentum transfer performance of the FEP specimens. It briefly discusses some concepts for optimizing designs of spacecraft engines to maximize the thrust obtainable by exploiting the physical mechanisms of the theory. Also discussed is the use of laser-ablation engines with other types of spacecraft engines.

  12. Review of direct-drive laser space propulsion concepts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, Claude

    1998-01-01

    Laser impulse space propulsion (LISP) involves the direct drive of objects which are remote from their energy source, via the thrust produced by laser ablation of the object mass. A repetitively-pulsed laser is favored relative to CW operation because high peak-to-average power ratio allows achievement of the necessary conditions for most efficient thrust production at greater range for each mission, with smaller optics-plus avoidance of certain deleterious nonlinear processes in the atmosphere. We discuss nearterm as well as far-future LISP applications ranging from the clearance of near-Earth, manmade space debris [the ORION concept] to lifting a 10-tonne payload into low-Earth orbit (LEO). The ORION concept employs a 30-kW laser system, optical tracker and telescope with adaptive optics to lock on and ignite a plasma jet on the surface of 1-10-cm space debris objects at range up to 1500 km. The ablation jet slows the object sufficiently (~150 m/s) to produce re-entry and burnup. Direct insertion illustrates the distant future of LISP. A 10-tonne payload is delivered from the launch pad to LEO at a cost of order $100/kg delivered, two orders of magnitude less than current LEO insertion cost. This cost is based on 5 launches per day.

  13. Matter-antimatter gigaelectron volt gamma ray laser rocket propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    2012-12-01

    It is shown that the idea of a photon rocket through the complete annihilation of matter with antimatter, first proposed by Sänger, is not a utopian scheme as it is widely believed. Its feasibility appears to be possible by the radiative collapse of a relativistic high current pinch discharge in a hydrogen-antihydrogen ambiplasma down to a radius determined by Heisenberg's uncertainty principle. Through this collapse to ultrahigh densities the proton-antiproton pairs in the center of the pinch can become the upper gigaelectron volt laser level for the transition into a coherent gamma ray beam by proton-antiproton annihilation, with the magnetic field of the collapsed pinch discharge absorbing the recoil momentum of the beam and transmitting it by the Moessbauer effect to the spacecraft. The gamma ray laser beam is launched as a photon avalanche from one end of the pinch discharge channel. Because of the enormous technical problems to produce and store large amounts of anti-matter, such a propulsion concept may find its first realization in small unmanned space probes to explore nearby solar systems. The laboratory demonstration of a gigaelectron volt gamma ray laser by comparison requiring small amounts of anti-matter may be much closer.

  14. Effect of nozzle geometry on the performance of laser ablative propulsion thruster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Long; Jiao, Long; Tang, Zhiping; Hu, Xiaojun; Peng, Jie

    2016-05-01

    The performance of "ablation mode" laser propulsion thrusters can be improved obviously by nozzle constraint. The nozzle geometry of "ablation mode" laser propulsion thrusters has been studied experimentally with CO2 lasers. Experimental results indicate that the propulsion performance of cylindrical nozzle thrusters is better than expansionary nozzle thrusters at the same lengths. The cylindrical nozzle thrusters were optimized by different laser energies. The results show that two important factors, the length-to-diameter ratio α and the thruster diameter to laser-spot diameter ratio β, affect the propulsion performance of the thruster obviously. The momentum coupling coefficient C m increases with the increase of α, while C m increases at first and then decreases with the increase of β.

  15. Plasma Propulsion of a Metallic Microdroplet and its Deformation upon Laser Impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurilovich, Dmitry; Klein, Alexander L.; Torretti, Francesco; Lassise, Adam; Hoekstra, Ronnie; Ubachs, Wim; Gelderblom, Hanneke; Versolato, Oscar O.

    2016-07-01

    The propulsion of a liquid indium-tin microdroplet by nanosecond-pulse laser impact is experimentally investigated. We capture the physics of the droplet propulsion in a scaling law that accurately describes the plasma-imparted momentum transfer over nearly three decades of pulse energy, enabling the optimization of the laser-droplet coupling. The subsequent deformation of the droplet is described by an analytical model that accounts for the droplet's propulsion velocity and the liquid properties. Comparing our findings to those from vaporization-accelerated millimeter-sized water droplets, we demonstrate that the fluid-dynamic response of laser-impacted droplets is scalable and decoupled from the propulsion mechanism. By contrast, the physics behind the propulsion of liquid-metal droplets differs from that of water. It is studied here in detail and under industrially relevant conditions as found in next-generation nanolithography machines.

  16. Frontiers in propulsion research: Laser, matter-antimatter, excited helium, energy exchange thermonuclear fusion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Papailiou, D. D. (Editor)

    1975-01-01

    Concepts are described that presently appear to have the potential for propulsion applications in the post-1990 era of space technology. The studies are still in progress, and only the current status of investigation is presented. The topics for possible propulsion application are lasers, nuclear fusion, matter-antimatter annihilation, electronically excited helium, energy exchange through the interaction of various fields, laser propagation, and thermonuclear fusion technology.

  17. Flight test of multi-pulses vertical laser propulsion in air breathing mode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wen, Ming; Wu, Jie; Wang, Guangyu

    2013-05-01

    The air breathing vertical laser propulsion experiment refers to that in the air breathing mode the light craft under the irradiation of incident laser of vertical direction will turn pulse laser energy into the vertical propulsion thrust of the light craft and continue along the fixed rail upward propulsion flight. It is an important experiment to test the minimum single pulse energy, the optimization degree of light craft structure, and the characteristics of turning the laser energy into the thrust. The experiment is to be conducted dozens of meters in height away the ground generally. The article gives a detailed explanation of the whole process of the air breathing vertical propulsion test, including vertical propulsion light craft design, the connections design, the connections performance test, the frictional resistance detection and the whole process of movement performance test. A vertical propulsion tower was used to conduct the single pulse experiment and multi-pulse performance was predicted with a multiple-pulse thrust measuring system. The impulse coupling coefficient was estimated from fight height. Finally, through the experiments of air breathing vertical laser propulsion, the relation of the movement time and flight height was obtained. In the curve, the mean acceleration of the light craft can arrive to 6m/s2 in the first 20 pulses and the propulsion height can reach 3.5m in 1.12s. After 0.65s, the acceleration of the light craft decreased significantly. The results of the article lay the good foundation for the laser propulsion launch system verification.

  18. Airbreathing nuclear propulsion: A new look

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rom, F. E.

    1971-01-01

    Nuclear-powered air-cushion vehicles using lightweight aircraft-type nuclear powerplants show promise of carrying transoceanic cargo at cost-per-metric-ton-kilometer (cost-per-ton-n mi) rates comparable to railroad rates. These rates are independent of the distance traveled. Cargo rates for nonstop distances of 4000 n mi are expected to be less than one-half those for similar fossil-fueled air-cushion vehicles. For 6000-n mi nonstop distances, the rates are expected to be less than one-sixth as much. There are no fundamental technical reasons why subsonic nuclear aircraft cannot be made to fly successfully if the gross weight is over 1 million lb. Public safety of airborne nuclear powerplants is receiving the greatest attention in low-level experimental and analytical investigations. Idealized model containment vessels which have been impacted on reinforced concrete showed no leaks after impact at velocities to 400 mph. The experiments indicate feasibility of impacting at speeds over 600 mph with no leaks.

  19. Pulsed Laser Propulsion Performance of 11-cm Parabolic `Bell' Engines: CO2 TEA vs. EDL

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mori, Koichi; Sasoh, Akihiro; Myrabo, Leik N.

    2006-05-01

    Single pulse laboratory experiments were carried out with a high-power CO2 Transversely-Excited Atmospheric (TEA) laser using three laser pulsejet engines, shaped as parabolic bells, measuring 11-cm in diameter. Assuming the vertex is set at the parabola's focus, the "calibration bell" engines had three different total divergence angles of 60, 87.2, and 120 degrees (i.e., viewing outward towards the 11-cm nozzle exit plane). The objective was to quantify and calibrate the effects of laser pulse duration upon the momentum coupling coefficient (Cm) performance from the two CO2 lasers, using laser pulse energy as the parametric variable. Bell engine performance data from the TEA laser are contrasted with former results from the PLVTS CO2 electron discharge laser (EDL). The single-pulse PLVTS tests were conducted in Sept. 2000 and Sept. 2001, revealing that the impulse and Cm performance of the 60° bell generally exceeded the 87.2° engine, which in turn outperformed the 120° bell. With PLVTS, the maximum single-pulse Cm varied from 275 to 375 N-sec/MJ. In contrast, the 2 microsecond TEA laser tests generated results that were distinctively different from that of the EDL. Both tests used a standard ballistic pendulum to measure airbreathing engine performance at a pressure of one atmosphere.

  20. Propulsion Utilizing Laser-Driven Ponderomotive Fields for Deep-Space Missions

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, George J.; Gilland, James H.

    2009-03-16

    The generation of large amplitude electric fields in plasmas by high-power lasers has been studied for several years in the context of high-energy particle acceleration. Fields on the order of GeV/m are generated in the plasma wake of the laser by non-linear ponderomotive forces. The laser fields generate longitudinal and translational electron plasma waves with phase velocities close to the speed of light. These fields and velocities offer the potential to revolutionize spacecraft propulsion, leading to extended deep space robotic probes. Based on these initial calculations, plasma acceleration by means of laser-induced ponderomotive forces appears to offer significant potential for spacecraft propulsion. Relatively high-efficiencies appear possible with proper beam conditioning, resulting in an order of magnitude more thrust than alternative concepts for high I{sub SP} (>10{sup 5} s) and elimination of the primary life-limiting erosion phenomena associated with conventional electric propulsion systems. Ponderomotive propulsion readily lends itself to beamed power which might overcome some of the constraints of power-limited propulsion concepts. A preliminary assessment of the impact of these propulsion systems for several promising configurations on mission architectures has been conducted. Emphasizing interstellar and interstellar-precursor applications, performance and technical requirements are identified for a number of missions. The use of in-situ plasma and gas for propellant is evaluated as well.

  1. Propulsion Utilizing Laser-Driven Ponderomotive Fields for Deep-Space Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, George J.; Gilland, James H.

    2009-03-01

    The generation of large amplitude electric fields in plasmas by high-power lasers has been studied for several years in the context of high-energy particle acceleration. Fields on the order of GeV/m are generated in the plasma wake of the laser by non-linear ponderomotive forces. The laser fields generate longitudinal and translational electron plasma waves with phase velocities close to the speed of light. These fields and velocities offer the potential to revolutionize spacecraft propulsion, leading to extended deep space robotic probes. Based on these initial calculations, plasma acceleration by means of laser-induced ponderomotive forces appears to offer significant potential for spacecraft propulsion. Relatively high-efficiencies appear possible with proper beam conditioning, resulting in an order of magnitude more thrust than alternative concepts for high ISP (>105 s) and elimination of the primary life-limiting erosion phenomena associated with conventional electric propulsion systems. Ponderomotive propulsion readily lends itself to beamed power which might overcome some of the constraints of power-limited propulsion concepts. A preliminary assessment of the impact of these propulsion systems for several promising configurations on mission architectures has been conducted. Emphasizing interstellar and interstellar-precursor applications, performance and technical requirements are identified for a number of missions. The use of in-situ plasma and gas for propellant is evaluated as well.

  2. Characteristics of droplets ejected from liquid glycerol doped with carbon in laser ablation propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhi-Yuan, Zheng; Si-Qi, Zhang; Tian, Liang; Lu, Gao; Hua, Gao; Zi-Li, Zhang

    2016-04-01

    The characteristics of droplets ejected from liquid glycerol doped with carbon are investigated in laser ablation propulsion. Results show that carbon content has an effect on both the coupling coefficient and the specific impulse. The doped-carbon moves the laser focal position from the glycerol interior to the surface. This results in a less consumed glycerol and a high specific impulse. An optimal propulsion can be realized by varying carbon content in glycerol. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 10905049) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities, China (Grant Nos. 53200859165 and 2562010050).

  3. Evaluation of some significant issues affecting trajectory and control management for air-breathing hypersonic vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hattis, Philip D.; Malchow, Harvey L.

    1992-12-01

    Horizontal takeoff airbreathing-propulsion launch vehicles require near-optimal guidance and control which takes into account performance sensitivities to atmospheric characteristics while satisfying physically-derived operational constraints. A generic trajectory/control analysis tool that deepens insight into these considerations has been applied to two versions of a winged-cone vehicle model. Information that is critical to the design and trajectory of these vehicles is derived, and several unusual characteristics of the airbreathing propulsion model are shown to have potentially substantial effects on vehicle dynamics.

  4. Evaluation of some significant issues affecting trajectory and control management for air-breathing hypersonic vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hattis, Philip D.; Malchow, Harvey L.

    1992-01-01

    Horizontal takeoff airbreathing-propulsion launch vehicles require near-optimal guidance and control which takes into account performance sensitivities to atmospheric characteristics while satisfying physically-derived operational constraints. A generic trajectory/control analysis tool that deepens insight into these considerations has been applied to two versions of a winged-cone vehicle model. Information that is critical to the design and trajectory of these vehicles is derived, and several unusual characteristics of the airbreathing propulsion model are shown to have potentially substantial effects on vehicle dynamics.

  5. A study of laser ablation propulsion using polyoxymethelyne and a high power diode laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolesar, Michael D.

    With an increased interest by universities, government and commercial groups in using constellations of pico and nano satellites, the need for micro-thrusters to aid in the station-keeping capabilities has become strong. This report examines using polymers and a laser to ablate material as a potential propulsion option for station-keeping. Homopolymer polyoxymethelyne (POM), commonly known as Delrin(TM), was tested as a fuel for a high powered (20 Watt 980 nm) solid state diode laser ablation thruster to be used for station-keeping on pico and nano sized satellites. The experiments required a partial vacuum to reduce the effects of air decomposition and remove water vapor during the ablation event. The vacuum chamber, shadowgraph, and an impulse measurement system were all designed and built around the 20-Watt laser. Three different sample thicknesses were tested (.005", .010", and .020") to determine the behavior of the polymer. The laser was focused onto the POM sample, which was mounted to a load cell and calibrated to measure the impulse of the system imparted by the laser pulse. The calculated thrust values ranged from 600 microN to 1300 microN with a high uncertainty due to the small sample size. The exhaust plume from the ablation event was captured using a shadowgraph. A low velocity was recorded because the chamber was not a complete vacuum, causing the exhaust plume to collide with the air molecules in the test chamber. However the load cell results suggested that 1.30 mN per burst can be produced with an uncertainty of 30%. With the work outlined in this paper, POM shows the promise and challenge of being a good candidate as a fuel material. POM warrants further development and investment as a fuel to be used with a laser ablation micro-thruster.

  6. Enhancement of momentum coupling coefficient by cavity with toroidal bubble for underwater laser propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jun; Li, Bei-Bei; Zhang, Hong-Chao; Qiang, Hao; Shen, Zhong-Hua; Ni, Xiao-Wu

    2013-02-01

    High-speed photography method is employed to study underwater laser propulsion using targets with and without cavity as well as the effect of the cavity depth. The shapes and motions of bubbles generated from the target tail by Nd: YAG laser are recorded by high-speed camera. Then, the influence of different bubble shapes on the laser propulsion is analyzed. Besides, the velocity and momentum coupling coefficient of the targets are investigated. The results show that the bubble is hemispherical in the case of target without cavity, while it is toroidal in the case of target with cavity. Experiments verify that compared with hemispherical bubble, the toroidal bubble is more conducive to laser propulsion in water, which means the target with cavity obtains more momentum than the target without cavity. In addition, the momentum coupling coefficient increases with laser energy first, and then it levels out and decreases a bit for the target with cavity. There is little effect of the cavity depth on propulsion.

  7. Dedicated Laboratory Setup for CO2 TEA Laser Propulsion Experiments at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvador, Israel I.; Kenoyer, David; Myrabo, Leik N.; Notaro, Samuel

    2010-10-01

    Laser propulsion research progress has traditionally been hindered by the scarcity of photon sources with desirable characteristics, as well as integrated specialized flow facilities in a dedicated laboratory environment. For TEA CO2 lasers, the minimal requirements are time-average powers of >100 W), and pulse energies of >10 J pulses with short duration (e.g., 0.1 to 1 μs); furthermore, for the advanced pulsejet engines of interest here, the laser system must simulate pulse repetition frequencies of 1-10 kilohertz or more, at least for two (carefully sequenced) pulses. A well-equipped laser propulsion laboratory should have an arsenal of sensor and diagnostics tools (such as load cells, thrust stands, moment balances, pressure and heat transfer gages), Tesla-level electromagnet and permanent magnets, flow simulation facilities, and high-speed visualization systems, in addition to other related equipment, such as optics and gas supply systems. In this paper we introduce a cutting-edge Laser Propulsion Laboratory created at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, one of the very few in the world to be uniquely set up for beamed energy propulsion (BEP) experiments. The present BEP research program is described, along with the envisioned research strategy that will exploit current and expanded facilities in the near future.

  8. Dedicated Laboratory Setup for CO{sub 2} TEA Laser Propulsion Experiments at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

    SciTech Connect

    Salvador, Israel I.; Kenoyer, David; Myrabo, Leik N.; Notaro, Samuel

    2010-10-08

    Laser propulsion research progress has traditionally been hindered by the scarcity of photon sources with desirable characteristics, as well as integrated specialized flow facilities in a dedicated laboratory environment. For TEA CO{sub 2} lasers, the minimal requirements are time-average powers of >100 W), and pulse energies of >10 J pulses with short duration (e.g., 0.1 to 1 {mu}s); furthermore, for the advanced pulsejet engines of interest here, the laser system must simulate pulse repetition frequencies of 1-10 kilohertz or more, at least for two (carefully sequenced) pulses. A well-equipped laser propulsion laboratory should have an arsenal of sensor and diagnostics tools (such as load cells, thrust stands, moment balances, pressure and heat transfer gages), Tesla-level electromagnet and permanent magnets, flow simulation facilities, and high-speed visualization systems, in addition to other related equipment, such as optics and gas supply systems. In this paper we introduce a cutting-edge Laser Propulsion Laboratory created at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, one of the very few in the world to be uniquely set up for beamed energy propulsion (BEP) experiments. The present BEP research program is described, along with the envisioned research strategy that will exploit current and expanded facilities in the near future.

  9. Efficient space propulsion engines based on laser ablation

    SciTech Connect

    Phipps, C.R.

    1993-08-01

    Recent results have shown laser momentum transfer coefficients C{sub m} as large as 700 dynes/J from visible and near-infrared laser pulses with heterogeneous targets. Using inexpensive target materials, it is now possible to deliver a 1-tonne satellite from LEO to GEO in 21 days using a 10-kW onboard laser ablation engine, or to maintain several 1-tonne GEO satellites on station from Earth indefinitely using a laser with 100-W average power.

  10. Diagnostics and Impulse Performance of Laser-Ablative Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Sasoh, Akihiro; Mori, Koichi; Anju, Kohei; Suzuki, Koji; Shimono, Masaya; Sawada, Keisuke

    2008-04-28

    Pressure time variations and associated flows induced by pulsed laser ablation were experimentally studied using the Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector (VISAR) and framing Schlieren visualization. The combination of either aluminum or polyacetal target and TEA CO{sub 2} laser pulse were examined. The VISAR measurement resolved that the pressure modulated from the laser power variation in the impulse generation processes. Integrated impulse induced by repetative CO{sub 2} laser pulses was measured using a torsion-type impulse balance. The effect of the ambient pressure was significant. The measured impulse characteristics were closely associated with target surface morphology and fluid dynamics.

  11. Airbreathing Hypersonic Vision-Operational-Vehicles Design Matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, James L.; Pegg, Robert J.; Petley, Dennis H.

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents the status of the airbreathing hypersonic airplane and space-access vision-operational-vehicle design matrix, with emphasis on horizontal takeoff and landing systems being, studied at Langley, it reflects the synergies and issues, and indicates the thrust of the effort to resolve the design matrix including Mach 5 to 10 airplanes with global-reach potential, pop-up and dual-role transatmospheric vehicles and airbreathing launch systems. The convergence of several critical systems/technologies across the vehicle matrix is indicated. This is particularly true for the low speed propulsion system for large unassisted horizontal takeoff vehicles which favor turbines and/or perhaps pulse detonation engines that do not require LOX which imposes loading concerns and mission Flexibility restraints.

  12. Airbreathing Hypersonic Vision-Operational-Vehicles Design Matrix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, James L.; Pegg, Robert J.; Petley, Dennis H.

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents the status of the airbreathing hypersonic airplane and space-access vision-operational-vehicle design matrix, with emphasis on horizontal takeoff and landing systems being studied at Langley; it reflects the synergies and issues, and indicates the thrust of the effort to resolve the design matrix including Mach 5 to 10 airplanes with global-reach potential, pop-up and dual-role transatmospheric vehicles and airbreathing launch systems. The convergence of several critical systems/technologies across the vehicle matrix is indicated. This is particularly true for the low speed propulsion system for large unassisted horizontal takeoff vehicles which favor turbines and/or perhaps pulse detonation engines that do not require LOX which imposes loading concerns and mission flexibility restraints.

  13. Laser propulsion of nanobullets by adiabatic compression of surface plasmon polaritons

    PubMed Central

    Folli, Viola; Ruocco, Giancarlo; Conti, Claudio

    2015-01-01

    Laser propulsion and guide of nanosized objects is fundamental for a wide number of applications. These applications are often limited by the fact that the optical forces acting on nanoparticles are almost negligible even in the favorable case of metallic particles and hence large laser powers are needed to accelerate and guide nanosize devices in practical applications. Furthermore, metallic nanoparticles exhibit strong absorption bands and scattering and this makes more difficult controlling nanopropulsion. Thus, finding some mechanism enhancing the optomechanical interaction at the nanoscale controlled by laser is specifically challenging and pivotal. Here, we demonstrate a novel physical effect where the well-known adiabatic localization of the enhanced plasmonic surface field on the apex of metallic nanocones produces a significant optical pressure employable as a propulsive mechanism. The proposed method gives the possibility to develop new photonics devices to accelerate metallic nanobullets over long distances for a variety of applications. PMID:26631719

  14. Space transfer with ground-based laser/electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Stavnes, Mark; Oleson, Steve; Bozek, John

    1993-01-01

    A new method of providing power to space vehicles consists of using ground-based lasers to beam power to photovoltaic receivers in space. This can be used as a power source for electrically propelled orbital transfer vehicles.

  15. CO{sub 2} Laser Ablation Propulsion Area Scaling With Polyoxymethylene Propellant

    SciTech Connect

    Sinko, John E.; Ichihashi, Katsuhiro; Ogita, Naoya; Sakai, Takeharu; Sasoh, Akihiro; Tsukiyama, Yosuke; Umehara, Noritsugu

    2010-05-06

    The topic of area scaling is of great importance in the laser propulsion field, including applications to removal of space debris and to selection of size ranges for laser propulsion craft in air or vacuum conditions. To address this issue experimentally, a CO{sub 2} laser operating at up to 10 J was used to irradiate targets. Experiments were conducted in air and vacuum conditions over a range of areas from about 0.05-5 cm{sup 2} to ablate flat polyoxymethylene targets at several fluences. Theoretical effects affecting area scaling, such as rarefaction waves, thermal diffusion, and diffraction, are discussed in terms of the experimental results. Surface profilometry was used to characterize the ablation samples. A CFD model is used to facilitate analysis, and key results are compared between experimental and model considerations. The dependence of key laser propulsion parameters, including the momentum coupling coefficient and specific impulse, are calculated based on experimental data, and results are compared to existing literature data.

  16. Ablative Laser Propulsion Using Multi-Layered Material Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nehls, Mary; Edwards, David; Gray, Perry; Schneider, T.

    2002-01-01

    Experimental investigations are ongoing to study the force imparted to materials when subjected to laser ablation. When a laser pulse of sufficient energy density impacts a material, a small amount of the material is ablated. A torsion balance is used to measure the momentum produced by the ablation process. The balance consists of a thin metal wire with a rotating pendulum suspended in the middle. The wire is fixed at both ends. Recently, multi-layered material systems were investigated. These multi-layered materials were composed of a transparent front surface and opaque sub surface. The laser pulse penetrates the transparent outer surface with minimum photon loss and vaporizes the underlying opaque layer.

  17. Radiant energy absorption studies for laser propulsion. [gas dynamics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caledonia, G. E.; Wu, P. K. S.; Pirri, A. N.

    1975-01-01

    A study of the energy absorption mechanisms and fluid dynamic considerations for efficient conversion of high power laser radiation into a high velocity flow is presented. The objectives of the study are: (1) to determine the most effective absorption mechanisms for converting laser radiation into translational energy, and (2) to examine the requirements for transfer of the absorbed energy into a steady flow which is stable to disturbances in the absorption zone. A review of inverse Bremsstrahlung, molecular and particulate absorption mechanisms is considered and the steady flow and stability considerations for conversion of the laser power to a high velocity flow in a nozzle configuration is calculated. A quasi-one-dimensional flow through a nozzle was formulated under the assumptions of perfect gas.

  18. NASA Glenn Research Center's Hypersonic Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palac, Donald T.

    1999-01-01

    NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC), as NASA's lead center for aeropropulsion, is responding to the challenge of reducing the cost of space transportation through the integration of air-breathing propulsion into launch vehicles. Air- breathing launch vehicle (ABLV) propulsion requires a marked departure from traditional propulsion applications. and stretches the technology of both rocket and air-breathing propulsion. In addition, the demands of the space launch mission require an unprecedented level of integration of propulsion and vehicle systems. GRC is responding with a program with rocket-based combined cycle (RBCC) propulsion technology as its main focus. RBCC offers the potential for simplicity, robustness, and performance that may enable low-cost single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) transportation. Other technologies, notably turbine-based combined cycle (TBCC) propulsion, offer benefits such as increased robustness and greater mission flexibility, and are being advanced, at a slower pace, as part of GRC's program in hypersonics.

  19. Delrin® for Propulsion with CO2 Laser: Carbon Doping Effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinko, John E.; Pakhomov, Andrew V.; Millen, Stewart; Zhu, Jane; Sinko, Robert J.; Potts, Kenneth

    2008-04-01

    Polyoxymethylene (POM) a.k.a. Delrin has been commonly used for propulsion with carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers as a solid fuel providing excellent combination of coupling coefficient and specific impulse. In this paper the propulsive characteristics of white and black (carbon-doped) Delrin will be examined and compared. A Transverse Electric discharge in gas at Atmospheric pressure (TEA) CO2 laser with 300 ns pulse width was operated at up to 20 J pulse energy to produce irradiances on the order of 1-500 MW/cm2 on Delrin targets. Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, time-resolved force sensors, a ballistic pendulum, and Schlieren imaging techniques were used to determine absorption spectra, coupling coefficient, specific impulse, and internal efficiency of Delrin. An analysis will be made of the possible routes for force generation.

  20. Delrin registered for Propulsion with CO{sub 2} Laser: Carbon Doping Effects

    SciTech Connect

    Sinko, John E.; Pakhomov, Andrew V.; Millen, Stewart; Zhu, Jane; Sinko, Robert J.; Potts, Kenneth

    2008-04-28

    Polyoxymethylene (POM) a.k.a. Delrin has been commonly used for propulsion with carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) lasers as a solid fuel providing excellent combination of coupling coefficient and specific impulse. In this paper the propulsive characteristics of white and black (carbon-doped) Delrin will be examined and compared. A Transverse Electric discharge in gas at Atmospheric pressure (TEA) CO{sub 2} laser with 300 ns pulse width was operated at up to 20 J pulse energy to produce irradiances on the order of 1-500 MW/cm{sup 2} on Delrin targets. Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, time-resolved force sensors, a ballistic pendulum, and Schlieren imaging techniques were used to determine absorption spectra, coupling coefficient, specific impulse, and internal efficiency of Delrin. An analysis will be made of the possible routes for force generation.

  1. An Experimental and Conceptual Investigation of Laser Micro Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Cai Jian; Hu Xiaojun; Tang Zhiping

    2006-05-02

    The laser micro-impulse torsion pendulum has been developed in this lab. A thin glass plate of about 80{mu}m thick is made as the target holder where the propellant film sticks on. Such structure can be used for both the R-mode and the T-mode measurements. The minimal resolution of this apparatus is 3x10-9N.s. A package, which combines a 2W single LD with its lenses, is evaluated by the pendulum under R-mode and T-mode conditions, respectively, in this lab. the momentum coupling coefficient Cm is about 2dyn/W and the specific impulsion Isp is about 170s. A new conceptual fiber-distributed structure of laser micropropulsion system for microsatellites has been proposed and discussed in this article.

  2. Usage Of Polyacetal Powders As Laser Ablation Propulsion Propellants

    SciTech Connect

    Sasoh, Akihiro; Ogita, Naoya; Sinko, John E.

    2010-05-06

    We examined impulse characteristics of polyoxymeythylene (POM) powders under irradiation by a TEA (Transversely-Excited at Atmospheric pressure)CO{sub 2} laser pulse. The impulse performance exhibited large scatter due to splashing particles. When the powder was hydraulically compacted to form a disk, the momentum coupling coefficient became comparable with that for bulk material, but the mass consumption was increased by several times.

  3. Near-Term Application of Water-Powered Laser-Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Baasandash, Choijil; Yabe, Takashi; Oku, Takehiro; Ohkubo, Tomomasa; Yamaguchi, Masashi; Ohzono, Hirokazu; Taniguchi, Kazumoto; Miyazaki, Sho; Akoh, Ryosuke; Ogata, Yoichi; Fushinobu, Kazuyoshi

    2004-03-30

    We found that water overlay on a metal layer is more effective than solid overlay. By using this target we demonstrated the successful flight of paper-airplane of 5 cm-size over a distance of 1-2m. In this paper, repetitive water supply system and levitation system are proposed for practical application, and examined by experiments. We succeeded in driving an object continuously using repetitive water supply and air slider. We also succeeded in driving 300g object by 0.5J laser using these equipments. In this paper, we try to find out a new possibility of water-powered laser propulsion.

  4. Near-Term Application of Water-Powered Laser-Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baasandash, Choijil; Yabe, Takashi; Oku, Takehiro; Ohkubo, Tomomasa; Yamaguchi, Masashi; Ohzono, Hirokazu; Taniguchi, Kazumoto; Miyazaki, Sho; Akoh, Ryosuke; Ogata, Yoichi; Fushinobu, Kazuyoshi

    2004-03-01

    We found that water overlay on a metal layer is more effective than solid overlay. By using this target we demonstrated the successful flight of paper-airplane of 5 cm-size over a distance of 1-2m. In this paper, repetitive water supply system and levitation system are proposed for practical application, and examined by experiments. We succeeded in driving an object continuously using repetitive water supply and air slider. We also succeeded in driving 300g object by 0.5J laser using these equipments. In this paper, we try to find out a new possibility of water-powered laser propulsion.

  5. Effects of Two-Pulse Sequencing on Characteristics of Elementary Propellants for Ablative Laser Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, M. Shane; Pakhomov, Andrew V.; Herren, Kenneth A.

    2003-01-01

    This work continues on previous investigations of elementary propellants for Ablative Laser Propulsion (ALP). This paper details the experimental methods used for alignment of a non-colinear temporal pulse splitting apparatus. Spatial coincidence of the separate pulses is established, the pulses are delayed, and first data is reported on this pulse spacing effect on time-of-fight (TOF) measurements. This includes ion velocity and number density measurements, and this data is compared to results from a previous work. Also, first data on the experimental determination of the time required for the laser-induced plasma to become purely reflective to incident pulses is presented.

  6. Influence of Surface Radius Curvature on Laser Plasma Propulsion with Ablation Water Propellant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Tian; Zheng, Zhiyuan; Zhang, Siqi; Tang, Weichong; Xiao, Ke; Liang, Wenfei; Gao, Lu; Gao, Hua

    2016-10-01

    The surface shape of liquid water is well controlled during nanosecond pulse laser ablation plasma propulsion. In this study, we measured the effect of the shape on the coupling coefficient and the specific impulse. We found that the coupling coefficient and specific impulse could be optimized by varying the surface convexity. Based on the analysis of the surface radius curvature, we demonstrate that the convex surface changes the laser focal positions to achieve high efficiency. supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 10905049) and Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities of China (Nos. 53200859165, 2562010050)

  7. Three-Dimensional Numerical Analysis for Posture Stability of Laser Propulsion Vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, Masayuki; Ohnishi, Naofumi

    2011-11-01

    We have developed a three-dimensional hydrodynamics code coupling equation of motion of a rigid body for analyzing posture stability of laser propulsion vehicle through numerical simulations of flowfield interacting with unsteady motion of the vehicle. Asymmetric energy distribution is initially added around the focal spot (ring) in order to examine posture stability against an asymmetric blast wave resulting from a laser offset for a lightcraft-type vehicle. The vehicle moves to cancel out the offset from initial offset. However, the Euler angle grows and never returns to zero in a time scale of laser pulse. Also, we found that the vehicle moves to cancel tipping angle when the laser is irradiated to the vehicle with initial tipping angle over the wide angle range, through the vehicle cannot get sufficient restoring force in particular angle, and the tipping angle does not decrease from the initial value for that case.

  8. Study of laser heated propulsion devices. Part 1: Evaluation of laser devices, fuels and energy coupling mechanisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hofer, O. C.

    1982-01-01

    Closed cycle, CW waveform and short wavelength laser devices are desirable characteristics for laser propulsion. The choice of specific wavelengths for hydrogen fuel affects the operational conditions under which a laser supported absorption (LSA) wave is initiated and maintained. The mechanisms of initiating and maintaining LSA waves depend on the wavelength of the laser. Consequently, the shape and size of the hot core plasma is also dependent on wavelength and pressure. Detailed modeling of these mechanisms must be performed before their actual significance can be ascertained. Inverse bremsstrahlung absorption mechanism is the dominant mechanism for coupling energy into the plasma, but other mechanisms which are wavelength dependent can dictate the LSA wave plasma initiation and maintenance conditions. Multiphoton mechanisms become important at visible or shorter wavelengths. These are important mechanisms in creating the initial H2 gas breakdown and supplying the precursor electrons required to sustain the plasma.

  9. Low Power Ground-Based Laser Illumination for Electric Propulsion Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lapointe, Michael R.; Oleson, Steven R.

    1994-01-01

    A preliminary evaluation of low power, ground-based laser powered electric propulsion systems is presented. A review of available and near-term laser, photovoltaic, and adaptive optic systems indicates that approximately 5-kW of ground-based laser power can be delivered at an equivalent one-sun intensity to an orbit of approximately 2000 km. Laser illumination at the proper wavelength can double photovoltaic array conversion efficiencies compared to efficiencies obtained with solar illumination at the same intensity, allowing a reduction in array mass. The reduced array mass allows extra propellant to be carried with no penalty in total spacecraft mass. The extra propellant mass can extend the satellite life in orbit, allowing additional revenue to be generated. A trade study using realistic cost estimates and conservative ground station viewing capability was performed to estimate the number of communication satellites which must be illuminated to make a proliferated system of laser ground stations economically attractive. The required number of satellites is typically below that of proposed communication satellite constellations, indicating that low power ground-based laser beaming may be commercially viable. However, near-term advances in low specific mass solar arrays and high energy density batteries for LEO applications would render the ground-based laser system impracticable.

  10. Pulsed laser propulsion for low cost, high volume launch to orbit

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J.

    1989-06-02

    Pulsed laser propulsion offers the prospect of delivering high thrust at high specific impulse (500-1000 seconds) from a very simple thruster, using the energy of a remote ground-based laser to heat an inert propellant. Current analyses indicate that payloads of approximately 1 kg per megawatt of average laser power can be launched at a rate of one payload every 15 minutes and a marginal cost of $20 to $200 per kg. A 20 MW entry-level launch system could be built using current technology at a cost of $500 million or less; it would be capable of placing 600 tons per year into LEO. The SDIO Laser Propulsion Program has been developing the technology for such a launch system since 1987. The program has conducted theoretical and experimental research on a particular class of laser-driven thruster, the planar double-pulse LSD-wave thruster, which could be used for a near-term launcher. The double-pulse thruster offers several advantages, including extreme simplicity, design flexibility, and the ability to guide a vehicle remotely by precise control of the laser beam. Small-scale experiments have demonstrated the operation of this thruster at a specific impulse of 600 seconds and 10% efficiency; larger experiments now under way are expected to increase this to at least 20% efficiency. Systems-level issues, from guidance and tracking to possible unique applications, have also been considered and will be briefly discussed. There appear to be no fundamental obstacles to creating, in the next five to ten years, a new low-cost ''pipe-line to space.'' 7 refs., 2 figs., 1 tab.

  11. Laser power beaming: an emerging technology for power transmission and propulsion in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, Harold E.

    1997-05-01

    A ground based laser beam transmitted to space can be used as an electric utility for satellites. It can significantly increase the electric power available to operate a satellite or to transport it from low earth orbit (LEO) to mid earth or geosynchronous orbits. The increase in electrical power compared to that obtainable from the sun is as much as 1000% for the same size solar panels. An increase in satellite electric power is needed to meet the increasing demands for power caused by the advent of 'direct to home TV,' for increased telecommunications, or for other demands made by the burgeoning 'space highway.' Monetary savings as compared to putting up multiple satellites in the same 'slot' can be over half a billion dollars. To obtain propulsion, the laser power can be beamed through the atmosphere to an 'orbit transfer vehicle' (OTV) satellite which travels back and forth between LEO and higher earth orbits. The OTV will transport the satellite into orbit as does a rocket but does not require the heavy fuel load needed if rocket propulsion is used. Monetary savings of 300% or more in launch costs are predicted. Key elements in the proposed concept are a 100 to 200 kW free- electron laser operating at 0.84 m in the photographic infrared region of the spectrum and a novel adaptive optic telescope.

  12. Experimental Study of Coupling Coefficients for Propulsion on TEA CO2 Laser

    SciTech Connect

    Tan Rongqing; Lin Jun; Hughes, Jeremy; Pakhomov, Andrew V.

    2004-03-30

    The original purpose of this study was to address a partition of propulsive energy between air and metal, when the breakdown is initiated at the metal surface and/or in adjacent air space. Coupling coefficient as a function of air pressure varied in the range 4 mTorr - 1 atm is presented. The experiments were conducted by focusing output pulses of a TEA CO2 laser system (0.2-{mu}s pulsewidth at 10.6 {mu}m wavelength and {approx} 10.0 J energy) on aluminum targets. Coupling coefficients were derived from the pendulum displacements.

  13. Experimental Investigation of Liquid-propellant Laser Propulsion with a Horizontal Momentum Measuring Lever

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Bin; Li Long; Tang Zhiping; Cai Jian

    2010-05-06

    Thrust performance of Liquid-propellant laser propulsion (LLP) is seriously influenced by factors like laser parameters, choice of propellants and ablation materials. For the purpose of studying these influences, series of impulse measuring experiments for various propellants and ablation materials were conducted. The key device is a Horizontal Momentum Measuring Lever, which covers a C{sub m} measuring range from 10{sup 3} Ns/MJ to about 1.6x10{sup 4} Ns/MJ. A Nd:YAG laser was used as the laser source. From the result, it is found that laser energy density plays an important role on LLP efficiency, higher energy density leads to higher C{sub m} and I{sub sp}. Highest C{sub m} of about 10{sup 4} Ns/MJ with the I{sub sp} of 3.57s was achieved by focusing the laser to the average energy density of 8.83x10{sup 8} W/cm{sup 2}. Besides of that, it is also found that when the energy density is certainly high, C{sub m} of LLP increases stably with the increase of the propellant thickness, which gives a potential way to further improve the thrust performance in LLP.

  14. Electric propulsion, circa 2000

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hudson, W. R.; Finke, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    This paper discusses the future of electric propulsion, circa 2000. Starting with the first generation Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) technology as the first step toward the next century's advanced propulsion systems, the current status and future trends of other systems such as the magnetoplasmadynamic accelerator, the mass driver, the laser propulsion system, and the rail gun are described.

  15. Low level laser intensity improves propulsive appliance effects on condylar cartilage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Figueiredo, Augusto C. R.; dos Santos, Fernanda C. A.; Capeletti, Lucas R.; Galdino, Marcos V. B.; Araújo, Renan V.; Marques, Mara R.

    2012-01-01

    Mandibular propulsive appliance (MPA) stimulates cell proliferation and gene expression on mandible condylar cartilage (Marques et al., 2008). However, its association with low level laser therapy (LLLT) is unknown. This study evaluated the effects of LLLT associated to MPA on mandibular condyle. Twenty Wistar rats were divided into four groups. Group I received any treatment. Group II was bilaterally irradiated on temporomandibular joint with 10 J/cm2 low level laser (780nm, 40mW and 10s) on alternate days. Group III used the propulsive appliance for ten hours daily and Group IV used the appliance daily and was irradiated on alternate days. After 15 days the animals were killed by lethal doses of anesthetics. The condyles were fixed in Methacarn solution and decalcified in 4.13% EDTA solution for 30 days. Seriate saggital 5 μm-thick sections were stained by the hematoxilin-eosin method. Morphological and morphometric analyses were performed to measure the length and the height of the mandibular condyle, the thickness of the condilar cartilage and the bone mass. Results were expressed as mean +/- standard deviation (one-way ANOVA, Tukey's post-test.) The appliance increased all measures compared to the control group, except bone mass. Alone, LLLT had no effects on all measures, however, the association of the appliance with the LLLT increased condylar cartilage and bone mass significantly compared to the others groups. These results suggest that LLLT improves the effects of mandibular propulsive appliance in the condylar cartilage growth and formation of bone mass.

  16. Performance Validation Approach for the GTX Air-Breathing Launch Vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Trefny, Charles J.; Roche, Joseph M.

    2002-01-01

    The primary objective of the GTX effort is to determine whether or not air-breathing propulsion can enable a launch vehicle to achieve orbit in a single stage. Structural weight, vehicle aerodynamics, and propulsion performance must be accurately known over the entire flight trajectory in order to make a credible assessment. Structural, aerodynamic, and propulsion parameters are strongly interdependent, which necessitates a system approach to design, evaluation, and optimization of a single-stage-to-orbit concept. The GTX reference vehicle serves this purpose, by allowing design, development, and validation of components and subsystems in a system context. The reference vehicle configuration (including propulsion) was carefully chosen so as to provide high potential for structural and volumetric efficiency, and to allow the high specific impulse of air-breathing propulsion cycles to be exploited. Minor evolution of the configuration has occurred as analytical and experimental results have become available. With this development process comes increasing validation of the weight and performance levels used in system performance determination. This paper presents an overview of the GTX reference vehicle and the approach to its performance validation. Subscale test rigs and numerical studies used to develop and validate component performance levels and unit structural weights are outlined. The sensitivity of the equivalent, effective specific impulse to key propulsion component efficiencies is presented. The role of flight demonstration in development and validation is discussed.

  17. Influence of oscillating features of a laser-induced bubble on laser propulsion in water environment near different interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, J.; Han, B.; Dou, L.; Pan, Y.-X.; Shen, Z.-H.; Lu, J.; Ni, X.-W.

    2010-12-01

    Laser propulsion in a water environment is influenced by oscillating features of a laser-induced bubble. In our study an optical beam deflection method is used to investigate dynamics of laser-induced semispherical cavitation bubbles near three different interfaces: the rigid boundary (water-solid interface), the free surface (water-air interface) and the liquid-liquid interface (water-soybean oil interface), and in the bulk. The maximum radius of the first bubble oscillation Rmax1 was widened and the collapse time T1 is prolonged in the case of the rigid boundary. Rmax1 is diminished and T1 is shortened in the case of the free surface and the water-oil interface, among which the latter makes Rmax1 even smaller. In order to get the maximum propelling force in different distances near different medium interfaces, different pulse energy of the laser is used. The bubble moves toward the rigid boundary and moves away from the free surface during its oscillations. This will change the application point of the propelling force on the object, and cause a change in the propelling direction of the object.

  18. Affordable Flight Demonstration of the GTX Air-Breathing SSTO Vehicle Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krivanek, Thomas M.; Roche, Joseph M.; Riehl, John P.; Kosareo, Daniel N.

    2002-01-01

    The rocket based combined cycle (RBCC) powered single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) reusable launch vehicle has the potential to significantly reduce the total cost per pound for orbital payload missions. To validate overall system performance, a flight demonstration must be performed. This paper presents an overview of the first phase of a flight demonstration program for the GTX SSTO vehicle concept. Phase 1 will validate the propulsion performance of the vehicle configuration over the supersonic and hypersonic airbreathing portions of the trajectory. The focus and goal of Phase 1 is to demonstrate the integration and performance of the propulsion system flowpath with the vehicle aerodynamics over the air-breathing trajectory. This demonstrator vehicle will have dual mode ramjet/scramjets, which include the inlet, combustor, and nozzle with geometrically scaled aerodynamic surface outer mold lines (OML) defining the forebody, boundary layer diverter, wings, and tail. The primary objective of this study is to demonstrate propulsion system performance and operability including the ram to scram transition, as well as to validate vehicle aerodynamics and propulsion airframe integration. To minimize overall risk and development cost the effort will incorporate proven materials, use existing turbomachinery in the propellant delivery systems, launch from an existing unmanned remote launch facility, and use basic vehicle recovery techniques to minimize control and landing requirements. A second phase would demonstrate propulsion performance across all critical portions of a space launch trajectory (lift off through transition to all-rocket) integrated with flight-like vehicle systems.

  19. Power Reduction of the Air-Breathing Hall-Effect Thruster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Sungrae

    Electric propulsion system is spotlighted as the next generation space propulsion system due to its benefits; one of them is specific impulse. While there are a lot of types in electric propulsion system, Hall-Effect Thruster, one of electric propulsion system, has higher thrust-to-power ratio and requires fewer power supplies for operation in comparison to other electric propulsion systems, which means it is optimal for long space voyage. The usual propellant for Hall-Effect Thruster is Xenon and it is used to be stored in the tank, which may increase the weight of the thruster. Therefore, one theory that uses the ambient air as a propellant has been proposed and it is introduced as Air-Breathing Hall-Effect Thruster. Referring to the analysis on Air-Breathing Hall-Effect Thruster, the goal of this paper is to reduce the power of the thruster so that it can be applied to real mission such as satellite orbit adjustment. To reduce the power of the thruster, two assumptions are considered. First one is changing the altitude for the operation, while another one is assuming the alpha value that is electron density to ambient air density. With assumptions above, the analysis was done and the results are represented. The power could be decreased to 10s˜1000s with the assumptions. However, some parameters that do not satisfy the expectation, which would be the question for future work, and it will be introduced at the end of the thesis.

  20. Rocket-Based Combined-Cycle (RBCC) Propulsion Technology Workshop. Tutorial session

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    The goal of this workshop was to illuminate the nation's space transportation and propulsion engineering community on the potential of hypersonic combined cycle (airbreathing/rocket) propulsion systems for future space transportation applications. Four general topics were examined: (1) selections from the expansive advanced propulsion archival resource; (2) related propulsion systems technical backgrounds; (3) RBCC engine multimode operations related subsystem background; and (4) focused review of propulsion aspects of current related programs.

  1. Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy in a running Hall Effect Thruster for space propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balika, L.; Focsa, C.; Gurlui, S.; Pellerin, S.; Pellerin, N.; Pagnon, D.; Dudeck, M.

    2012-08-01

    Hall Effect Thrusters (HETs) are promising electric propulsion devices for the station-keeping of geostationary satellites and for interplanetary missions. The main limiting factor of the HET lifetime is the erosion of the annular channel ceramic walls. Erosion monitoring has been performed in the laboratory using optical emission spectroscopy (OES) measurements and data treatment based on the coronal model and the actinometric hypothesis. This study uses laser ablation of the ceramic wall in a running HET in order to introduce controlled amounts of sputtered material in the thruster plasma. The transient laser-induced breakdown plasma expands orthogonally in a steady-state plasma jet created by the HET discharge. The proposed spectroscopic method involves species from both plasmas (B, Xe, Xe+). The optical emission signal is correlated to the ablated volume (measured by profilometry) leading to the first direct validation of the actinometric hypothesis in this frame and opening the road for calibration of in-flight erosion monitoring based on the OES method.

  2. Airbreathing combined cycle engine systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rohde, John

    1992-01-01

    The Air Force and NASA share a common interest in developing advanced propulsion systems for commercial and military aerospace vehicles which require efficient acceleration and cruise operation in the Mach 4 to 6 flight regime. The principle engine of interest is the turboramjet; however, other combined cycles such as the turboscramjet, air turborocket, supercharged ejector ramjet, ejector ramjet, and air liquefaction based propulsion are also of interest. Over the past months careful planning and program implementation have resulted in a number of development efforts that will lead to a broad technology base for those combined cycle propulsion systems. Individual development programs are underway in thermal management, controls materials, endothermic hydrocarbon fuels, air intake systems, nozzle exhaust systems, gas turbines and ramjet ramburners.

  3. Beamed energy propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shoji, James M.

    1992-01-01

    Beamed energy concepts offer an alternative for an advanced propulsion system. The use of a remote power source reduces the weight of the propulsion system in flight and this, combined with the high performance, provides significant payload gains. Within the context of this study's baseline scenario, two beamed energy propulsion concepts are potentially attractive: solar thermal propulsion and laser thermal propulsion. The conceived beamed energy propulsion devices generally provide low thrust (tens of pounds to hundreds of pounds); therefore, they are typically suggested for cargo transportation. For the baseline scenario, these propulsion system can provide propulsion between the following nodes: (1) low Earth orbit to geosynchronous Earth orbit; (2) low Earth orbit to low lunar orbit; (3) low lunar orbit to low Mars orbit--only solar thermal; and (4) lunar surface to low lunar orbit--only laser thermal.

  4. Flight testing of airbreathing hypersonic vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hicks, John W.

    1993-01-01

    Using the scramjet engine as the prime example of a hypersonic airbreathing concept, this paper reviews the history of and addresses the need for hypersonic flight tests. It also describes how such tests can contribute to the development of airbreathing technology. Aspects of captive-carry and free-flight concepts are compared. An incremental flight envelope expansion technique for manned flight vehicles is also described. Such critical issues as required instrumentation technology and proper scaling of experimental devices are addressed. Lastly, examples of international flight test approaches, existing programs, or concepts currently under study, development, or both, are given.

  5. JTEC panel report on space and transatmospheric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shelton, Duane

    1990-01-01

    An assessment of Japan's current capabilities in the areas of space and transatmospheric propulsion is presented. The report focuses primarily upon Japan's programs in liquid rocket propulsion and in propulsion for spaceplanes and related transatmospheric areas. It also includes brief reference to Japan's solid rocket programs, as well as to supersonic air-breathing propulsion efforts that are just getting underway. The results are based upon the findings of a panel of U.S. engineers made up of individuals from academia, government, and industry, and are derived from a review of a broad array of the open literature, combined with visits to the primary propulsion laboratories and development agencies in Japan.

  6. Fitting aerodynamics and propulsion into the puzzle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnston, Patrick J.; Whitehead, Allen H., Jr.; Chapman, Gary T.

    1987-01-01

    The development of an airbreathing single-stage-to-orbit vehicle, in particular the problems of aerodynamics and propulsion integration, is examined. The boundary layer transition on constant pressure surfaces at hypersonic velocities, and the effects of noise on the transition are investigated. The importance of viscosity, real-gas effects, and drag at hypersonic speeds is discussed. A propulsion system with sufficient propulsive lift to enhance the performance of the vehicle is being developed. The difficulties of engine-airframe integration are analyzed.

  7. The Design of Future Airbreathing Engine Systems within an Intelligent Synthesis Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Malone, J. B.; Housner, J. M.; Lytle, J. K.

    1999-01-01

    This paper describes a new Initiative proposed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The purpose of this initiative is to develop a future design environment for engineering and science mission synthesis for use by NASA scientists and engineers. This new initiative is called the Intelligent Synthesis Environment (ISE). The paper describes the mission of NASA, future aerospace system characteristics, the current engineering design process, the ISE concept, and concludes with a description of possible ISE applications for the decision of air-breathing propulsion systems.

  8. Field resonance propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holt, A. C.

    1979-01-01

    A propulsion concept was developed based on a proposed resonance between coherent, pulsed electromagnetic wave forms, and gravitational wave forms (or space-time metrics). Using this concept a spacecraft propulsion system potentially capable of galactic and intergalactic travel without prohibitive travel times was designed. The propulsion system utilizes recent research associated with magnetic field line merging, hydromagnetic wave effects, free-electron lasers, laser generation of megagauss fields, and special structural and containment metals. The research required to determine potential, field resonance characteristics and to evaluate various aspects of the spacecraft propulsion design is described.

  9. More air-breathing spaceplane projects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmes, Diane L.

    1989-08-01

    The development and funding of current air-breathing spaceplane projects are discussed. The research considered includes: West Germany's Saenger, the UK's Hotol, the US's NASP, India's hyperplane, and the hypersonic activities of France, Japan, and the USSR. The basic characteristics of a spaceplace are: a reduction in launch costs, reusability, easier ground operations and launch preparation, short turnaround times, horizontal take-off and landing, and reliability and safety. Various types of power-plant concepts for the spaceplane, such as turbojet, ramjet, and scramjet, are described and diagrams are presented. The design of the airframe, aerodynamic heating, payload capacity, and the cost for developing an air-breathing spaceplane are examined. Applications for the spaceplane are proposed.

  10. NASA electric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berkopec, F. D.; Stone, J. R.; Aston, G.

    1985-01-01

    It is pointed out that the requirements for future electric propulsion cover an extremely large range of technical and programmatic characteristics. A NASA program is to provide options for the many potential mission applications, taking into account work on electrostatic, electromagnetic, and electrothermal propulsion systems. The present paper is concerned with developments regarding the three classes of electric propulsion. Studies concerning electrostatic propulsion are concerned with ion propulsion for primary propulsion for planetary and earth-orbit transfer vehicles, stationkeeping for geosynchronous spacecraft, and ion thruster systems. In connection with investigations related to electromagnetic propulsion, attention is given to electromagnetic launchers, the Hall current thruster, and magnetoplasmadynamic thrusters. In a discussion of electrothermal developments, space station resistojets are considered along with high performance resistojets, arcjets, and a laser thruster.

  11. Advanced space propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lapointe, Michael R.

    1993-01-01

    The NASA Lewis Research Center has been actively involved in the evaluation and development of advanced spacecraft propulsion. Recent program elements have included high energy density propellants, electrode less plasma thruster concepts, and low power laser propulsion technology. A robust advanced technology program is necessary to develop new, cost-effective methods of spacecraft propulsion, and to continue to push the boundaries of human knowledge and technology.

  12. Numerical Simulation of Plasma Behavior in a Magnetic Nozzle of a Laser-plasma Driven Nuclear Electric Propulsion System

    SciTech Connect

    Kajimura, Y.; Matsuda, N.; Hayashida, K.; Maeno, A.; Nakashima, H.

    2008-12-31

    Numerical simulations of plasma behavior in a magnetic nozzle of a Laser-Plasma Driven Nuclear Electric Propulsion System are conducted. The propellant is heated and accelerated by the laser and expanded isotropically. The magnetic nozzle is a combination of solenoidal coils and used to collimate and guide the plasma to produce thrust. Simulation calculations by a three-dimensional hybrid code are conducted to examine the plasma behaviors in the nozzle and to estimate the thrust efficiency. We also estimate a fraction ({alpha}) of plasma particles leaking in the forward (spacecraft) direction. By a combination of a few coils, we could decrease {alpha} value without degrading the thrust efficiency. Finally, the shaped propellant is proposed to increase the thrust efficiency.

  13. Thermodynamic Cycle Analysis of Magnetohydrodynamic-Bypass Hypersonic Airbreathing Engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, R. J.; Cole, J. W.; Bityurin, V. A.; Lineberry, J. T.

    2000-01-01

    The prospects for realizing a magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) bypass hypersonic airbreathing engine are examined from the standpoint of fundamental thermodynamic feasibility. The MHD-bypass engine, first proposed as part of the Russian AJAX vehicle concept, is based on the idea of redistributing energy between various stages of the propulsion system flow train. The system uses an MHD generator to extract a portion of the aerodynamic heating energy from the inlet and an MHD accelerator to reintroduce this power as kinetic energy in the exhaust stream. In this way, the combustor entrance Mach number can be limited to a specified value even as the flight Mach number increases. Thus, the fuel and air can be efficiently mixed and burned within a practical combustor length, and the flight Mach number operating envelope can be extended. In this paper, we quantitatively assess the performance potential and scientific feasibility of MHD-bypass engines using a simplified thermodynamic analysis. This cycle analysis, based on a thermally and calorically perfect gas, incorporates a coupled MHD generator-accelerator system and accounts for aerodynamic losses and thermodynamic process efficiencies in the various engin components. It is found that the flight Mach number range can be significantly extended; however, overall performance is hampered by non-isentropic losses in the MHD devices.

  14. Thermodynamic Cycle Analysis of Magnetohydrodynamic-Bypass Airbreathing Hypersonic Engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, Ron J.; Bityurin, Valentine A.; Lineberry, John T.

    1999-01-01

    Established analyses of conventional ramjet/scramjet performance characteristics indicate that a considerable decrease in efficiency can be expected at off-design flight conditions. This can be explained, in large part, by the deterioration of intake mass flow and limited inlet compression at low flight speeds and by the onset of thrust degradation effects associated with increased burner entry temperature at high flight speeds. In combination, these effects tend to impose lower and upper Mach number limits for practical flight. It has been noted, however, that Magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) energy management techniques represent a possible means for extending the flight Mach number envelope of conventional engines. By transferring enthalpy between different stages of the engine cycle, it appears that the onset of thrust degradation may be delayed to higher flight speeds. Obviously, the introduction of additional process inefficiencies is inevitable with this approach, but it is believed that these losses are more than compensated through optimization of the combustion process. The fundamental idea is to use MHD energy conversion processes to extract and bypass a portion of the intake kinetic energy around the burner. We refer to this general class of propulsion system as an MHD-bypass engine. In this paper, we quantitatively assess the performance potential and scientific feasibility of MHD-bypass airbreathing hypersonic engines using ideal gasdynamics and fundamental thermodynamic principles.

  15. Airframe Research and Technology for Hypersonic Airbreathing Vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glass, David E.; Merski, N. Ronald; Glass, Christopher E.

    2002-01-01

    The Hypersonics Investment Area (HIA) within NASA's Advanced Space Transportation Program (ASTP) has the responsibility to develop hypersonic airbreathing vehicles for access to space. The Airframe Research and Technology (AR and T) Project, as one of six projects in the HIA, will push the state-of-the-art in airframe and vehicle systems for low-cost, reliable, and safe space transportation. The individual technologies within the project are focused on advanced, breakthrough technologies in airframe and vehicle systems and cross-cutting activities that are the basis for improvements in these disciplines. Both low and medium technology readiness level (TRL) activities are being pursued. The key technical areas that will be addressed by the project include analysis and design tools, integrated vehicle health management (IVHM), composite (polymer, metal, and ceramic matrix) materials development, thermal/structural wall concepts, thermal protection systems, seals, leading edges, aerothermodynamics, and airframe/propulsion flowpath technology. Each of the technical areas or sub-projects within the Airframe R and T Project is described in this paper.

  16. Ascent performance of an air-breathing horizontal-takeoff launch vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, Richard W.; Shaughnessy, John D.; Cruz, Christopher I.; Naftel, J. C.

    1991-08-01

    Simulations are conducted to investigate a proposed NASA launch vehicle that is fully reusable, takes off horizontally, and uses airbreathing propulsion in a single stage. The propulsion model is based on a cycle analysis method, and the vehicle is assumed to be a rigid structure with distributed fuel, operating under a range of atmospheric conditions. The program to optimize simulated trajectories (POST) is modified to include a predictor-corrector guidance capability and then used to generate the trajectories. Significant errors are encountered during the unpowered coast phase due to uncertainty in the atmospheric density profile. The amount of ascent propellant needed is shown to be directly related to the thrust-vector angle and the location of the center of gravity of the vehicle because of the importance of aim-drag losses to total ideal velocity.

  17. Affordable Flight Demonstration of the GTX Air-Breathing SSTO Vehicle Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krivanek, Thomas M.; Roche, Joseph M.; Riehl, John P.; Kosareo, Daniel N.

    2003-01-01

    The rocket based combined cycle (RBCC) powered single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) reusable launch vehicle has the potential to significantly reduce the total cost per pound for orbital payload missions. To validate overall system performance, a flight demonstration must be performed. This paper presents an overview of the first phase of a flight demonstration program for the GTX SSTO vehicle concept. Phase 1 will validate the propulsion performance of the vehicle configuration over the supersonic and hypersonic air- breathing portions of the trajectory. The focus and goal of Phase 1 is to demonstrate the integration and performance of the propulsion system flowpath with the vehicle aerodynamics over the air-breathing trajectory. This demonstrator vehicle will have dual mode ramjetkcramjets, which include the inlet, combustor, and nozzle with geometrically scaled aerodynamic surface outer mold lines (OML) defining the forebody, boundary layer diverter, wings, and tail. The primary objective of this study is to demon- strate propulsion system performance and operability including the ram to scram transition, as well as to validate vehicle aerodynamics and propulsion airframe integration. To minimize overall risk and develop ment cost the effort will incorporate proven materials, use existing turbomachinery in the propellant delivery systems, launch from an existing unmanned remote launch facility, and use basic vehicle recovery techniques to minimize control and landing requirements. A second phase would demonstrate propulsion performance across all critical portions of a space launch trajectory (lift off through transition to all-rocket) integrated with flight-like vehicle systems.

  18. Numerical Propulsion System Simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naiman, Cynthia

    2006-01-01

    The NASA Glenn Research Center, in partnership with the aerospace industry, other government agencies, and academia, is leading the effort to develop an advanced multidisciplinary analysis environment for aerospace propulsion systems called the Numerical Propulsion System Simulation (NPSS). NPSS is a framework for performing analysis of complex systems. The initial development of NPSS focused on the analysis and design of airbreathing aircraft engines, but the resulting NPSS framework may be applied to any system, for example: aerospace, rockets, hypersonics, power and propulsion, fuel cells, ground based power, and even human system modeling. NPSS provides increased flexibility for the user, which reduces the total development time and cost. It is currently being extended to support the NASA Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate Fundamental Aeronautics Program and the Advanced Virtual Engine Test Cell (AVETeC). NPSS focuses on the integration of multiple disciplines such as aerodynamics, structure, and heat transfer with numerical zooming on component codes. Zooming is the coupling of analyses at various levels of detail. NPSS development includes capabilities to facilitate collaborative engineering. The NPSS will provide improved tools to develop custom components and to use capability for zooming to higher fidelity codes, coupling to multidiscipline codes, transmitting secure data, and distributing simulations across different platforms. These powerful capabilities extend NPSS from a zero-dimensional simulation tool to a multi-fidelity, multidiscipline system-level simulation tool for the full development life cycle.

  19. Space and transatmospheric propulsion technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merkle, Charles; Stangeland, Maynard L.; Brown, James R.; McCarty, John P.; Povinelli, Louis A.; Northam, G. Burton; Zukoski, Edward E.

    1994-03-01

    This report focuses primarily on Japan's programs in liquid rocket propulsion and propulsion for spaceplane and related transatmospheric areas. It refers briefly to Japan's solid rocket programs and to new supersonic air-breathing propulsion efforts. The panel observed that the Japanese had a carefully thought-out plan, a broad-based program, and an ambitious but achievable schedule for propulsion activity. Japan's overall propulsion program is behind that of the United States at the time of this study, but the Japanese are gaining rapidly. The Japanese are at the forefront in such key areas as advanced materials, enjoying a high level of project continuity and funding. Japan's space program has been evolutionary in nature, while the U.S. program has emphasized revolutionary advances. Projects have typically been smaller in Japan than in the United States, focusing on incremental advances in technology, with an excellent record of applying proven technology to new projects. This evolutionary approach, coupled with an ability to take technology off the shelf from other countries, has resulted in relatively low development costs, rapid progress, and enhanced reliability. Clearly Japan is positioned to be a world leader in space and transatmospheric propulsion technology by the year 2000.

  20. Space and transatmospheric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merkle, Charles; Stangeland, Maynard L.; Brown, James R.; Mccarty, John P.; Povinelli, Louis A.; Northam, G. Burton; Zukoski, Edward E.

    1994-01-01

    This report focuses primarily on Japan's programs in liquid rocket propulsion and propulsion for spaceplane and related transatmospheric areas. It refers briefly to Japan's solid rocket programs and to new supersonic air-breathing propulsion efforts. The panel observed that the Japanese had a carefully thought-out plan, a broad-based program, and an ambitious but achievable schedule for propulsion activity. Japan's overall propulsion program is behind that of the United States at the time of this study, but the Japanese are gaining rapidly. The Japanese are at the forefront in such key areas as advanced materials, enjoying a high level of project continuity and funding. Japan's space program has been evolutionary in nature, while the U.S. program has emphasized revolutionary advances. Projects have typically been smaller in Japan than in the United States, focusing on incremental advances in technology, with an excellent record of applying proven technology to new projects. This evolutionary approach, coupled with an ability to take technology off the shelf from other countries, has resulted in relatively low development costs, rapid progress, and enhanced reliability. Clearly Japan is positioned to be a world leader in space and transatmospheric propulsion technology by the year 2000.

  1. Review of laser-solid interaction and its possibilities for space propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harstad, K. G.

    1972-01-01

    Literature on laser-solid interaction is surveyed and the important regimes of this process are delineated. This information is used to discuss the possibility of a laser induced ablation thruster. It is concluded that such a thruster may be feasible if a sufficiently high intensity, high frequency laser beam is available and that further study of interaction is needed.

  2. Hypersonic airbreathing vehicle visions and enhancing technologies

    SciTech Connect

    Hunt, J.L.; Lockwood, M.K.; Petley, D.H.; Pegg, R.J.

    1997-01-01

    This paper addresses the visions for hypersonic airbreathing vehicles and the advanced technologies that forge and enhance the designs. The matrix includes space access vehicles (single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO), two-stage-to-orbit (2STO) and three-stage-to-orbit (3STO)) and endoatmospheric vehicles (airplanes{emdash}missiles are omitted). The characteristics, the performance potential, the technologies and the synergies will be discussed. A common design constraint is that all vehicles (space access and endoatmospheric) have enclosed payload bays. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  3. Experiment of Flow Control Using Laser Energy Deposition Around High Speed Propulsion System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, HyoungJin; Jeung, InSeuck; Lee, SangHun; Kim, Seihwan

    2011-11-01

    An experimental investigation was conducted to examine the effect of a pulsed Nd:YAG laser energy deposition on the shock structures in supersonic/hypersonic flow and quiescent air. The effect of the laser energy and pressure in the blast wave generation were also investigated. As a result, the strength of plasma and blast wave becomes stronger as pressure or laser energy increase. And the breakdown threshold of air by laser energy deposition is 0.015 bar at 508 mJ laser energy, the blast wave threshold generation in air by laser energy deposition is 0.100 bar at same laser energy. As qualitative analysis, schlieren images are also obtained. After the series of experiments, the effect of laser energy deposition (LED) on high speed flow around the shock—shock interaction created by a wedge and blunt body. By LED, the structure of shock—shock interaction was collapsed momentary and the pressure of the stagnation point was fluctuated while interference of wave.

  4. Experimental Investigation of Axial and Beam-Riding Propulsive Physics with TEA CO2 laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenoyer, D. A.; Salvador, I.; Myrabo, L. N.; Notaro, S. N.; Bragulla, P. W.

    2010-10-01

    A twin Lumonics K922M pulsed TEA CO2 laser system (pulse duration of approximately 100 ns FWHM spike, with optional 1 μs tail, depending upon laser gas mix) was employed to experimentally measure both axial thrust and beam-riding behavior of Type ♯200 lightcraft engines, using a ballistic pendulum and Angular Impulse Measurement Device (AIMD, respectively. Beam-riding forces and moments were examined along with engine thrust-vectoring behavior, as a function of: a) laser beam lateral offset from the vehicle axis of symmetry; b) laser pulse energy (˜12 to 40 joules); c) pulse duration (100 ns, and 1 μs); and d) engine size (97.7 mm to 161.2 mm). Maximum lateral momentum coupling coefficients (CM) of 75 N-s/MJ were achieved with the K922M laser whereas previous PLVTS laser (420 J, 18 μs duration) results reached only 15 N-s/MJ—an improvement of 5x. Maximum axial CM performance with the K922M reached 225 N-s/MJ, or about ˜3x larger than the lateral CM values. These axial CM results are sharply higher than the 120 N/MW previously reported for long pulse (e.g., 10-18 μs) CO2 electric discharge lasers.

  5. Air-breathing hypersonic vehicle guidance and control studies: An integrated trajectory/control analysis methodology, phase 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hattis, Philip D.; Malchow, Harvey L.

    1992-01-01

    An integrated trajectory/control analysis algorithm has been used to generate trajectories and desired control strategies for two different hypersonic air-breathing vehicle models and orbit targets. Both models used cubic spline curve fit tabulated winged-cone accelerator vehicle representations. Near-fuel-optimal, horizontal takeoff trajectories, imposing a dynamic pressure limit of 1000 psf, were developed. The first model analysis case involved a polar orbit and included the dynamic effects of using elevons to maintain longitudinal trim. Analysis results indicated problems with the adequacy of the propulsion model and highlighted dynamic pressure/altitude instabilities when using vehicle angle of attack as a control variable. Also, the magnitude of computed elevon deflections to maintain trim suggested a need for alternative pitch moment management strategies. The second analysis case was reformulated to use vehicle pitch attitude relative to the local vertical as the control variable. A new, more realistic, air-breathing propulsion model was incorporated. Pitch trim calculations were dropped and an equatorial orbit was specified. Changes in flight characteristics due to the new propulsion model have been identified. Flight regimes demanding rapid attitude changes have been noted. Also, some issues that would affect design of closed-loop controllers were ascertained.

  6. Feasibility Study for a Near Term Demonstration of Laser-Sail Propulsion from the Ground to Low Earth Orbit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Montgomery, Edward E., IV; Johnson, Les; Thomas, Herbert D.

    2016-01-01

    This paper adds to the body of research related to the concept of propellant-less in-space propulsion utilizing an external high energy laser (HEL) to provide momentum to an ultra-lightweight (gossamer) spacecraft. It has been suggested that the capabilities of Space Situational Awareness assets and the advanced analytical tools available for fine resolution orbit determination make it possible to investigate the practicalities of a ground to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) demonstration at delivered power levels that only illuminate a spacecraft without causing damage to it. The degree to which this can be expected to produce a measurable change in the orbit of a low ballistic coefficient spacecraft is investigated. Key system characteristics and estimated performance are derived for a near term mission opportunity involving the LightSail 2 spacecraft and laser power levels modest in comparison to those proposed previously by Forward, Landis, or Marx. [1,2,3] A more detailed investigation of accessing LightSail 2 from Santa Rosa Island on Eglin Air Force Base on the United States coast of the Gulf of Mexico is provided to show expected results in a specific case.

  7. An experimental study of laser-supported plasmas for laser propulsion: Center director's discretionary fund project DFP-82-33

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eskridge, R. H.; Mccay, T. D.; Vanzandt, D. M.

    1987-01-01

    The rudiments of a rocket thruster, which receives its enthalpy from an energy source which is remotely beamed from a laser, is described. An experimental study, now partially complete, is discussed which will eventually provide a detailed understanding of the physics for assessing the feasibility of using hydrogen plasmas for accepting and converting this energy to enthalpy. A plasma ignition scheme which uses a pulsed CO2 laser was develped and the properites of the ignition spark documented, including breakdown intensities in hydrogen. A complete diagnostic system capable of determining plasma temperature and the plasma absorptivitiy for subsequent steady-state absorption of a high power CO2 laser beam are developed and demonstrative use is discussed for the preliminary case study, a two atmosphere laser supported argon plasma.

  8. Airbreathing Hypersonic Technology Vision Vehicles and Development Dreams

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McClinton, C. R.; Hunt, J. L.; Ricketts, R. H.; Reukauf, P.; Peddie, C. L.

    1999-01-01

    Significant advancements in hypersonic airbreathing vehicle technology have been made in the country's research centers and industry over the past 40 years. Some of that technology is being validated with the X-43 flight tests. This paper presents an overview of hypersonic airbreathing technology status within the US, and a hypersonic technology development plan. This plan builds on the nation's large investment in hypersonics. This affordable, incremental plan focuses technology development on hypersonic systems, which could be operating by the 2020's.

  9. Air-breathing adaptation in a marine Devonian lungfish.

    PubMed

    Clement, Alice M; Long, John A

    2010-08-23

    Recent discoveries of tetrapod trackways in 395 Myr old tidal zone deposits of Poland (Niedźwiedzki et al. 2010 Nature 463, 43-48 (doi:10.1038/nature.08623)) indicate that vertebrates had already ventured out of the water and might already have developed some air-breathing capacity by the Middle Devonian. Air-breathing in lungfishes is not considered to be a shared specialization with tetrapods, but evolved independently. Air-breathing in lungfishes has been postulated as starting in Middle Devonian times (ca 385 Ma) in freshwater habitats, based on a set of skeletal characters involved in air-breathing in extant lungfishes. New discoveries described herein of the lungfish Rhinodipterus from marine limestones of Australia identifies the node in dipnoan phylogeny where air-breathing begins, and confirms that lungfishes living in marine habitats had also developed specializations to breathe air by the start of the Late Devonian (ca 375 Ma). While invasion of freshwater habitats from the marine realm was previously suggested to be the prime cause of aerial respiration developing in lungfishes, we believe that global decline in oxygen levels during the Middle Devonian combined with higher metabolic costs is a more likely driver of air-breathing ability, which developed in both marine and freshwater lungfishes and tetrapodomorph fishes such as Gogonasus.

  10. Hypersonic airbreathing vehicle conceptual design (focus on aero-space plane)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, James L.; Martin, John G.

    1989-01-01

    The airbreathing single stage to orbit (SSTO) vehicle design environment is variable-rich, intricately networked and sensitivity intensive. As such, it represents a tremondous technology challenge. Creating a viable design will require sophisticated configuration/synthesis and the synergistic integration of advanced technologies across the discipline spectrum. In design exercises, reductions in the fuel weight-fraction requirements projected for an orbital vehicle concept can result from improvements in aerodynamics/controls, propulsion efficiencies and trajectory optimization; also, gains in the fuel weight-fraction achievable for such a concept can result from improvements in structural design, heat management techniques, and material properties. As these technology advances take place, closure on a viable vehicle design will be realizable.

  11. Evaluation of the propulsion control system of a planetary rover and design of a mast for an elevation scanning laser/multi-detector system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knaub, D.; Yerazunis, S. W.

    1978-01-01

    Vertical wheel loads, wheel speeds, and torque relationships are considered in the design of a propulsion system capable of responding to steering, slope climbing, and irregular local terrains. The system developed is applied to the RPI Mars roving vehicle. The mechanical system required to implement the elevation laser scanning/multidetector principle was the design and construction of a mechanical system for implementing the elevation scanning/multidetector principle is also discussed.

  12. NASA's Launch Propulsion Systems Technology Roadmap

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McConnaughey, Paul K.; Femminineo, Mark G.; Koelfgen, Syri J.; Lepsch, Roger A; Ryan, Richard M.; Taylor, Steven A.

    2012-01-01

    Safe, reliable, and affordable access to low-Earth (LEO) orbit is necessary for all of the United States (US) space endeavors. In 2010, NASA s Office of the Chief Technologist commissioned 14 teams to develop technology roadmaps that could be used to guide the Agency s and US technology investment decisions for the next few decades. The Launch Propulsion Systems Technology Area (LPSTA) team was tasked to address the propulsion technology challenges for access to LEO. The developed LPSTA roadmap addresses technologies that enhance existing solid or liquid propulsion technologies and their related ancillary systems or significantly advance the technology readiness level (TRL) of less mature systems like airbreathing, unconventional, and other launch technologies. In developing this roadmap, the LPSTA team consulted previous NASA, military, and industry studies as well as subject matter experts to develop their assessment of this field, which has fundamental technological and strategic impacts for US space capabilities.

  13. Geometry Modeling and Adaptive Control of Air-Breathing Hypersonic Vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vick, Tyler Joseph

    Air-breathing hypersonic vehicles have the potential to provide global reach and affordable access to space. Recent technological advancements have made scramjet-powered flight achievable, as evidenced by the successes of the X-43A and X-51A flight test programs over the last decade. Air-breathing hypersonic vehicles present unique modeling and control challenges in large part due to the fact that scramjet propulsion systems are highly integrated into the airframe, resulting in strongly coupled and often unstable dynamics. Additionally, the extreme flight conditions and inability to test fully integrated vehicle systems larger than X-51 before flight leads to inherent uncertainty in hypersonic flight. This thesis presents a means to design vehicle geometries, simulate vehicle dynamics, and develop and analyze control systems for hypersonic vehicles. First, a software tool for generating three-dimensional watertight vehicle surface meshes from simple design parameters is developed. These surface meshes are compatible with existing vehicle analysis tools, with which databases of aerodynamic and propulsive forces and moments can be constructed. A six-degree-of-freedom nonlinear dynamics simulation model which incorporates this data is presented. Inner-loop longitudinal and lateral control systems are designed and analyzed utilizing the simulation model. The first is an output feedback proportional-integral linear controller designed using linear quadratic regulator techniques. The second is a model reference adaptive controller (MRAC) which augments this baseline linear controller with an adaptive element. The performance and robustness of each controller are analyzed through simulated time responses to angle-of-attack and bank angle commands, while various uncertainties are introduced. The MRAC architecture enables the controller to adapt in a nonlinear fashion to deviations from the desired response, allowing for improved tracking performance, stability, and

  14. Characterization of energetic and non-energetic polymers for laser ablation propulsion applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paturi, Prem Kiran; Chelikani, Leela; Billa, Narasimha Rao; Guthikonda, Nagaraju; Jana, Tushar; Acrhem Team; School Of Chemistry Team

    2015-06-01

    Energetic Polymers, considered to be cleaner, environmental friendly materials are one of the primary candidates for future plasma thrusters. For e.g., energetic hydroxyl terminated polybutadiene (HTPB) is being used as a binder for high-performance composite propellants. Understanding the conversion of optical energy to kinetic energy is essential in evaluating these materials as thrusters. Spatio-temporal evolution of laser ablative (LA) and blow-off (BO) shock waves (SW) during laser excitation provide a valuable insight into the energy release of the polymers. LASW and LBOSW during 7 ns laser pulse (532 nm, 10Hz) interaction with ~ 200 micron thick HTPB and its variants with energetic additives taken in the form of a sheet were studied simultaneously using defocused shadowgraphic imaging over 0.2 - 30 μs time scales. The results were compared with non-energetic polyvinyl chloride (PVC) under same experimental conditions. The SW was observed to propagate faster through the HTPB variant compared to HTPB. Appearance of LBOSW at different time scales for the polymers revealed the shock propagation characteristics through the polymers. The work is supported by Defence Research and Developement Organization, India through Grants-in-Aid Program.

  15. Ground-to-space optical power transfer. [using laser propulsion for orbit transfer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mevers, G. E.; Hayes, C. L.; Soohoo, J. F.; Stubbs, R. M.

    1978-01-01

    Using laser radiation as the energy input to a rocket, it is possible to consider the transfer of large payloads economically between low initial orbits and higher energy orbits. In this paper we will discuss the results of an investigation to use a ground-based High Energy Laser (HEL) coupled to an adaptive antenna to transmit multi-megawatts of power to a satellite in low-earth orbit. Our investigation included diffraction effects, atmospheric transmission efficiency, adaptive compensation for atmospheric turbulence effects, including the servo bandwidth requirements for this correction, and the adaptive compensation for thermal blooming. For these evaluations we developed vertical profile models of atmospheric absorption, strength of optical turbulence (CN2), wind, temperature, and other parameters necessary to calculate system performance. Our atmospheric investigations were performed for CO2, 12C18O2 isotope, CO and DF wavelengths. For all of these considerations, output antenna locations of both sea level and mountain top (3.5 km above sea level) were used. Several adaptive system concepts were evaluated with a multiple source phased array concept being selected. This system uses an adaption technique of phase locking independent laser oscillators. When both system losses and atmospheric effects were assessed, the results predicted an overall power transfer efficiency of slightly greater than 50%.

  16. Laser doppler velocimeter system for subsonic jet mixer nozzle testing at the NASA Lewis Aeroacoustic Propulsion Lab

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Podboy, Gary G.; Bridges, James E.; Saiyed, Naseem H.; Krupar, Martin J.

    1995-01-01

    A laser Doppler velocimeter (LDV) system developed for the Aeroacoustic Propulsion Laboratory (APL) at the NASA Lewis Research Center is described. This system was developed to acquire detailed flow field data which could be used to quantify the effectiveness of internal exhaust gas mixers (IEGM's) and to verify and calibrate computational codes. The LDV was used as an orthogonal, three component system to measure the flow field downstream of the exit of a series of IEGM's and a reference axisymmetric splitter configuration. The LDV system was also used as a one component system to measure the internal axial flow within the nozzle tailpipe downstream of the mixers. These IEGM's were designed for low-bypass ratio turbofan engines. The data were obtained at a simulated low flight speed, high-power operating condition. The optical, seeding, and data acquisition systems of the LDV are described in detail. Sample flow field measurements are provided to illustrate the capabilities of the system at the time of this test, which represented the first use of LDV at the APL. A discussion of planned improvements to the LDV is also included.

  17. High Temperature Nanocomposites For Nuclear Thermal Propulsion and In-Space Fabrication by Hyperbaric Pressure Laser Chemical Vapor Deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maxwell, J. L.; Webb, N. D.; Espinoza, M.; Cook, S.; Houts, M.; Kim, T.

    Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is an indispensable technology for the manned exploration of the solar system. By using Hyperbaric Pressure Laser Chemical Vapor Deposition (HP-LCVD), the authors propose to design and build a promising next-generation fuel element composed of uranium carbide UC embedded in a latticed matrix of highly refractory Ta4HfC5 for an NTP rocket capable of sustaining temperatures up to 4000 K, enabling an Isp of up to 1250 s. Furthermore, HP-LCVD technology can also be harnessed to enable 3D rapid prototyping of a variety of materials including metals, ceramics and composites, opening up the possibility of in-space fabrication of components, replacement parts, difficult-to-launch solar sails and panels and a variety of other space structures. Additionally, rapid prototyping with HP-LCVD makes a feasible "live off the land" strategy of interplanetary and interstellar exploration ­ the precursors commonly used in the technology are found, often in abundance, on other solar system bodies either as readily harvestable gas (e.g. methane) or as a raw material that could be converted into a suitable precursor (e.g. iron oxide into ferrocene on Mars).

  18. 2-D Airbreathing Lightcraft Engine Experiments in Quiescent Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvador, Israel I.; Myrabo, Leik N.; Minucci, Marco A. S.; de Oliveira, Antonio C.; Toro, Paulo G. P.; Chanes, José B.; Rego, Israel S.

    2011-11-01

    Ground-breaking laser propulsion (LP) experiments were performed under quiescent conditions with a 25 cm wide, two-dimensional Lightcraft model using a Lumonics TEA-622 CO2 laser emitting ˜ 1 μs pulses. In preparation for subsequent hypersonic experiments, this static test campaign was conducted at ambient pressures of 0.06, 0.15, 0.30 and 1 bar with laser pulse energies of 150 to 230 J. Time-variant pressure distributions, generated over engine "absorption chamber" walls, were integrated to obtain total impulse and momentum coupling coefficients (Cm) representative of a single propulsion cycle. Schlieren visualization of laser-induced air breakdown and expanding blast waves was also accomplished. Surprisingly, the Cm results of 600-3000 Ns/MJ were 2.5x to 5x greater than previous results from smaller Lightcraft models; this suggests that higher static Cm performance can likely be achieved in larger scale LP engines. This research collaboration, forged between the USAF and Brazilian Air Force, was carried out at the Henry T. Nagamatsu Laboratory of Aerothermodynamics and Hypersonics in Brazil.

  19. JANNAF 35th Combustion Subcommittee and 17th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee Meeting: Joint Sessions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fry, Ronald S. (Editor); Gannaway, Mary T. (Editor); Rognan, Melanie (Editor)

    1998-01-01

    This publication is a compilation of 15 unclassified/unlimited technical papers presented at the 1998 meeting of the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) Combustion Subcommittee (CS) and Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee (PSHS) held jointly with the Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee (APS). The meeting was held on 7 - 11 December 1 998 at Raytheon Systems Company and the Marriott Hotel, Tucson, AZ. Topics covered include advanced ingredients and reaction kinetics in solid propellants and experimental diagnostic techniques.

  20. Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) Propulsion Workshop, volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chojnacki, Kent T.

    1992-01-01

    The goal of the Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) Propulsion Technology Workshop, was to impart technology information to the propulsion community with respect to hypersonic combined cycle propulsion capabilities. The major recommendation resulting from this technology workshop was as follows: conduct a systems-level applications study to define the desired propulsion system and vehicle technology requirements for LEO launch vehicles. All SSTO and TSTO options using the various propulsion systems (airbreathing combined cycle, rocket-based combined cycle, and all rocket) must be considered. Such a study should be accomplished as soon as possible. It must be conducted with a consistent set of ground rules and assumptions. Additionally, the study should be conducted before any major expenditures on a RBCC technology development program occur.

  1. Exotic power and propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forward, Robert L.

    1990-01-01

    The status of some exotic physical phenomena and unconventional spacecraft concepts that might produce breakthroughs in power and propulsion in the 21st Century are reviewed. The subjects covered include: electric, nuclear fission, nuclear fusion, antimatter, high energy density materials, metallic hydrogen, laser thermal, solar thermal, solar sail, magnetic sail, and tether propulsion.

  2. Advanced Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1996-01-01

    This presentation describes a number of advanced space propulsion technologies with the potential for meeting the need for dramatic reductions in the cost of access to space, and the need for new propulsion capabilities to enable bold new space exploration (and, ultimately, space exploitation) missions of the 21st century. For example, current Earth-to-orbit (e.g., low Earth orbit, LEO) launch costs are extremely high (ca. $10,000/kg); a factor 25 reduction (to ca. $400/kg) will be needed to produce the dramatic increases in space activities in both the civilian and government sectors identified in the Commercial Space Transportation Study (CSTS). Similarly, in the area of space exploration, all of the relatively 'easy' missions (e.g., robotic flybys, inner solar system orbiters and landers; and piloted short-duration Lunar missions) have been done. Ambitious missions of the next century (e.g., robotic outer-planet orbiters/probes, landers, rovers, sample returns; and piloted long-duration Lunar and Mars missions) will require major improvements in propulsion capability. In some cases, advanced propulsion can enable a mission by making it faster or more affordable, and in some cases, by directly enabling the mission (e.g., interstellar missions). As a general rule, advanced propulsion systems are attractive because of their low operating costs (e.g., higher specific impulse, ISD) and typically show the most benefit for relatively 'big' missions (i.e., missions with large payloads or AV, or a large overall mission model). In part, this is due to the intrinsic size of the advanced systems as compared to state-of-the-art (SOTA) chemical propulsion systems. Also, advanced systems often have a large 'infrastructure' cost, either in the form of initial R&D costs or in facilities hardware costs (e.g., laser or microwave transmission ground stations for beamed energy propulsion). These costs must then be amortized over a large mission to be cost-competitive with a SOTA

  3. Transcriptomic Analysis of Compromise Between Air-Breathing and Nutrient Uptake of Posterior Intestine in Loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus), an Air-Breathing Fish.

    PubMed

    Huang, Songqian; Cao, Xiaojuan; Tian, Xianchang

    2016-08-01

    Dojo loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) is an air-breathing fish species by using its posterior intestine to breathe on water surface. So far, the molecular mechanism about accessory air-breathing in fish is seldom addressed. Five cDNA libraries were constructed here for loach posterior intestines form T01 (the initial stage group), T02 (mid-stage of normal group), T03 (end stage of normal group), T04 (mid-stage of air-breathing inhibited group), and T05 (the end stage of air-breathing inhibited group) and subjected to perform RNA-seq to compare their transcriptomic profilings. A total of 92,962 unigenes were assembled, while 37,905 (40.77 %) unigenes were successfully annotated. 2298, 1091, and 3275 differentially expressed genes (fn1, ACE, EGFR, Pxdn, SDF, HIF, VEGF, SLC2A1, SLC5A8 etc.) were observed in T04/T02, T05/T03, and T05/T04, respectively. Expression levels of many genes associated with air-breathing and nutrient uptake varied significantly between normal and intestinal air-breathing inhibited group. Intraepithelial capillaries in posterior intestines of loaches from T05 were broken, while red blood cells were enriched at the surface of intestinal epithelial lining with 241 ± 39 cells per millimeter. There were periodic acid-schiff (PAS)-positive epithelial mucous cells in posterior intestines from both normal and air-breathing inhibited groups. Results obtained here suggested an overlap of air-breathing and nutrient uptake function of posterior intestine in loach. Intestinal air-breathing inhibition in loach would influence the posterior intestine's nutrient uptake ability and endothelial capillary structure stability. This study will contribute to our understanding on the molecular regulatory mechanisms of intestinal air-breathing in loach. PMID:27457889

  4. Feasibility study of air-breathing turbo-engines for horizontal take-off and landing space plane

    SciTech Connect

    Minoda, M.; Sakata, K.; Tamaki, T.; Saitoh, T.; Yasuda, A.

    1989-01-01

    Various concepts of air-breathing engines (ABEs) that could be used for a horizontal take-off and landing SSTO vehicle are investigated. The performances (with respect to thrust and the specific fuel consumption) of turboengines based on various technologies, including a turbojet with and without afterburner (TJ), turboramjet, and air-turbo-ram jet engines are compared. The mission capabilities of these ABEs for SSTO and TSTO vehicles is examined in terms of the ratio of the effective remaining weight (i.e., the weight on the orbit) to the take-off gross weight, using two-dimensional flight analysis. It was found that the dry TJ with the turbine inlet temperature 2000 C is one of the most promising candidates for the propulsion system of the SSTO vehicle, because of its small weight and high specific impulse. 6 refs.

  5. NASA Hypersonic Propulsion: Overview of Progress from 1995 to 2005

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cikanek, Harry A., III; Bartolotta, Paul A.; Klem, Mark D.; Rausch, Vince L.

    2007-01-01

    Hypersonic propulsion work supported by the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration had a primary focus on Space Transportation during the period from 1995 to 2005. The framework for these advances was established by policy and pursued with substantial funding. Many noteworthy advances were made, highlighted by the pinnacle flights of the X-43. This paper reviews and summarizes the programs and accomplishments of this era. The accomplishments are compared to the goals and objectives to lend an overarching perspective to what was achieved. At least dating back to the early days of the Space Shuttle program, NASA has had the objective of reducing the cost of access to space and concurrently improving safety and reliability. National Space Transportation Policy in 1994 coupled with a base of prior programs such as the National Aerospace Plane and the need to look beyond the Space Shuttle program set the stage for NASA to pursue Space Transportation Advances. Programs defined to pursue the advances represented a broad approach addressing classical rocket propulsion as well as airbreathing propulsion in various combinations and forms. The resulting portfolio of activities included systems analysis and design studies, discipline research and technology, component technology development, propulsion system ground test demonstration and flight demonstration. The types of propulsion systems that were pursued by these programs included classical rocket engines, "aerospike" rocket engines, high performance rocket engines, scram jets, rocket based combined cycles, and turbine based combined cycles. Vehicle architectures included single and two stage vehicles. Either single types of propulsion systems or combinations of the basic propulsion types were applied to both single and two stage vehicle design concepts. Some of the propulsion system design concepts were built and tested at full scale, large scale and small scale. Many flight demonstrators were

  6. Advanced propulsion activities in the USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrison, P. W.

    Advances in propulsion system performance are necessary to meet the projected requirements of future launch vehicles, orbit transfer vehicles, satellites and planetary spacecraft. Ongoing U.S. space propulsion research programs are aggressively pursuing the development of the technology to meet these requirements. This paper reviews advanced propulsion research in the USA. Work accomplished in 1985 and future plans for ongoing research programs are discussed. Theoretical and experimental research programs and system studies of augmented hydrazine, arcjet, magnetoplasma dynamic thruster, ion thruster, metastable chemical, solar thermal, light sail, microwave and laser propulsion, nuclear fission rockets, and fusion and antimatter propulsion systems are addressed.

  7. Electric propulsion and interstellar flight

    SciTech Connect

    Matloff, G.L.

    1987-01-01

    Two general classes of interstellar space-flights are defined: endothermic and exothermic. Endothermic methods utilize power sources external to the vehicle and associated technology. Faster exothermic methods utilize on-board propulsive power sources or energy-beam technology. Various proposed endothermic electric propulsion methods are described. These include solar electric rockets, mass drivers, and ramjets. A review of previously suggested exothermic electric propulsion methods is presented. Following this review is a detailed discussion of possible near future application of the beamed-laser ramjet, mainly for ultimate relativistic travel. Electric/magnetic techniques offer an excellent possibility for decelerating an interstellar vehicle, regardless of the acceleration technique. 20 references.

  8. Airbreathing Hypersonic Systems Focus at NASA Langley Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, James L.; Rausch, Vincent L.

    1998-01-01

    This paper presents the status of the airbreathing hypersonic airplane and space-access vehicle design matrix, reflects on the synergies and issues, and indicates the thrust of the effort to resolve the design matrix and to focus/advance systems technology maturation. Priority is given to the design of the vision operational vehicles followed by flow-down requirements to flight demonstrator vehicles and their design for eventual consideration in the Future-X Program.

  9. JANNAF 17th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cocchiaro, James E. (Editor); Gannaway, Mary T. (Editor); Rognan, Melanie (Editor)

    1998-01-01

    Volume 1, the first of two volumes is a compilation of 16 unclassified/unlimited technical papers presented at the 17th meeting of the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee (PSHS) held jointly with the 35th Combustion Subcommittee (CS) and Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee (APS). The meeting was held on 7 - 11 December 1998 at Raytheon Systems Company and the Marriott Hotel, Tucson, AZ. Topics covered include projectile and shaped charge jet impact vulnerability of munitions; thermal decomposition and cookoff behavior of energetic materials; damage and hot spot initiation mechanisms with energetic materials; detonation phenomena of solid energetic materials; and hazard classification, insensitive munitions, and propulsion systems safety.

  10. JANNAF 18th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cocchiaro, James E. (Editor); Gannaway, Mary T. (Editor)

    1999-01-01

    This volume, the first of two volumes is a compilation of 18 unclassified/unlimited-distribution technical papers presented at the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) 18th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee (PSHS) meeting held jointly with the 36th Combustion Subcommittee (CS) and 24th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee (APS) meetings. The meeting was held 18-21 October 1999 at NASA Kennedy Space Center and The DoubleTree Oceanfront Hotel, Cocoa Beach, Florida. Topics covered at the PSHS meeting include: shaped charge jet and kinetic energy penetrator impact vulnerability of gun propellants; thermal decomposition and cookoff behavior of energetic materials; violent reaction; detonation phenomena of solid energetic materials subjected to shock and impact stimuli; and hazard classification, insensitive munitions, and propulsion systems safety.

  11. JANNAF 19th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee Meeting. Volume 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cocchiaro, James E. (Editor); Kuckels, Melanie C. (Editor)

    2000-01-01

    This volume, the first of two volumes is a compilation of 25 unclassified/unlimited-distribution technical papers presented at the Joint Army-Navy-NASA-Air Force (JANNAF) 19th Propulsion Systems Hazards Subcommittee (PSHS) meeting held jointly with the 37th Combustion Subcommittee (CS) and 25th Airbreathing Propulsion Subcommittee (APS), and 1st Modeling and Simulation Subcommittee (MSS) meetings. The meeting was held 13-17 November 2000 at the Naval Postgraduate School and Hyatt Regency Hotel, Monterey, California. Topics covered at the PSHS meeting include: impact and thermal vulnerability of gun propellants; thermal decomposition and cookoff behavior of energetic materials; violent reaction and detonation phenomena of solid energetic materials subjected to shock and impact loading; and hazard classification, and insensitive munitions testing of propellants and propulsion systems.

  12. The Sensitivity of Precooled Air-Breathing Engine Performance to Heat Exchanger Design Parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webber, H.; Bond, A.; Hempsell, M.

    The issues relevant to propulsion design for Single Stage To Orbit (SSTO) vehicles are considered. In particular two air- breathing engine concepts involving precooling are compared; SABRE (Synergetic Air-Breathing and Rocket Engine) as designed for the Skylon SSTO launch vehicle, and a LACE (Liquid Air Cycle Engine) considered in the 1960's by the Americans for an early generation spaceplane. It is shown that through entropy minimisation the SABRE has made substantial gains in performance over the traditional LACE precooled engine concept, and has shown itself as the basis of a viable means of realising a SSTO vehicle. Further, it is demonstrated that the precooler is a major source of thermodynamic irreversibility within the engine cycle and that further reduction in entropy can be realised by increasing the heat transfer coefficient on the air side of the precooler. If this were to be achieved, it would improve the payload mass delivered to orbit by the Skylon launch vehicle by between 5 and 10%.

  13. Biannular Airbreathing Nozzle Rig (BANR) facility checkout and plug nozzle performance test data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cummings, Chase B.

    2010-09-01

    The motivation for development of a supersonic business jet (SSBJ) platform lies in its ability to create a paradigm shift in the speed and reach of commercial, private, and government travel. A full understanding of the performance capabilities of exhaust nozzle configurations intended for use in potential SSBJ propulsion systems is critical to the design of an aircraft of this type. Purdue University's newly operational Biannular Airbreathing Nozzle Rig (BANR) is a highly capable facility devoted to the testing of subscale nozzles of this type. The high accuracy, six-axis force measurement system and complementary mass flowrate measurement capabilities of the BANR facility make it rather ideally suited for exhaust nozzle performance appraisal. Detailed accounts pertaining to methods utilized in the proper checkout of these diagnostic capabilities are contained herein. Efforts to quantify uncertainties associated with critical BANR test measurements are recounted, as well. Results of a second hot-fire test campaign of a subscale Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation (GAC) axisymmetric, shrouded plug nozzle are presented. Determined test article performance parameters (nozzle thrust efficiencies and discharge coefficients) are compared to those of a previous test campaign and numerical simulations of the experimental set-up. Recently acquired data is compared to published findings pertaining to plug nozzle experiments of similar scale and operating range. Suggestions relating to the future advancement and improvement of the BANR facility are provided. Lessons learned with regards to test operations and calibration procedures are divulged in an attempt to aid future facility users, as well.

  14. Replacement of chemical rocket launchers by beamed energy propulsion.

    PubMed

    Fukunari, Masafumi; Arnault, Anthony; Yamaguchi, Toshikazu; Komurasaki, Kimiya

    2014-11-01

    Microwave Rocket is a beamed energy propulsion system that is expected to reach space at drastically lower cost. This cost reduction is estimated by replacing the first-stage engine and solid rocket boosters of the Japanese H-IIB rocket with Microwave Rocket, using a recently developed thrust model in which thrust is generated through repetitively pulsed microwave detonation with a reed-valve air-breathing system. Results show that Microwave Rocket trajectory, in terms of velocity versus altitude, can be designed similarly to the current H-IIB first stage trajectory. Moreover, the payload ratio can be increased by 450%, resulting in launch-cost reduction of 74%. PMID:25402933

  15. Effect of Correlation on Multi-Engine Rocket Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baker, J. R.; Breneman, J. E.

    1989-01-01

    A matter of great concern in the design and operation of multi-engine rocket propulsion systems is the effect of the premature shutdown of one engine on the vehicle. This probability that a premature shutdown will cause a vehicle loss is termed correlation. Based on airbreathing experiences as well as rocket engine data the best estimate of this correlation is made and then applied to the overall multi-engine reliability problem to demonstrate its potential effect. At this point, follow-on analyses are pointed out that illustrate how any potential failures that may cause a correlatable event can be eliminated; thus bringing this correlation to almost 0.

  16. Replacement of chemical rocket launchers by beamed energy propulsion.

    PubMed

    Fukunari, Masafumi; Arnault, Anthony; Yamaguchi, Toshikazu; Komurasaki, Kimiya

    2014-11-01

    Microwave Rocket is a beamed energy propulsion system that is expected to reach space at drastically lower cost. This cost reduction is estimated by replacing the first-stage engine and solid rocket boosters of the Japanese H-IIB rocket with Microwave Rocket, using a recently developed thrust model in which thrust is generated through repetitively pulsed microwave detonation with a reed-valve air-breathing system. Results show that Microwave Rocket trajectory, in terms of velocity versus altitude, can be designed similarly to the current H-IIB first stage trajectory. Moreover, the payload ratio can be increased by 450%, resulting in launch-cost reduction of 74%.

  17. Heat transfer in space power and propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hendricks, R. C.; Simoneau, R. J.; Dunning, J. W., Jr.

    1986-01-01

    NASA's planned Space Station has projected power requirements in the 75-300 kW range; attention is presently given to the range of power system configurations thus far proposed. These are a silicon solar cell system incorporating regenerative fuel cell or battery storage, with a 10-year lifetime, a solar-dynamic power system with phase-change or regenerative fuel cell energy storage, and a combination of these two alternatives. A development status evaluation is also given for the propulsion systems that may be used by next-generation boosters. These include such novel airbreathing systems as turboramjets, air liquefaction cycle rockets, airturboramjet/rockets, and supersonic combustion ramjets.

  18. Experimental Investigation of Axial and Beam-Riding Propulsive Physics with TEA CO{sub 2} laser

    SciTech Connect

    Kenoyer, D. A.; Salvador, I.; Myrabo, L. N.; Notaro, S. N.; Bragulla, P. W.

    2010-10-08

    A twin Lumonics K922M pulsed TEA CO{sub 2} laser system (pulse duration of approximately 100 ns FWHM spike, with optional 1 {mu}s tail, depending upon laser gas mix) was employed to experimentally measure both axial thrust and beam-riding behavior of Type no. 200 lightcraft engines, using a ballistic pendulum and Angular Impulse Measurement Device (AIMD, respectively. Beam-riding forces and moments were examined along with engine thrust-vectoring behavior, as a function of: a) laser beam lateral offset from the vehicle axis of symmetry; b) laser pulse energy ({approx}12 to 40 joules); c) pulse duration (100 ns, and 1 {mu}s); and d) engine size (97.7 mm to 161.2 mm). Maximum lateral momentum coupling coefficients (C{sub M}) of 75 N-s/MJ were achieved with the K922M laser whereas previous PLVTS laser (420 J, 18 {mu}s duration) results reached only 15 N-s/MJ--an improvement of 5x. Maximum axial C{sub M} performance with the K922M reached 225 N-s/MJ, or about {approx}3x larger than the lateral C{sub M} values. These axial C{sub M} results are sharply higher than the 120 N/MW previously reported for long pulse (e.g., 10-18 {mu}s)CO{sub 2} electric discharge lasers.

  19. Role of Air-Breathing Pulse Detonation Engines in High Speed Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Povinelli, Louis A.; Lee, Jin-Ho; Anderberg, Michael O.

    2001-01-01

    In this paper, the effect of flight Mach number on the relative performance of pulse detonation engines and gas turbine engines is investigated. The effect of ram and mechanical compression on combustion inlet temperature and the subsequent sensible heat release is determined. Comparison of specific thrust, fuel consumption and impulse for the two engines show the relative benefits over the Mach number range.

  20. Study of Unsteady, Sphere-Driven, Shock-Induced Combustion for Application to Hypervelocity Airbreathing Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Axdahl, Erik; Kumar, Ajay; Wilhite, Alan

    2011-01-01

    A premixed, shock-induced combustion engine has been proposed in the past as a viable option for operating in the Mach 10 to 15 range in a single stage to orbit vehicle. In this approach, a shock is used to initiate combustion in a premixed fuel/air mixture. Apparent advantages over a conventional scramjet engine include a shorter combustor that, in turn, results in reduced weight and heating loads. There are a number of technical challenges that must be understood and resolved for a practical system: premixing of fuel and air upstream of the combustor without premature combustion, understanding and control of instabilities of the shock-induced combustion front, ability to produce sufficient thrust, and the ability to operate over a range of Mach numbers. This study evaluated the stability of the shock-induced combustion front in a model problem of a sphere traveling in a fuel/air mixture at high Mach numbers. A new, rapid analysis method was developed and applied to study such flows. In this method the axisymmetric, body-centric Navier-Stokes equations were expanded about the stagnation streamline of a sphere using the local similarity hypothesis in order to reduce the axisymmetric equations to a quasi-1D set of equations. These reduced sets of equations were solved in the stagnation region for a number of flow conditions in a premixed, hydrogen/air mixture. Predictions from the quasi-1D analysis showed very similar stable or unstable behavior of the shock-induced combustion front as compared to experimental studies and higher-fidelity computational results. This rapid analysis tool could be used in parametric studies to investigate effects of fuel rich/lean mixtures, non-uniformity in mixing, contaminants in the mixture, and different chemistry models.

  1. Filtered Mass Density Function for Design Simulation of High Speed Airbreathing Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drozda, T. G.; Sheikhi, R. M.; Givi, Peyman

    2001-01-01

    The objective of this research is to develop and implement new methodology for large eddy simulation of (LES) of high-speed reacting turbulent flows. We have just completed two (2) years of Phase I of this research. This annual report provides a brief and up-to-date summary of our activities during the period: September 1, 2000 through August 31, 2001. In the work within the past year, a methodology termed "velocity-scalar filtered density function" (VSFDF) is developed and implemented for large eddy simulation (LES) of turbulent flows. In this methodology the effects of the unresolved subgrid scales (SGS) are taken into account by considering the joint probability density function (PDF) of all of the components of the velocity and scalar vectors. An exact transport equation is derived for the VSFDF in which the effects of the unresolved SGS convection, SGS velocity-scalar source, and SGS scalar-scalar source terms appear in closed form. The remaining unclosed terms in this equation are modeled. A system of stochastic differential equations (SDEs) which yields statistically equivalent results to the modeled VSFDF transport equation is constructed. These SDEs are solved numerically by a Lagrangian Monte Carlo procedure. The consistency of the proposed SDEs and the convergence of the Monte Carlo solution are assessed by comparison with results obtained by an Eulerian LES procedure in which the corresponding transport equations for the first two SGS moments are solved. The unclosed SGS convection, SGS velocity-scalar source, and SGS scalar-scalar source in the Eulerian LES are replaced by corresponding terms from VSFDF equation. The consistency of the results is then analyzed for a case of two dimensional mixing layer.

  2. Air-breathing hypersonic vehicle guidance and control studies; An integrated trajectory/control analysis methodology: Phase 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hattis, Philip D.; Malchow, Harvey L.

    1991-01-01

    A tool which generates optimal trajectory/control histories in an integrated manner is generically adapted to the treatment of single-stage-to-orbit air-breathing hypersonic vehicles. The methodology is implemented as a two point boundary value problem solution technique. Its use permits an assessment of an entire near-minimum-fuel trajectory and desired control strategy from takeoff to orbit while satisfying physically derived inequality constraints and while achieving efficient propulsive mode phasing. A simpler analysis strategy that partitions the trajectory into several boundary condition matched segments is also included to construct preliminary trajectory and control history representations with less computational burden than is required for the overall flight profile assessment. A demonstration was accomplished using a tabulated example (winged-cone accelerator) vehicle model that is combined with a newly developed multidimensional cubic spline data smoothing routine. A constrained near-fuel-optimal trajectory, imposing a dynamic pressure limit of 1000 psf, was developed from horizontal takeoff to 20,000 ft/sec relative air speed while aiming for a polar orbit. Previously unspecified propulsive discontinuities were located. Flight regimes demanding rapid attitude changes were identified, dictating control effector and closed-loop controller authority was ascertained after evaluating effector use for vehicle trim. Also, inadequacies in vehicle model representations and specific subsystem models with insufficient fidelity were determined based on unusual control characteristics and/or excessive sensitivity to uncertainty.

  3. Plasma confinement to enhance the momentum coupling coefficient in ablative laser micro-propulsion: a novel approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Muhammad Raza; Jamil, Yasir; Qaiser Zakaria, M.; Hussain, Tousif; Ahmad, Riaz

    2015-07-01

    We introduce for the first time the novel idea of manipulating the momentum coupling coefficient using plasma confinement and shock wave reflection from the cavity walls. The plasma was confined using cylindrical geometries of various cavity aspect ratios to manipulate the momentum coupling coefficient (C m ). The Nd: YAG laser (532 nm, 5 ns pulse duration) was focused on the ferrite sample surface to produce plasma in a region surrounded by cylindrical cavity walls. The multiple reflections of the shockwaves from the cavity walls confined the laser-induced plasma to the central region of the cavity that subsequently resulted in a significant enhancement of the momentum coupling coefficient values. The plasma shielding effect has also been observed for particular values of laser fluencies and cavity aspect ratios. Compared with the direct ablation, the confined ablation provides an effective way to obtain high C m values.

  4. Propulsion materials

    SciTech Connect

    Wall, Edward J.; Sullivan, Rogelio A.; Gibbs, Jerry L.

    2008-01-01

    The Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Vehicle Technologies (OVT) is pleased to introduce the FY 2007 Annual Progress Report for the Propulsion Materials Research and Development Program. Together with DOE national laboratories and in partnership with private industry and universities across the United States, the program continues to engage in research and development (R&D) that provides enabling materials technology for fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly commercial and passenger vehicles.

  5. Technology Roadmap for Dual-Mode Scramjet Propulsion to Support Space-Access Vision Vehicle Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cockrell, Charles E., Jr.; Auslender, Aaron H.; Guy, R. Wayne; McClinton, Charles R.; Welch, Sharon S.

    2002-01-01

    Third-generation reusable launch vehicle (RLV) systems are envisioned that utilize airbreathing and combined-cycle propulsion to take advantage of potential performance benefits over conventional rocket propulsion and address goals of reducing the cost and enhancing the safety of systems to reach earth orbit. The dual-mode scramjet (DMSJ) forms the core of combined-cycle or combination-cycle propulsion systems for single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) vehicles and provides most of the orbital ascent energy. These concepts are also relevant to two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) systems with an airbreathing first or second stage. Foundation technology investments in scramjet propulsion are driven by the goal to develop efficient Mach 3-15 concepts with sufficient performance and operability to meet operational system goals. A brief historical review of NASA scramjet development is presented along with a summary of current technology efforts and a proposed roadmap. The technology addresses hydrogen-fueled combustor development, hypervelocity scramjets, multi-speed flowpath performance and operability, propulsion-airframe integration, and analysis and diagnostic tools.

  6. Advanced controls for airbreathing engines, volume 3: Allison gas turbine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bough, R. M.

    1993-01-01

    The application of advanced control concepts to airbreathing engines may yield significant improvements in aircraft/engine performance and operability. Screening studies of advanced control concepts for airbreathing engines were conducted by three major domestic aircraft engine manufacturers to determine the potential impact of concepts on turbine engine performance and operability. The purpose of the studies was to identify concepts which offered high potential yet may incur high research and development risk. A target suite of proposed advanced control concepts was formulated and evaluated in a two-phase study to quantify each concept's impact on desired engine characteristics. To aid in the evaluation specific aircraft/engine combinations were considered: a Military High Performance Fighter mission, a High Speed Civil Transport mission, and a Civil Tiltrotor mission. Each of the advanced control concepts considered in the study are defined and described. The concept potential impact on engine performance was determined. Relevant figures of merit on which to evaluate the concepts are determined. Finally, the concepts are ranked with respect to the target aircraft/engine missions. A final report describing the screening studies was prepared by each engine manufacturer. Volume 3 of these reports describes the studies performed by the Allison Gas Turbine Division.

  7. Screening studies of advanced control concepts for airbreathing engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ouzts, Peter J.; Lorenzo, Carl F.; Merrill, Walter C.

    1993-01-01

    The application of advanced control concepts to airbreathing engines may yield significant improvements in aircraft/engine performance and operability. Accordingly, the NASA Lewis Research Center has conducted screening studies of advanced control concepts for airbreathing engines to determine their potential impact on turbine engine performance and operability. The purpose of the studies was to identify concepts which offered high potential yet may incur high research and development risk. A target suite of proposed concepts was formulated by NASA and industry. These concepts were evaluated in a two phase study to quantify each concept's impact on desired engine characteristics. To aid in the evaluation, three target aircraft/engine combinations were considered: a military high performance fighter mission, a high speed civil transport mission, and a civil tiltrotor mission. Each of the advanced control concepts considered in the study were defined and described. The concept's potential impact on engine performance was determined. Relevant figures of merit on which to evaluate the concepts were also determined. Finally, the concepts were ranked with respect to the target aircraft/engine missions.

  8. Screening studies of advanced control concepts for airbreathing engines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ouzts, Peter J.; Lorenzo, Carl F.; Merrill, Walter C.

    1992-01-01

    The application of advanced control concepts to airbreathing engines may yield significant improvements in aircraft/engine performance and operability. Accordingly, the NASA Lewis Research Center has conducted screening studies of advanced control concepts for airbreathing engines to determine their potential impact on turbine engine performance and operability. The purpose of the studies was to identify concepts which offered high potential yet may incur high research and development risk. A target suite of proposed concepts was formulated by NASA and industry. These concepts were evaluated in a two phase study to quantify each concept's impact on desired engine characteristics. To aid in the evaluation, three target aircraft/engine combinations were considered: a military high performance fighter mission, a high speed civil transport mission, and a civil tiltrotor mission. Each of the advanced control concepts considered in the study were defined and described. The concept's potential impact on engine performance was determined. Relevant figures of merit on which to evaluate the concepts were also determined. Finally, the concepts were ranked with respect to the target aircraft/engine missions.

  9. Space transportation systems requirements derived from the propulsion performance reported in The Hypersonic and Combined Cycle Session at the 1991 IAF Congress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czysz, Paul A.; Parks, Oliver L.

    1992-08-01

    The global status of investigations of combined cycle engines is reviewed to compare the performance levels, design strategies, and other key issues affecting hypersonic propulsion technologies. Isp data are given for combined-cycle propulsion systems that provide good fuel consumption than turbojet systems up to Mach 7. Specific attention is given to: (1) the array of retractable fuel-distribution and thrust-producing devices in the engine; and (2) the resulting diversity in engine types. Results are given for sizing to compare the speed, weight, and performances of the Yamanaka, Rudakov, Builder, and hybrid rockets tested. The vehicles are larger and lighter when the airbreather is pushed limited to chemical energy to produce thrust. The airbreathing propulsion systems are shown to perform well with high densities of hydrogen fuel. The integrated concept resulting from the session is shown to be competitive with any reported system.

  10. Engines and innovation: Lewis Laboratory and American propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dawson, Virginia Parker

    1991-01-01

    This book is an institutional history of the NASA Lewis Research Center, located in Cleveland, Ohio, from 1940, when Congress authorized funding for a third laboratory for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, through the 1980s. The history of the laboratory is discussed in relation to the development of American propulsion technology, with particular focus on the transition in the 1940s from the use of piston engines in airplanes to jet propulsion and that from air-breathing engines to rocket technology when the National Aeronautics and Space Administration was established in 1958. The personalities and research philosophies of the people who shaped the history of the laboratory are discussed, as is the relationship of Lewis Research Center to the Case Institute of Technology.

  11. NASA's Advanced Propulsion Technology Activities for Third Generation Fully Reusable Launch Vehicle Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hueter, Uwe

    2000-01-01

    NASA's Office of Aeronautics and Space Transportation Technology (OASTT) established the following three major goals, referred to as "The Three Pillars for Success": Global Civil Aviation, Revolutionary Technology Leaps, and Access to Space. The Advanced Space Transportation Program Office (ASTP) at the NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. focuses on future space transportation technologies under the "Access to Space" pillar. The Propulsion Projects within ASTP under the investment area of Spaceliner100, focus on the earth-to-orbit (ETO) third generation reusable launch vehicle technologies. The goals of Spaceliner 100 is to reduce cost by a factor of 100 and improve safety by a factor of 10,000 over current conditions. The ETO Propulsion Projects in ASTP, are actively developing combination/combined-cycle propulsion technologies that utilized airbreathing propulsion during a major portion of the trajectory. System integration, components, materials and advanced rocket technologies are also being pursued. Over the last several years, one of the main thrusts has been to develop rocket-based combined cycle (RBCC) technologies. The focus has been on conducting ground tests of several engine designs to establish the RBCC flowpaths performance. Flowpath testing of three different RBCC engine designs is progressing. Additionally, vehicle system studies are being conducted to assess potential operational space access vehicles utilizing combined-cycle propulsion systems. The design, manufacturing, and ground testing of a scale flight-type engine are planned. The first flight demonstration of an airbreathing combined cycle propulsion system is envisioned around 2005. The paper will describe the advanced propulsion technologies that are being being developed under the ETO activities in the ASTP program. Progress, findings, and future activities for the propulsion technologies will be discussed.

  12. Instrumentation requirements from the user's view. [For airbreathing hypersonic engines

    SciTech Connect

    Harsha, P.T.

    1988-01-01

    The use of combustor diagnostics is considered from the point of view of demonstration of performance of an airbreathing hypersonic engine. The basic need is seen to be that of providing the data necessary to verify performance predictions for the engine as installed in the airplane. This necessitates the use of a diagnostics capability that can provide the inputs required by the computational analyses that will be used to assess this performance. Because of the cost of ground test facilities, a premium is placed on measurement technique reliability and redundancy of instrumentation. A mix of nonintrusive optical techniques and probe-based measurements is seen to be the best approach using current diagnostics capability; one such instrument mix is outlined for a ramjet/scramjet test program. 11 references.

  13. A generic fast airbreathing first stage TSTO vehicle - RADIANCE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, Alain; Dufour, Alain

    1992-12-01

    A concept is considered that reducing the delta V to be provided by the second stage reduces its mass and, hence, may allow a down scaling of the first stage despite the higher staging Mach number. The concept is based on a two-stage-to-orbit vehicle called RADIANCE that stages at Mach 12 with an airbreathing first stage and a rocket-powered second stage. A fairing is provided to avoid aerodynamic interactions between the stages. RADIANCE takes off horizontally using an integral landing gear. The booster lands horizontally on a conventional runway. After having completed its orbital mission the orbiter returns through the atmosphere for an unpowered landing to the launch base. It is noted that RADIANCE hampered by the high drag losses inherently coupled with its booster size.

  14. Composite predictive flight control for airbreathing hypersonic vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Jun; Zhao, Zhenhua; Li, Shihua; Zheng, Wei Xing

    2014-09-01

    The robust optimised tracking control problem for a generic airbreathing hypersonic vehicle (AHV) subject to nonvanishing mismatched disturbances/uncertainties is investigated in this paper. A baseline nonlinear model predictive control (MPC) method is firstly introduced for optimised tracking control of the nominal dynamics. A nonlinear-disturbance-observer-based control law is then developed for robustness enhancement in the presence of both external disturbances and uncertainties. Compared with the existing robust tracking control methods for AHVs, the proposed composite nonlinear MPC method obtains not only promising robustness and disturbance rejection performance but also optimised nominal tracking control performance. The merits of the proposed method are validated by implementing simulation studies on the AHV system.

  15. Computational effects of inlet representation on powered hypersonic, airbreathing models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huebner, Lawrence D.; Tatum, Kenneth E.

    1993-01-01

    Computational results are presented to illustrate the powered aftbody effects of representing the scramjet inlet on a generic hypersonic vehicle with a fairing, to divert the external flow, as compared to an operating flow-through scramjet inlet. This study is pertinent to the ground testing of hypersonic, airbreathing models employing scramjet exhaust flow simulation in typical small-scale hypersonic wind tunnels. The comparison of aftbody effects due to inlet representation is well-suited for computational study, since small model size typically precludes the ability to ingest flow into the inlet and perform exhaust simulation at the same time. Two-dimensional analysis indicates that, although flowfield differences exist for the two types of inlet representations, little, if any, difference in surface aftbody characteristics is caused by fairing over the inlet.

  16. Electric vehicle propulsion alternatives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Secunde, R. R.; Schuh, R. M.; Beach, R. F.

    1983-01-01

    Propulsion technology development for electric vehicles is summarized. Analytical studies, technology evaluation, and the development of technology for motors, controllers, transmissions, and complete propulsion systems are included.

  17. Low Thrust Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This video presents an overview of low thrust rocket engine propulsion concepts for space missions. Chemical and electrical rocket engines are shown. Animation illustrates various propulsion applications.

  18. Theme and variations: amphibious air-breathing intertidal fishes.

    PubMed

    Martin, K L

    2014-03-01

    Over 70 species of intertidal fishes from 12 families breathe air while emerging from water. Amphibious intertidal fishes generally have no specialized air-breathing organ but rely on vascularized mucosae and cutaneous surfaces in air to exchange both oxygen and carbon dioxide. They differ from air-breathing freshwater fishes in morphology, physiology, ecology and behaviour. Air breathing and terrestrial activity are present to varying degrees in intertidal fish species, correlated with the tidal height of their habitat. The gradient of amphibious lifestyle includes passive remainers that stay in the intertidal zone as tides ebb, active emergers that deliberately leave water in response to poor aquatic conditions and highly mobile amphibious skipper fishes that may spend more time out of water than in it. Normal terrestrial activity is usually aerobic and metabolic rates in air and water are similar. Anaerobic metabolism may be employed during forced exercise or when exposed to aquatic hypoxia. Adaptations for amphibious life include reductions in gill surface area, increased reliance on the skin for respiration and ion exchange, high affinity of haemoglobin for oxygen and adjustments to ventilation and metabolism while in air. Intertidal fishes remain close to water and do not travel far terrestrially, and are unlikely to migrate or colonize new habitats at present, although in the past this may have happened. Many fish species spawn in the intertidal zone, including some that do not breathe air, as eggs and embryos that develop in the intertidal zone benefit from tidal air emergence. With air breathing, amphibious intertidal fishes survive in a variable habitat with minimal adjustments to existing structures. Closely related species in different microhabitats provide unique opportunities for comparative studies.

  19. Air-breathing fishes in aquaculture. What can we learn from physiology?

    PubMed

    Lefevre, S; Wang, T; Jensen, A; Cong, N V; Huong, D T T; Phuong, N T; Bayley, M

    2014-03-01

    During the past decade, the culture of air-breathing fish species has increased dramatically and is now a significant global source of protein for human consumption. This development has generated a need for specific information on how to maximize growth and minimize the environmental effect of culture systems. Here, the existing data on metabolism in air-breathing fishes are reviewed, with the aim of shedding new light on the oxygen requirements of air-breathing fishes in aquaculture, reaching the conclusion that aquatic oxygenation is much more important than previously assumed. In addition, the possible effects on growth of the recurrent exposure to deep hypoxia and associated elevated concentrations of carbon dioxide, ammonia and nitrite, that occurs in the culture ponds used for air-breathing fishes, are discussed. Where data on air-breathing fishes are simply lacking, data for a few water-breathing species will be reviewed, to put the physiological effects into a growth perspective. It is argued that an understanding of air-breathing fishes' respiratory physiology, including metabolic rate, partitioning of oxygen uptake from air and water in facultative air breathers, the critical oxygen tension, can provide important input for the optimization of culture practices. Given the growing importance of air breathers in aquaculture production, there is an urgent need for further data on these issues.

  20. LISA Propulsion Module Separation Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merkowitz, Stephen

    2004-01-01

    The Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) mission is a space-borne gravitational wave detector consisting of three spacecraft in heliocentric orbit. Each spacecraft is delivered to it operational orbit by a propulsion module. Because of the strict thermal and mass balancing requirements of LISA, the baseline mission concept requires that the propulsion module separate from the sciencecraft after delivery. The only propulsion system currently baselined for the sciencecraft are micronewton level thrusters, such as FEEP or colloid thrusters, that are used to balance the 30-40 microN of solar radiation pressure and provide the drag-free and attitude control of the spacecraft. Due to these thrusters limited authority, the separation of the propulsion module from the sciencecraft must be well controlled to not induce a large tip-off rotation of the sciencecraft. We present here the results of a design study of the propulsion module separation system that is shown to safely deliver the LISA sciencecraft to its final operational orbit.

  1. Inlet Aerodynamics and Ram Drag of Laser-Propelled Lightcraft Vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langener, Tobias; Myrabo, Leik; Rusak, Zvi

    2010-05-01

    Numerical simulations are used to study the aerodynamic inlet properties of three axisymmetric configurations of laser-propelled Lightcraft vehicles operating at subsonic, transonic and supersonic speeds up to Mach 5. The 60 cm vehicles were sized for launching 0.1-1.0 kg nanosatellites with combined-cycle airbreathing/rocket engines, transitioning between propulsion modes at roughly Mach 5-6. Results provide the pressure, temperature, density, and velocity flowfields around and through the three representative vehicle/engine configurations, as well as giving the resulting ram drag and total drag coefficients—all as a function of flight Mach number. Simulations with rotating boundaries were also carried out, since for stability reasons, Lightcraft are normally spun up before lift-off. Given the three alternatives, it is demonstrated that the optimal geometry for minimum drag is the configuration with a parabola nose; hence, these inlet flow conditions are being applied in subsequent "direct connect" 2D laser propulsion experiments in a small transonic flow facility.

  2. Effect of aeroelastic-propulsive interactions on flight dynamics of a hypersonic vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raney, David L.; Mcminn, John D.; Pototzky, Anthony S.; Wooley, Christine L.

    1993-01-01

    The desire to achieve orbit-on-demand access to space with rapid turn-around capability and aircraft-like processing operations has given rise to numerous hypersonic aerospace plane design concepts which would take off horizontally from a conventional runway and employ air-breathing scramjet propulsion systems for acceleration to orbital speeds. Most of these air-breathing hypersonic vehicle concepts incorporate an elongated fuselage forebody to act as the aerodynamic compression surface for a scramjet combustor module. This type of airframe-integrated scramjet propulsion system tends to be highly sensitive to inlet conditions and angle-of-attack perturbations. Furthermore, the basic configuration of the fuselage, with its elongated and tapered forebody, produces relatively low frequency elastic modes which will cause perturbations in the combustor inlet conditions due to the oscillation of the forebody compression surface. The flexibility of the forebody compression surface, together with sensitivity of scramjet propulsion systems to inlet conditions, creates the potential for an unprecedented form of aeroelastic-propulsive interaction in which deflections of the vehicle fuselage give rise to propulsion transients, producing force and moment variations that may adversely impact the longitudinal flight dynamics and/or excite the elastic modes. These propulsive force and moment variations may have an appreciable impact on the performance, guidance, and control of a hypersonic aerospace plane. The objectives of this research are to quantify the magnitudes of propulsive force and moment perturbations resulting from elastic deformation of a representative hypersonic vehicle, and to assess the potential impact of these perturbations on the vehicle's longitudinal flight dynamics.

  3. Integrated Propulsion/Vehicle System Structurally Optimized

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunter, James E.; McCurdy, David R.

    2003-01-01

    Ongoing research and testing are essential in the development of air-breathing hypersonic propulsion technology, and this year some positive advancement was made at the NASA Glenn Research Center. Recent work performed for GTX, a rocket-based combined-cycle, single-stage-to-orbit concept, included structural assessments of both the engine and flight vehicle. In the development of air-breathing engine technology, it is impractical to design and optimize components apart from the fully integrated system because tradeoffs must be made between performance and structural capability. Efforts were made to control the flight trajectory, for example, to minimize the aerodynamic heating effects. Structural optimization was applied to evaluate concept feasibility and was instrumental in the determination of the gross liftoff weight of the integrated system. Achieving low Earth orbit with even a small payload requires an aggressive approach to weight minimization through the use of lightweight, oxidation-resistant composite materials. Assessing the integrated system involved investigating the flight trajectory to determine where the critical load events occur in flight and then generating the corresponding environment at each of these events. Structural evaluation requires the mapping of the critical flight loads to finite element models, including the combined effects of aerodynamic, inertial, combustion, and other loads. NASA s APAS code was used to generate aerodynamic pressure and temperature profiles at each critical event. The radiation equilibrium surface temperatures from APAS were used to predict temperatures through the thickness. Heat transfer solutions using NASA's MINIVER code and the SINDA code (Cullimore & Ring Technologies, Littleton, CO) were calculated at selective points external to the integrated vehicle system and then extrapolated over the entire exposed surface. FORTRAN codes were written to expedite the finite element mapping of the aerodynamic heating

  4. Space propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kazaroff, John M.

    1993-01-01

    Lewis Research Center is developing broad-based new technologies for space chemical engines to satisfy long-term needs of ETO launch vehicles and other vehicles operating in and beyond Earth orbit. Specific objectives are focused on high performance LO2/LH2 engines providing moderate thrusts of 7,5-200 klb. This effort encompasses research related to design analysis and manufacturing processes needed to apply advanced materials to subcomponents, components, and subsystems of space-based systems and related ground-support equipment. High-performance space-based chemical engines face a number of technical challenges. Liquid hydrogen turbopump impellers are often so large that they cannot be machined from a single piece, yet high stress at the vane/shroud interface makes bonding extremely difficult. Tolerances on fillets are critical on large impellers. Advanced materials and fabricating techniques are needed to address these and other issues of interest. Turbopump bearings are needed which can provide reliable, long life operation at high speed and high load with low friction losses. Hydrostatic bearings provide good performance, but transients during pump starts and stops may be an issue because no pressurized fluid is available unless a separate bearing pressurization system is included. Durable materials and/or coatings are needed that can demonstrate low wear in the harsh LO2/LH2 environment. Advanced materials are also needed to improve the lifetime, reliability and performance of other propulsion system elements such as seals and chambers.

  5. Space propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazaroff, John M.

    1993-02-01

    Lewis Research Center is developing broad-based new technologies for space chemical engines to satisfy long-term needs of ETO launch vehicles and other vehicles operating in and beyond Earth orbit. Specific objectives are focused on high performance LO2/LH2 engines providing moderate thrusts of 7,5-200 klb. This effort encompasses research related to design analysis and manufacturing processes needed to apply advanced materials to subcomponents, components, and subsystems of space-based systems and related ground-support equipment. High-performance space-based chemical engines face a number of technical challenges. Liquid hydrogen turbopump impellers are often so large that they cannot be machined from a single piece, yet high stress at the vane/shroud interface makes bonding extremely difficult. Tolerances on fillets are critical on large impellers. Advanced materials and fabricating techniques are needed to address these and other issues of interest. Turbopump bearings are needed which can provide reliable, long life operation at high speed and high load with low friction losses. Hydrostatic bearings provide good performance, but transients during pump starts and stops may be an issue because no pressurized fluid is available unless a separate bearing pressurization system is included. Durable materials and/or coatings are needed that can demonstrate low wear in the harsh LO2/LH2 environment. Advanced materials are also needed to improve the lifetime, reliability and performance of other propulsion system elements such as seals and chambers.

  6. New Technology and Lunar Power Option for Power Beaming Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Kare, J; Early, J; Krupke, W; Beach, R

    2004-10-11

    Orbit raising missions (LEO to GEO or beyond) are the only missions with enough current traffic to be seriously considered for near-term power beaming propulsion. Even these missions cannot justify the development expenditures required to deploy the required new laser, optical and propulsion technologies or the programmatic risks. To be deployed, the laser and optics technologies must be spin-offs of other funded programs. The manned lunar base nighttime power requirements may justify a major power beaming program with 2MW lasers and large optical systems. New laser and optical technologies may now make this mission plausible. If deployed these systems could be diverted for power beaming propulsion applications. Propulsion options include a thermal system with an Isp near 1000 sec., a new optical coupled thermal system with an Isp over 2000 sec. photovoltaic-ion propulsion systems with an Isp near 3000 sec., and a possible new optical coupled thermal system with an Isp over 2000 sec.

  7. A Technology Pathway for Airbreathing, Combined-Cycle, Horizontal Space Launch Through SR-71 Based Trajectory Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kloesel, Kurt J.; Ratnayake, Nalin A.; Clark, Casie M.

    2011-01-01

    Access to space is in the early stages of commercialization. Private enterprises, mainly under direct or indirect subsidy by the government, have been making headway into the LEO launch systems infrastructure, of small-weight-class payloads of approximately 1000 lbs. These moderate gains have emboldened the launch industry and they are poised to move into the middle-weight class (roughly 5000 lbs). These commercially successful systems are based on relatively straightforward LOX-RP, two-stage, bi-propellant rocket technology developed by the government 40 years ago, accompanied by many technology improvements. In this paper we examine a known generic LOX-RP system with the focus on the booster stage (1st stage). The booster stage is then compared to modeled Rocket-Based and Turbine-Based Combined Cycle booster stages. The air-breathing propulsion stages are based on/or extrapolated from known performance parameters of ground tested RBCC (the Marquardt Ejector Ramjet) and TBCC (the SR-71/J-58 engine) data. Validated engine models using GECAT and SCCREAM are coupled with trajectory optimization and analysis in POST-II to explore viable launch scenarios using hypothetical aerospaceplane platform obeying the aerodynamic model of the SR-71. Finally, and assessment is made of the requisite research technology advances necessary for successful commercial and government adoption of combined-cycle engine systems for space access.

  8. Experiments on hypersonic ramjet propulsion cycles using a ram accelerator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chew, G.; Knowlen, C.; Burnham, E. A.; Hertzberg, A.; Bruckner, A. P.

    1991-01-01

    Work on hypersonic propulsion research using a ram accelerator is presented. Several different ram accelerator propulsive cycles have been experimentally demonstrated over the Mach number range of 3 to 8.5. The subsonic, thermally choked combustion mode has accelerated projectiles to near the Chapman-Jouguet (C-J) detonation velocity within many different propellant mixtures. In the transdetonative velocity regime (85 to 115 percent of C-J speed), projectiles have established a propulsive cycle which allows them to transition smoothly from subdetonative to superdetonative velocities. Luminosity data indicate that the combustion process moves forward onto the projectile body as it approaches the C-J speed. In the superdetonative velocity range, the projectiles accelerate while always traveling faster than the C-J velocity. Ram accelerator projectiles operating continuously through these velocity regimes generate distinctive hypersonic phenomena which can be studied very effectively in the laboratory. These results would be very useful for validating sophisticated CFD computer codes and in collecting engineering data for potential airbreathing hypersonic propulsive systems.

  9. Rapid near-optimal trajectory generation and guidance law development for single-stage-to-orbit airbreathing vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calise, A. J.; Flandro, G. A.; Corban, J. E.

    1990-01-01

    General problems associated with on-board trajectory optimization, propulsion system cycle selection, and with the synthesis of guidance laws were addressed for an ascent to low-earth-orbit of an air-breathing single-stage-to-orbit vehicle. The NASA Generic Hypersonic Aerodynamic Model Example and the Langley Accelerator aerodynamic sets were acquired and implemented. Work related to the development of purely analytic aerodynamic models was also performed at a low level. A generic model of a multi-mode propulsion system was developed that includes turbojet, ramjet, scramjet, and rocket engine cycles. Provisions were made in the dynamic model for a component of thrust normal to the flight path. Computational results, which characterize the nonlinear sensitivity of scramjet performance to changes in vehicle angle of attack, were obtained and incorporated into the engine model. Additional trajectory constraints were introduced: maximum dynamic pressure; maximum aerodynamic heating rate per unit area; angle of attack and lift limits; and limits on acceleration both along and normal to the flight path. The remainder of the effort focused on required modifications to a previously derived algorithm when the model complexity cited above was added. In particular, analytic switching conditions were derived which, under appropriate assumptions, govern optimal transition from one propulsion mode to another for two cases: the case in which engine cycle operations can overlap, and the case in which engine cycle operations are mutually exclusive. The resulting guidance algorithm was implemented in software and exercised extensively. It was found that the approximations associated with the assumed time scale separation employed in this work are reasonable except over the Mach range from roughly 5 to 8. This phenomenon is due to the very large thrust capability of scramjets in this Mach regime when sized to meet the requirement for ascent to orbit. By accounting for flight path

  10. Propulsion Flight-Test Fixture

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Palumbo, Nate; Vachon, M. Jake; Richwine, Dave; Moes, Tim; Creech, Gray

    2003-01-01

    NASA Dryden Flight Research Center s new Propulsion Flight Test Fixture (PFTF), designed in house, is an airborne engine-testing facility that enables engineers to gather flight data on small experimental engines. Without the PFTF, it would be necessary to obtain such data from traditional wind tunnels, ground test stands, or laboratory test rigs. Traditionally, flight testing is reserved for the last phase of engine development. Generally, engines that embody new propulsion concepts are not put into flight environments until their designs are mature: in such cases, either vehicles are designed around the engines or else the engines are mounted in or on missiles. However, a captive carry capability of the PFTF makes it possible to test engines that feature air-breathing designs (for example, designs based on the rocket-based combined cycle) economically in subscale experiments. The discovery of unknowns made evident through flight tests provides valuable information to engine designers early in development, before key design decisions are made, thereby potentially affording large benefits in the long term. This is especially true in the transonic region of flight (from mach 0.9 to around 1.2), where it can be difficult to obtain data from wind tunnels and computational fluid dynamics. In January 2002, flight-envelope expansion to verify the design and capabilities of the PFTF was completed. The PFTF was flown on a specially equipped supersonic F-15B research testbed airplane, mounted on the airplane at a center-line attachment fixture, as shown in Figure 1. NASA s F-15B testbed has been used for several years as a flight-research platform. Equipped with extensive research air-data, video, and other instrumentation systems, the airplane carries externally mounted test articles. Traditionally, the majority of test articles flown have been mounted at the centerline tank-attachment fixture, which is a hard-point (essentially, a standardized weapon-mounting fixture

  11. Second-stage trajectories of air-breathing space planes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staufenbiel, R. W.

    1990-12-01

    Attention throughout the world has turned to the benefits that can be gained in space transportation by combining the features of aircraft and rockets. In the rocket-driven phase or stage, which follows the nearly horizontal air-breathing flight, a considerable change in the flight trajectory, a pullup maneuver, is necessary shortly before or after igniting the rocket engines. The change puts a burden on the first or the second stage and thereby reduces the payload. In this paper an optimal strategy for the rocket-propelled flight phase is developed that gives the smallest penalties on longitudinal acceleration and, therefore, on burnout mass. The strategy leads to a splitting of lift and thrust component normal to the flight direction. Two other control strategies are compared with the optimal procedure. Using a generic modeling of aerodynamic characteristics, the equations of motion are solved to assess the influence of initial conditions and of trajectory parameters on the burnout mass. Results of the study show the essential influence of the initial values of flight-path angle and Mach number on the rocket-propelled flight phase. Initial flight-path angle should not be lower than 5 deg. If a reasonable amount of payload and propellant for in-orbit operation should be carried, the dry-mass ratio of the second stage must come down to the range of 15 to 20, depending on the separation Mach number (5 to 6.5).

  12. OTV Propulsion Issues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    The statistical technology needs of aero-assist maneuvering, propulsion, and usage of cryogenic fluids were presented. Industry panels discussed the servicing of reusable space based vehicles and propulsion-vehicle interation.

  13. European auxiliary propulsion, 1972

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holcomb, L. B.

    1972-01-01

    The chemical and electric auxiliary propulsion technology of the United Kingdom, France, and West Germany is discussed in detail, and the propulsion technology achievements of Italy, India, Japan, and Russia are reviewed. A comparison is presented of Shell 405 catalyst and a European spontaneous hydrazine catalyst called CNESRO I. Finally, conclusions are drawn regarding future trends in European auxiliary propulsion technology development.

  14. Enhanced Control Effector Designs for Airbreathing Transatmospheric Vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cockrell, Charles E.; McMinn, John D.

    1997-01-01

    A study was conducted to evaluate the potential effectiveness of a moveable cowl-trailing-edge design for airbreathing hypersonic single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) configurations, which can be extended or deflected from the nominal position in order to provide additional pitching moment capability. This additional pitching moment capability may reduce the necessary deflection angle from conventional control surfaces and the associated trim drag penalty. Calculations for a generic SSTO configuration with baseline and modified cowl trailing edge geometries were performed at Mach 6 and 10 initially with an engineering analysis code in order to examine several design parametrics. In order to more accurately model geometries and flow physics, 2-D viscous computational fluid dynamics (CFD) predictions were obtained. FInally, a limited set of 3D CFD predictions were obtained at Mach 6 in order to show the effects of modeling 3D flow fields as well as the full 3D vehicle geometry. Comparisons of aftbody surface pressures and force and moment predictions show differences between initial predictions and 2-D CFD solutions due to geometry modeling and calculation method differences. The 3-D CFD predictions confirm the trends observed in the 2-D solutions and provide additional information on 3D effects. These analyses shows that cowl-trailing-edge extensions were effective in providing additional (nose-down) pitching moment increments as well as increased thrust compared to the baseline geometry. These effects reduce the control surface deflection angle required to trim the vehicle and the associated trim drag. Cowl-trailingedge deflections were not as effective, generating more nose-up pitching moment and decreased thrust compared to non-deflected cases.

  15. Advanced instrumentation for next-generation aerospace propulsion control systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barkhoudarian, S.; Cross, G. S.; Lorenzo, Carl F.

    1993-01-01

    New control concepts for the next generation of advanced air-breathing and rocket engines and hypersonic combined-cycle propulsion systems are analyzed. The analysis provides a database on the instrumentation technologies for advanced control systems and cross matches the available technologies for each type of engine to the control needs and applications of the other two types of engines. Measurement technologies that are considered to be ready for implementation include optical surface temperature sensors, an isotope wear detector, a brushless torquemeter, a fiberoptic deflectometer, an optical absorption leak detector, the nonintrusive speed sensor, and an ultrasonic triducer. It is concluded that all 30 advanced instrumentation technologies considered can be recommended for further development to meet need of the next generation of jet-, rocket-, and hypersonic-engine control systems.

  16. Advanced instrumentation for next-generation aerospace propulsion control systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barkhoudarian, S.; Cross, G. S.; Lorenzo, Carl F.

    1993-06-01

    New control concepts for the next generation of advanced air-breathing and rocket engines and hypersonic combined-cycle propulsion systems are analyzed. The analysis provides a database on the instrumentation technologies for advanced control systems and cross matches the available technologies for each type of engine to the control needs and applications of the other two types of engines. Measurement technologies that are considered to be ready for implementation include optical surface temperature sensors, an isotope wear detector, a brushless torquemeter, a fiberoptic deflectometer, an optical absorption leak detector, the nonintrusive speed sensor, and an ultrasonic triducer. It is concluded that all 30 advanced instrumentation technologies considered can be recommended for further development to meet need of the next generation of jet-, rocket-, and hypersonic-engine control systems.

  17. Robust control of hypersonic vehicles considering propulsive and aeroelastic effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buschek, Harald; Calise, Anthony J.

    1993-01-01

    The influence of propulsion system variations and elastic fuselage behavior on the flight control system of an airbreathing hypersonic vehicle is investigated. Thrust vector magnitude and direction changes due to angle of attack variations affect the pitching moment. Low structural vibration frequencies may occur close to the rigid body modes influencing the angle of attack and lead to possible cross coupling. These effects are modeled as uncertainties in the context of a robust control study of a hypersonic vehicle model accelerating through Mach 8 using H-infinity and mu synthesis techniques. Various levels of uncertainty are introduced into the system. Both individual and simultaneous appearance of uncertainty are considered. The results indicate that the chosen design technique is suitable for this kind of problem provided that a fairly good knowledge of the effects mentioned above is available. The order of the designed controller is reduced but robust performance is lost which shows the need for fixed order design techniques.

  18. Developing Conceptual Hypersonic Airbreathing Engines Using Design of Experiments Methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferlemann, Shelly M.; Robinson, Jeffrey S.; Martin, John G.; Leonard, Charles P.; Taylor, Lawrence W.; Kamhawi, Hilmi

    2000-01-01

    Designing a hypersonic vehicle is a complicated process due to the multi-disciplinary synergy that is required. The greatest challenge involves propulsion-airframe integration. In the past, a two-dimensional flowpath was generated based on the engine performance required for a proposed mission. A three-dimensional CAD geometry was produced from the two-dimensional flowpath for aerodynamic analysis, structural design, and packaging. The aerodynamics, engine performance, and mass properties arc inputs to the vehicle performance tool to determine if the mission goals were met. If the mission goals were not met, then a flowpath and vehicle redesign would begin. This design process might have to be performed several times to produce a "closed" vehicle. This paper will describe an attempt to design a hypersonic cruise vehicle propulsion flowpath using a Design of' Experiments method to reduce the resources necessary to produce a conceptual design with fewer iterations of the design cycle. These methods also allow for more flexible mission analysis and incorporation of additional design constraints at any point. A design system was developed using an object-based software package that would quickly generate each flowpath in the study given the values of the geometric independent variables. These flowpath geometries were put into a hypersonic propulsion code and the engine performance was generated. The propulsion results were loaded into statistical software to produce regression equations that were combined with an aerodynamic database to optimize the flowpath at the vehicle performance level. For this example, the design process was executed twice. The first pass was a cursory look at the independent variables selected to determine which variables are the most important and to test all of the inputs to the optimization process. The second cycle is a more in-depth study with more cases and higher order equations representing the design space.

  19. Identification of propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merrill, Walter; Guo, Ten-Huei; Duyar, Ahmet

    1991-01-01

    This paper presents a tutorial on the use of model identification techniques for the identification of propulsion system models. These models are important for control design, simulation, parameter estimation, and fault detection. Propulsion system identification is defined in the context of the classical description of identification as a four step process that is unique because of special considerations of data and error sources. Propulsion system models are described along with the dependence of system operation on the environment. Propulsion system simulation approaches are discussed as well as approaches to propulsion system identification with examples for both air breathing and rocket systems.

  20. Solar Thermal Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gerrish, Harold P., Jr.

    2003-01-01

    This paper presents viewgraphs on Solar Thermal Propulsion (STP). Some of the topics include: 1) Ways to use Solar Energy for Propulsion; 2) Solar (fusion) Energy; 3) Operation in Orbit; 4) Propulsion Concepts; 5) Critical Equations; 6) Power Efficiency; 7) Major STP Projects; 8) Types of STP Engines; 9) Solar Thermal Propulsion Direct Gain Assembly; 10) Specific Impulse; 11) Thrust; 12) Temperature Distribution; 13) Pressure Loss; 14) Transient Startup; 15) Axial Heat Input; 16) Direct Gain Engine Design; 17) Direct Gain Engine Fabrication; 18) Solar Thermal Propulsion Direct Gain Components; 19) Solar Thermal Test Facility; and 20) Checkout Results.

  1. Perspective of Launch Vehicle Size and Weight Based on Propulsion System Concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czysz, P. A.

    2002-01-01

    The interaction of the propulsion system concept, and its intrinsic oxidizer to fuel ratio, with the geometric concept of the flight vehicle are such that their final configurations are interdependent. From an all rocket, to a PDE to a combined cycle propulsion system the there is a family of propulsion system/vehicle geometry that yield the smallest lightest system. The interactions define a valid design space for each propulsion system/vehicle concepts that clearly points the parameter value for minimum size and weight. The process also identifies a development path that builds on the previous propulsion system hardware developments so that the next, new system utilizes the previous propulsion system in its entirety. This greatly reduces development risk and cost as the degraded performance system is the previously proven system. Using historical aircraft maintenance analyses, it can be shown that systems designed to operate as maintained systems, not reusable disposable systems, the operating costs can be reduced and the flight frequency increased. The analysis systematically and incrementally spans all rockets to airbreathing combined cycle systems that achieve Mach 18.

  2. Propulsion and Power Generation Capabilities of a Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) Fusion System for Future Military Aerospace Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Knecht, Sean D.; Mead, Franklin B.; Miley, George H.; Froning, David

    2006-01-20

    The objective of this study was to perform a parametric evaluation of the performance and interface characteristics of a dense plasma focus (DPF) fusion system in support of a USAF advanced military aerospace vehicle concept study. This vehicle is an aerospace plane that combines clean 'aneutronic' dense plasma focus (DPF) fusion power and propulsion technology, with advanced 'lifting body'-like airframe configurations utilizing air-breathing MHD propulsion and power technology within a reusable single-stage-to-orbit (SSTO) vehicle. The applied approach was to evaluate the fusion system details (geometry, power, T/W, system mass, etc.) of a baseline p-11B DPF propulsion device with Q = 3.0 and thruster efficiency, {eta}prop = 90% for a range of thrust, Isp and capacitor specific energy values. The baseline details were then kept constant and the values of Q and {eta}prop were varied to evaluate excess power generation for communication systems, pulsed-train plasmoid weapons, ultrahigh-power lasers, and gravity devices. Thrust values were varied between 100 kN and 1,000 kN with Isp of 1,500 s and 2,000 s, while capacitor specific energy was varied from 1 - 15 kJ/kg. Q was varied from 3.0 to 6.0, resulting in gigawatts of excess power. Thruster efficiency was varied from 0.9 to 1.0, resulting in hundreds of megawatts of excess power. Resulting system masses were on the order of 10's to 100's of metric tons with thrust-to-weight ratios ranging from 2.1 to 44.1, depending on capacitor specific energy. Such a high thrust/high Isp system with a high power generation capability would allow military versatility in sub-orbital space, as early as 2025, and beyond as early as 2050. This paper presents the results that coincide with a total system mass between 15 and 20 metric tons.

  3. Space Propulsion Technology Program Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Escher, William J. D.

    1991-01-01

    The topics presented are covered in viewgraph form. Focused program elements are: (1) transportation systems, which include earth-to-orbit propulsion, commercial vehicle propulsion, auxiliary propulsion, advanced cryogenic engines, cryogenic fluid systems, nuclear thermal propulsion, and nuclear electric propulsion; (2) space platforms, which include spacecraft on-board propulsion, and station keeping propulsion; and (3) technology flight experiments, which include cryogenic orbital N2 experiment (CONE), SEPS flight experiment, and cryogenic orbital H2 experiment (COHE).

  4. Analysis of a Nuclear Enhanced Airbreathing Rocket for Earth to Orbit Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, Robert B.; Landrum, D. Brian; Brown, Norman (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The proposed engine concept is the Nuclear Enhanced Airbreathing Rocket (NEAR). The NEAR concept uses a fission reactor to thermally heat a propellant in a rocket plenum. The rocket is shrouded, thus the exhaust mixes with ingested air to provide additional thermal energy through combustion. The combusted flow is then expanded through a nozzle to provide thrust.

  5. Space propulsion systems. Present performance limits and application and development trends

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buehler, R. D.; Lo, R. E.

    1981-01-01

    Typical spaceflight programs and their propulsion requirements as a comparison for possible propulsion systems are summarized. Chemical propulsion systems, solar, nuclear, or even laser propelled rockets with electrical or direct thermal fuel acceleration, nonrockets with air breathing devices and solar cells are considered. The chemical launch vehicles have similar technical characteristics and transportation costs. A possible improvement of payload by using air breathing lower stages is discussed. The electrical energy supply installations which give performance limits of electrical propulsion and the electrostatic ion propulsion systems are described. The development possibilities of thermal, magnetic, and electrostatic rocket engines and the state of development of the nuclear thermal rocket and propulsion concepts are addressed.

  6. Lasers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schewe, Phillip F.

    1981-01-01

    Examines the nature of laser light. Topics include: (1) production and characteristics of laser light; (2) nine types of lasers; (3) five laser techniques including holography; (4) laser spectroscopy; and (5) laser fusion and other applications. (SK)

  7. Expendable launch vehicle propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fuller, Paul N.

    1991-01-01

    The current status is reviewed of the U.S. Expendable Launch Vehicle (ELV) fleet, the international competition, and the propulsion technology of both domestic and foreign ELVs. The ELV propulsion technology areas where research, development, and demonstration are most needed are identified. These propulsion technology recommendations are based on the work performed by the Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC), an industry panel established by the Dept. of Transportation.

  8. NASA electric propulsion program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hudson, W. R.; Finke, R. C.

    1976-01-01

    Major portions of the NASA electric propulsion technology program have attained the level of maturity required to achieve near-term technology readiness for flight missions for primary and auxiliary propulsion application. Advanced electric propulsion program elements addressing less immediate requirements are in more exploratory stages. This paper will discuss the NASA electric propulsion technology program including - planetary and earth orbit raising applications, attitude control and stationkeeping of geosynchronous satellites, and the research support program. Objectives, requirements, and hardware status are presented for each program.

  9. Aerosciences, Aero-Propulsion and Flight Mechanics Technology Development for NASA's Next Generation Launch Technology Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cockrell, Charles E., Jr.

    2003-01-01

    The Next Generation Launch Technology (NGLT) program, Vehicle Systems Research and Technology (VSR&T) project is pursuing technology advancements in aerothermodynamics, aeropropulsion and flight mechanics to enable development of future reusable launch vehicle (RLV) systems. The current design trade space includes rocket-propelled, hypersonic airbreathing and hybrid systems in two-stage and single-stage configurations. Aerothermodynamics technologies include experimental and computational databases to evaluate stage separation of two-stage vehicles as well as computational and trajectory simulation tools for this problem. Additionally, advancements in high-fidelity computational tools and measurement techniques are being pursued along with the study of flow physics phenomena, such as boundary-layer transition. Aero-propulsion technology development includes scramjet flowpath development and integration, with a current emphasis on hypervelocity (Mach 10 and above) operation, as well as the study of aero-propulsive interactions and the impact on overall vehicle performance. Flight mechanics technology development is focused on advanced guidance, navigation and control (GN&C) algorithms and adaptive flight control systems for both rocket-propelled and airbreathing vehicles.

  10. Advanced Propulsion Concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, J. R.

    1997-01-01

    Current interest in advanced propulsion within NASA and research activities in advanced propulsion concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are reviewed. The concepts, which include high power plasma thrusters such as lithuim-fueled Lorentz-Force-Accelerators, MEMS-scale propulsion systems, in-situ propellant utilization techniques, fusion propulsion systems and methods of using antimatter, offer the potential for either significantly enhancing space transportation capability as compared with that of traditional chemical propulsion, or enabling ambitious new missions.

  11. Pulsed Fission Propulsion Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    In the 1960's U.S. Government laboratories, under Project Orion, investigated a pulsed nuclear fission propulsion system. Small nuclear pulse units would be sequentially discharged from the aft end of the vehicle. A blast shield and shock absorber system would protect the crew and convert the shock loads into a continuous propulsive force.

  12. Nuclear thermal propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bennett, Gary L.

    1991-01-01

    This document is presented in viewgraph form, and the topics covered include the following: (1) the direct fission-thermal propulsion process; (2) mission applications of direct fission-thermal propulsion; (3) nuclear engines for rocket vehicles; (4) manned mars landers; and (5) particle bed reactor design.

  13. Advanced Chemical Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alexander, Leslie, Jr.

    2006-01-01

    Advanced Chemical Propulsion (ACP) provides near-term incremental improvements in propulsion system performance and/or cost. It is an evolutionary approach to technology development that produces useful products along the way to meet increasingly more demanding mission requirements while focusing on improving payload mass fraction to yield greater science capability. Current activities are focused on two areas: chemical propulsion component, subsystem, and manufacturing technologies that offer measurable system level benefits; and the evaluation of high-energy storable propellants with enhanced performance for in-space application. To prioritize candidate propulsion technology alternatives, a variety of propulsion/mission analyses and trades have been conducted for SMD missions to yield sufficient data for investment planning. They include: the Advanced Chemical Propulsion Assessment; an Advanced Chemical Propulsion System Model; a LOx-LH2 small pumps conceptual design; a space storables propellant study; a spacecraft cryogenic propulsion study; an advanced pressurization and mixture ratio control study; and a pump-fed vs. pressure-fed study.

  14. Electric Propulsion Apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patterson, Michael J. (Inventor)

    2013-01-01

    An electric propulsion machine includes an ion thruster having an annular discharge chamber housing an anode having a large surface area. The ion thruster includes flat annular ion optics with a small span to gap ratio. Optionally, a second electric propulsion thruster may be disposed in a cylindrical space disposed within an interior of the annulus.

  15. ESA Spacecraft Propulsion Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saccoccia, G.

    2004-10-01

    ESA is currently involved in several activities related to spacecraft chemical and electric propulsion, from the basic research and development of conventional and new concepts to the manufacturing, AIV and flight control of the propulsion subsystems of several European satellites. In the commercial application field, the strong competition among satellite manufacturers is a major driver for advancements in the area of propulsion, where increasing better performance together with low prices are required. Furthermore, new scientific and Earth observation missions dictate new challenging requirements for propulsion systems and components based on advanced technologies. For all these reasons, the technology area of spacecraft propulsion is in strong evolution and this paper presents an overview of the current European programmes and initiatives in this technology field. Specific attention is devoted in the paper to the performance and flight experience of spacecraft currently in orbit or ready to be launched.

  16. Sensor failure and multivariable control for airbreathing propulsion systems. Ph.D. Thesis - Dec. 1979 Final Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Behbehani, K.

    1980-01-01

    A new sensor/actuator failure analysis technique for turbofan jet engines was developed. Three phases of failure analysis, namely detection, isolation, and accommodation are considered. Failure detection and isolation techniques are developed by utilizing the concept of Generalized Likelihood Ratio (GLR) tests. These techniques are applicable to both time varying and time invariant systems. Three GLR detectors are developed for: (1) hard-over sensor failure; (2) hard-over actuator failure; and (3) brief disturbances in the actuators. The probability distribution of the GLR detectors and the detectability of sensor/actuator failures are established. Failure type is determined by the maximum of the GLR detectors. Failure accommodation is accomplished by extending the Multivariable Nyquest Array (MNA) control design techniques to nonsquare system designs. The performance and effectiveness of the failure analysis technique are studied by applying the technique to a turbofan jet engine, namely the Quiet Clean Short Haul Experimental Engine (QCSEE). Single and multiple sensor/actuator failures in the QCSEE are simulated and analyzed and the effects of model degradation are studied.

  17. Beamed energy for space craft propulsion - Conceptual status and development potential

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sercel, Joel C.; Frisbee, Robert H.

    1987-01-01

    This paper outlines the results of a brief study that sought to identify and characterize beamed energy spacecraft propulsion concepts that may have positive impact on the economics of space industrialization. It is argued that the technology of beamed energy propulsion systems may significantly improve the prospects for near-term colonization of outer space. It is tentatively concluded that, for space industrialization purposes, the most attractive near-term beamed energy propulsion systems are based on microwave technology. This conclusion is reached based on consideration of the common features that exist between beamed microwave propulsion and the Solar Power Satellite (SPS) concept. Laser power beaming also continues to be an attractive option for spacecraft propulsion due to the reduced diffraction-induced beam spread afforded by laser radiation wavelengths. The conceptual status and development potential of a variety of beamed energy propulsion concepts are presented. Several alternative space transportation system concepts based on beamed energy propulsion are described.

  18. Large eddy simulation modelling of combustion for propulsion applications.

    PubMed

    Fureby, C

    2009-07-28

    Predictive modelling of turbulent combustion is important for the development of air-breathing engines, internal combustion engines, furnaces and for power generation. Significant advances in modelling non-reactive turbulent flows are now possible with the development of large eddy simulation (LES), in which the large energetic scales of the flow are resolved on the grid while modelling the effects of the small scales. Here, we discuss the use of combustion LES in predictive modelling of propulsion applications such as gas turbine, ramjet and scramjet engines. The LES models used are described in some detail and are validated against laboratory data-of which results from two cases are presented. These validated LES models are then applied to an annular multi-burner gas turbine combustor and a simplified scramjet combustor, for which some additional experimental data are available. For these cases, good agreement with the available reference data is obtained, and the LES predictions are used to elucidate the flow physics in such devices to further enhance our knowledge of these propulsion systems. Particular attention is focused on the influence of the combustion chemistry, turbulence-chemistry interaction, self-ignition, flame holding burner-to-burner interactions and combustion oscillations. PMID:19531515

  19. Distributed Propulsion Vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Hyun Dae

    2010-01-01

    Since the introduction of large jet-powered transport aircraft, the majority of these vehicles have been designed by placing thrust-generating engines either under the wings or on the fuselage to minimize aerodynamic interactions on the vehicle operation. However, advances in computational and experimental tools along with new technologies in materials, structures, and aircraft controls, etc. are enabling a high degree of integration of the airframe and propulsion system in aircraft design. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has been investigating a number of revolutionary distributed propulsion vehicle concepts to increase aircraft performance. The concept of distributed propulsion is to fully integrate a propulsion system within an airframe such that the aircraft takes full synergistic benefits of coupling of airframe aerodynamics and the propulsion thrust stream by distributing thrust using many propulsors on the airframe. Some of the concepts are based on the use of distributed jet flaps, distributed small multiple engines, gas-driven multi-fans, mechanically driven multifans, cross-flow fans, and electric fans driven by turboelectric generators. This paper describes some early concepts of the distributed propulsion vehicles and the current turboelectric distributed propulsion (TeDP) vehicle concepts being studied under the NASA s Subsonic Fixed Wing (SFW) Project to drastically reduce aircraft-related fuel burn, emissions, and noise by the year 2030 to 2035.

  20. Advanced Propulsion Research Interest in Materials for Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cole, John

    2003-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation provides an overview of material science and technology in the area of propulsion energetics. The authors note that conventional propulsion systems are near peak performance and further refinements in manufacturing, engineering design and materials will only provide incremental increases in performance. Energetic propulsion technologies could potential solve the problems of energy storage density and energy-to-thrust conversion efficiency. Topics considered include: the limits of thermal propulsion systems, the need for energetic propulsion research, emerging energetic propulsion technologies, materials research needed for advanced propulsion, and potential research opportunities.

  1. Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Borowski, S. K.; George, J. A.; Kim, T.; Emrich, W. J.; Hickman, R. R.; Broadway, J. W.; Gerrish, H. P.; Adams, R. B.

    2012-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced NEP.

  2. Advanced subsonic transport propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nored, D. L.; Ciepluch, C. C.; Chamberlain, R.; Meleason, E. T.; Kraft, G. A.

    1981-01-01

    A brief review of the current NASA Energy Efficient Engine (E(3)) Project is presented. Included in this review are the factors that influenced the design of these turbofan engines and the advanced technology incorporated in them to reduce fuel consumption and improve environmental characteristics. In addition, factors such as the continuing spiral in fuel cost, that could influence future aircraft propulsion systems beyond those represented by the E(3) engines, are also discussed. Advanced technologies that will address these influencing factors and provide viable future propulsion systems are described. The potential importance of other propulsion system types, such as geared fans and turboshaft engines, is presented.

  3. Prospective of Photon Propulsion for Interstellar Flight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bae, Young K.

    Mastering photon propulsion is proposed to be the key to overcoming the limit of the current propulsion technology based on conventional rocketry and potentially opening a new space era. A perspective on photon propulsion is presented here to elucidate that interstellar manned roundtrip flight could be achievable in a century within a frame of exiting scientific principles, once the required existing technologies are further developed. It is shown that the developmental pathway towards the interstellar flight demands not only technological breakthroughs, but consistent long-term world-scale economic interest and investment. Such interest and investment will result from positive financial returns from routine interstellar commutes that can transport highly valuable commodities in a profitable manner. The Photonic Railway, a permanent energy-efficient transportation structure based on the Beamed-Laser Propulsion (BLP) by Forward and the Photonic Laser Thruster (PLT) by the author, is proposed to enable such routine interstellar commutes via Spacetrains. A four-phased evolutionary developmental pathway towards the Interstellar Photonic Railway is proposed. Each phase poses evolutionary, yet daunting, technological and financial challenges that need to be overcome within each time frame of 20 _ 30 years, and is projected to generate multitudes of applications that would lead to sustainable reinvestment into its development. If successfully developed, the Photonic Railway would bring about a quantum leap in the human economic and social interests in space from explorations to terraforming, mining, colonization, and permanent habitation in exoplanets.

  4. Advanced beamed-energy and field propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myrabo, L. N.

    1983-01-01

    Specific phenomena which might lead to major advances in payload, range and terminal velocity of very advanced vehicle propulsion are studied. The effort focuses heavily on advanced propulsion spinoffs enabled by current government-funded investigations in directed-energy technology: i.e., laser, microwave, and relativistic charged particle beams. Futuristic (post-year 2000) beamed-energy propulsion concepts which indicate exceptional promise are identified and analytically investigated. The concepts must be sufficiently developed to permit technical understanding of the physical processes involved, assessment of the enabling technologies, and evaluation of their merits over conventional systems. Propulsion concepts that can be used for manned and/or unmanned missions for purposes of solar system exploration, planetary landing, suborbital flight, transport to orbit, and escape are presented. Speculations are made on the chronology of milestones in beamed-energy propulsion development, such as in systems applications of defense, satellite orbit-raising, global aerospace transportation, and manned interplanetary carriers.

  5. Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP)

    NASA Video Gallery

    NASA's history with nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) technology goes back to the earliest days of the Agency. The Manned Lunar Rover Vehicle and the Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Applications p...

  6. Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP)

    NASA Video Gallery

    Future Human Exploration requires high power solar electric propulsion vehicles to move cargo and humans beyond Low Earth Orbit, which requires large light weight arrays, high power processing, and...

  7. Flagellar propulsion near walls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Arthur; Lauga, Eric

    2010-11-01

    Confinement and wall effects are known to affect the kinematics and propulsive characteristics of swimming microorganisms. When a solid body is dragged through a viscous fluid at constant velocity, the presence of a wall increases fluid drag, and thus the net force required to maintain speed has to increase. In contrast, recent optical trapping experiments have revealed that the propulsive force generated by human spermatozoa is decreased by the presence of boundaries. Here we use simple models to analytically elucidate the propulsive effects of a solid boundary on passively actuated filaments and model eukaryotic flagella. We show that in some cases, the increase in fluid friction induced by the wall can lead to a change in the waveform expressed by the flagella which results in a decrease of their propulsive force near a no-slip wall.

  8. Advanced propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frisbee, Robert H.

    1991-01-01

    A variety of Advanced Propulsion Concepts (APC) is discussed. The focus is on those concepts that are sufficiently near-term that they could be developed for the Space Exploration Initiative. High-power (multi-megawatt) electric propulsion, solar sails, tethers, and extraterrestrial resource utilization concepts are discussed. A summary of these concepts and some general conclusions on their technology development needs are presented.

  9. Electric propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Finke, R. C.

    1980-01-01

    The advanced electric propulsion program is directed towards lowering the specific impulse and increasing the thrust per unit of ion thruster systems. In addition, electrothermal and electromagnetic propulsion technologies are being developed to attempt to fill the gap between the conventional ion thruster and chemical rocket systems. Most of these new concepts are exagenous and are represented by rail accelerators, ablative Teflon thrusters, MPD arcs, Free Radicals, etc. Endogenous systems such as metallic hydrogen offer great promise and are also being pursued.

  10. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-ft diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. This image, taken during the test, depicts the light being concentrated into the focal point inside the vacuum chamber. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  11. Fusion for Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. Francis; Schmidt, George R.; Santarius, John F.; Turchi, Peter J.; Siemon, Richard E.; Rodgers, Stephen L. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    The need for fusion propulsion for interplanetary flights is discussed. For a propulsion system, there are three important system attributes: (1) The absolute amount of energy available, (2) the propellant exhaust velocity, and (3) the jet power per unit mass of the propulsion system (specific power). For efficient and affordable human exploration of the solar system, propellant exhaust velocity in excess of 100 km/s and specific power in excess of 10 kW/kg are required. Chemical combustion obviously cannot meet the requirement in propellant exhaust velocity. Nuclear fission processes typically result in producing energy in the form of heat that needs to be manipulated at temperatures limited by materials to about 2,800 K. Using the fission energy to heat a low atomic weight propellant produces propellant velocity of the order of 10 kinds. Alternatively the fission energy can be converted into electricity that is used to accelerate particles to high exhaust velocity. However, the necessary power conversion and conditioning equipment greatly increases the mass of the propulsion system. Fundamental considerations in waste heat rejection and power conditioning in a fission electric propulsion system place a limit on its jet specific power to the order of about 0.2 kW/kg. If fusion can be developed for propulsion, it appears to have the best of all worlds - it can provide the largest absolute amount of energy, the propellant exhaust velocity (> 100 km/s), and the high specific jet power (> 10 kW/kg). An intermediate step towards fusion propulsion might be a bimodal system in which a fission reactor is used to provide some of the energy to drive a fusion propulsion unit. There are similarities as well as differences between applying fusion to propulsion and to terrestrial electrical power generation. The similarities are the underlying plasma and fusion physics, the enabling component technologies, the computational and the diagnostics capabilities. These physics and

  12. Gravitational Wave Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fontana, Giorgio

    2005-02-01

    There is only one experimental proof that gravitational waves exist. With such a limitation, it may seem premature to suggest the possibility that gravitational waves can became a preferred space propulsion technique. The present understanding of the problem indicates that this is not the case. The emission of gravitational waves from astrophysical sources has been confirmed by observation, the respective detection at large distance from the source is difficult and actually we have no confirmation of a successful detection. Therefore the required preliminary discovery has been already made. This opinion is enforced by many different proposals for building the required powerful gravitational wave generators that have recently appeared in the literature and discussed at conferences. It is no longer reasonable to wait for additional confirmation of the existence of gravitational waves to start a program for building generators and testing their possible application to space travel. A vast literature shows that gravitational waves can be employed for space propulsion. Gravitational wave rockets have been proposed, non-linearity of Einstein equations allows the conversion of gravitational waves to a static gravitational field and ``artificial gravity assist'' may become a new way of travelling in space-time. Different approaches to gravitational wave propulsion are reviewed and compared. Gravitational wave propulsion is also compared to traditional rocket propulsion and an undeniable advantage can be demonstrated in terms of efficiency and performance. Testing the predictions will require gravitational wave generators with high power and wavelength short enough for producing high energy densities. Detectors designed for the specific application must be developed, taking into account that non-linearity effects are expected. The study and development of Gravitational wave propulsion is a very challenging endeavor, involving the most complex theories, sophisticated

  13. Propulsion IVHM Technology Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chicatelli, Amy K.; Maul, William A.; Fulton, Christopher E.

    2006-01-01

    The Propulsion IVHM Technology Experiment (PITEX) successfully demonstrated real-time fault detection and isolation of a virtual reusable launch vehicle (RLV) main propulsion system (MPS). Specifically, the PITEX research project developed and applied a model-based diagnostic system for the MPS of the X-34 RLV, a space-launch technology demonstrator. The demonstration was simulation-based using detailed models of the propulsion subsystem to generate nominal and failure scenarios during captive carry, which is the most safety-critical portion of the X-34 flight. Since no system-level testing of the X-34 Main Propulsion System (MPS) was performed, these simulated data were used to verify and validate the software system. Advanced diagnostic and signal processing algorithms were developed and tested in real time on flight-like hardware. In an attempt to expose potential performance problems, the PITEX diagnostic system was subjected to numerous realistic effects in the simulated data including noise, sensor resolution, command/valve talkback information, and nominal build variations. In all cases, the PITEX system performed as required. The research demonstrated potential benefits of model-based diagnostics, defined performance metrics required to evaluate the diagnostic system, and studied the impact of real-world challenges encountered when monitoring propulsion subsystems.

  14. Efficiency of fish propulsion.

    PubMed

    Maertens, A P; Triantafyllou, M S; Yue, D K P

    2015-07-30

    The system efficiency of a self-propelled flexible body is ill-defined, hence we introduce the concept of quasi-propulsive efficiency, defined as the ratio of the power needed to tow a body in rigid-straight condition over the power it requires for self-propulsion, both measured for the same speed. Through examples we show that the quasi-propulsive efficiency is a rational non-dimensional metric of the propulsive fitness of fish and fish-like mechanisms, consistent with the goal to minimize fuel consumption under size and velocity constraints. We perform two-dimensional viscous simulations and apply the concept of quasi-propulsive efficiency to illustrate and discuss the efficiency of two-dimensional undulating foils employing first carangiform and then anguilliform kinematics. We show that low efficiency may be due to adverse body-propulsor hydrodynamic interactions, which cannot be accounted for by an increase in friction drag, as done previously, since at the Reynolds number Re = 5 000 considered in the simulations, pressure is a major contributor to both thrust and drag.

  15. Nuclear concepts/propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Thomas J.

    1993-01-01

    Nuclear thermal and nuclear electric propulsion systems will enable and/or enhance important space exploration missions to the moon and Mars. Current efforts are addressing certain research areas, although NASA and DOE still have much work yet to do. Relative to chemical systems, nuclear thermal propulsion offers the potential of reduced vehicle weight, wider launch windows. and shorter transit times, even without aerobrakes. This would improve crew safety by reducing their exposure to cosmic radiation. Advanced materials and structures will be an important resource in responding to the challenges posed by safety and test facility requirements, environmental concerns, high temperature fuels and the high radiation, hot hydrogen environment within nuclear thermal propulsion systems. Nuclear electric propulsion (NEP) has its own distinct set of advantages relative to chemical systems. These include low resupply mass, the availability of large amounts of onboard electric power for other uses besides propulsion, improved launch windows, and the ability to share technology with surface power systems. Development efforts for NEP reactors will emphasize long life operation of compact designs. This will require designs that provide high fuel burnup and high temperature operation along with personnel and environmental safety.

  16. The NASA Advanced Propulsion Concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leifer, S. D.; Frisbee, R. H.; Brophy, J. R.

    1997-01-01

    Research activities in advanced propulsion concepts at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are reviewed. The concepts were selected for study because each offers the potential for either significantly enhancing space transportation capability or enabling bold, ambitious new missions.

  17. Electric Propulsion Applications and Impacts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Curran, Frank M.; Wickenheiser, Timothy J.

    1996-01-01

    Most space missions require on-board propulsion systems and these systems are often dominant spacecraft mass drivers. Presently, on-board systems account for more than half the injected mass for commercial communications systems and even greater mass fractions for ambitious planetary missions. Anticipated trends toward the use of both smaller spacecraft and launch vehicles will likely increase pressure on the performance of on-board propulsion systems. The acceptance of arcjet thrusters for operational use on commercial communications satellites ushered in a new era in on-board propulsion and exponential growth of electric propulsion across a broad spectrum of missions is anticipated. NASA recognizes the benefits of advanced propulsion and NASA's Office of Space Access and Technology supports an aggressive On-Board Propulsion program, including a strong electric propulsion element, to assure the availability of high performance propulsion systems to meet the goals of the ambitious missions envisioned in the next two decades. The program scope ranges from fundamental research for future generation systems through specific insertion efforts aimed at near term technology transfer. The On-Board propulsion program is committed to carrying technologies to levels required for customer acceptance and emphasizes direct interactions with the user community and the development of commercial sources. This paper provides a discussion of anticipated missions, propulsion functions, and electric propulsion impacts followed by an overview of the electric propulsion element of the NASA On-Board Propulsion program.

  18. Free radical propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hawkins, C. E.; Nakanishi, S.

    1981-01-01

    A free radical propulsion concept utilizing the recombination energy of dissociated low molecular weight gases to produce thrust was examined. The concept offered promise of a propulsion system operating at a theoretical impulse, with hydrogen, as high as 2200 seconds at high thrust to power ratio, thus filling the gas existing between chemical and electrostatic propulsion capabilities. Microwave energy used to dissociate a continuously flowing gas was transferred to the propellant via three body recombination for conversion to propellant kinetic energy. Power absorption by the microwave plasma discharge was in excess of 90 percent over a broad range of pressures. Gas temperatures inferred from gas dynamic equations showed much higher temperatures from microwave heating than from electrothermal heating. Spectroscopic analysis appeared to corroborate the inferred temperatures of one of the gases tested.

  19. Nuclear electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keaton, Paul W.; Tubb, David J.

    1986-01-01

    The feasibility is investigated of using nuclear electric propulsion (NEP) for slow freighter ships traveling from a 500 km low Earth orbit (LEO) to the Moon's orbit about the Earth, and on to Mars. NEP is also shown to be feasible for transporting people to Mars on long conjunction-class missions lasting about nine months one way, and on short sprint missions lasting four months one way. Generally, it was not attempted to optimize ion exhaust velocities, but rather suitable parameters to demonstrate NEP feasibility were chosen. Various combinations of missions are compared with chemical and nuclear thermal propulsion (NTR) systems. Typically, NEP and NTR can accomplish the same lifting task with similar mass in LEO. When compared to chemical propulsion, NEP was found to accomplish the same missions with 40% less mass in LEO. These findings are sufficiently encouraging as to merit further studies with optimum systems.

  20. Advanced Chemical Propulsion Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woodcock, Gordon; Byers, Dave; Alexander, Leslie A.; Krebsbach, Al

    2004-01-01

    A study was performed of advanced chemical propulsion technology application to space science (Code S) missions. The purpose was to begin the process of selecting chemical propulsion technology advancement activities that would provide greatest benefits to Code S missions. Several missions were selected from Code S planning data, and a range of advanced chemical propulsion options was analyzed to assess capabilities and benefits re these missions. Selected beneficial applications were found for higher-performing bipropellants, gelled propellants, and cryogenic propellants. Technology advancement recommendations included cryocoolers and small turbopump engines for cryogenic propellants; space storable propellants such as LOX-hydrazine; and advanced monopropellants. It was noted that fluorine-bearing oxidizers offer performance gains over more benign oxidizers. Potential benefits were observed for gelled propellants that could be allowed to freeze, then thawed for use.

  1. The NASA ASTP Combined-Cycle Propulsion Database Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hyde, Eric H.; Escher, Daric W.; Heck, Mary T.; Roddy, Jordan E.; Lyles, Garry (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) communicated its long-term R&D goals for aeronautics and space transportation technologies in its 1997-98 annual progress report (Reference 1). Under "Pillar 3, Goal 9" a 25-year-horizon set of objectives has been stated for the Generation 3 Reusable Launch Vehicle ("Gen 3 RLV") class of space transportation systems. An initiative referred to as "Spaceliner 100" is being conducted to identify technology roadmaps in support of these objectives. Responsibility for running "Spaceliner 100" technology development and demonstration activities have been assigned to NASA's agency-wide Advanced Space Transportation Program (ASTP) office located at the Marshall Space Flight Center. A key technology area in which advances will be required in order to meet these objectives is propulsion. In 1996, in order to expand their focus beyond "allrocket" propulsion systems and technologies (see Appendix A for further discussion), ASTP initiated technology development and demonstration work on combined-cycle airbreathing/rocket propulsion systems (ARTT Contracts NAS8-40890 through 40894). Combined-cycle propulsion (CCP) activities (see Appendix B for definitions) have been pursued in the U.S. for over four decades, resulting in a large documented knowledge base on this subject (see Reference 2). In the fall of 1999 the Combined-Cycle Propulsion Database (CCPD) project was established with the primary purpose of collecting and consolidating CCP related technical information in support of the ASTP's ongoing technology development and demonstration program. Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) was selected to perform the initial development of the Database under its existing support contract with MSFC (Contract NAS8-99060) because of the company's unique combination of capabilities in database development, information technology (IT) and CCP knowledge. The CCPD is summarized in the descriptive 2-page flyer appended

  2. Cubic PdNP-based air-breathing cathodes integrated in glucose hybrid biofuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faggion Junior, D.; Haddad, R.; Giroud, F.; Holzinger, M.; Maduro de Campos, C. E.; Acuña, J. J. S.; Domingos, J. B.; Cosnier, S.

    2016-05-01

    Cubic Pd nanoparticles (PdNPs) were synthesized using ascorbic acid as a reducing agent and were evaluated for the catalytic oxygen reduction reaction. PdNPs were confined with multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) dispersions to form black suspensions and these inks were dropcast onto glassy carbon electrodes. Different nanoparticle sizes were synthesized and investigated upon oxygen reduction capacities (onset potential and electrocatalytic current densities) under O2 saturated conditions at varying pH values. Strong evidence of O2 diffusion limitation was demonstrated. In order to overcome oxygen concentration and diffusion limitations in solution, we used a gas diffusion layer to create a PdNP-based air-breathing cathode, which delivered -1.5 mA cm-2 at 0.0 V with an onset potential of 0.4 V. This air-breathing cathode was combined with a specially designed phenanthrolinequinone/glucose dehydrogenase-based anode to form a complete glucose/O2 hybrid bio-fuel cell providing an open circuit voltage of 0.554 V and delivering a maximal power output of 184 +/- 21 μW cm-2 at 0.19 V and pH 7.0.Cubic Pd nanoparticles (PdNPs) were synthesized using ascorbic acid as a reducing agent and were evaluated for the catalytic oxygen reduction reaction. PdNPs were confined with multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) dispersions to form black suspensions and these inks were dropcast onto glassy carbon electrodes. Different nanoparticle sizes were synthesized and investigated upon oxygen reduction capacities (onset potential and electrocatalytic current densities) under O2 saturated conditions at varying pH values. Strong evidence of O2 diffusion limitation was demonstrated. In order to overcome oxygen concentration and diffusion limitations in solution, we used a gas diffusion layer to create a PdNP-based air-breathing cathode, which delivered -1.5 mA cm-2 at 0.0 V with an onset potential of 0.4 V. This air-breathing cathode was combined with a specially designed phenanthrolinequinone

  3. Hypersonic airbreathing missile concepts under study at NASA Langley Research Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, J. L.; Johnston, P. J.; Cubbage, J. M.; Dillon, J. L.; Richie, C. B.; Marcum, D. C., Jr.; Carlson, C. H.

    1982-01-01

    The design and performance of several tactical and strategic hypersonic airbreathing missile concepts under study at the NASA Langley Research Center are discussed from an evolutionary perspective. A mid- and chin inlet missile design, constrained to the Navy's vertical box launcher, was investigated; a performance comparison is presented that is favorable to the mid-inlet approach. Parasol wing, confined flow field, and spatula-like cruise missile configurations were examined with strategic applications in mind. The preliminary results are encouraging with respect to aerodynamic and volumetric efficiency and choice of engine integration schemes.

  4. Contrast sensitivity of air-breathing nonprofessional scuba divers at a depth of 40 meters.

    PubMed

    Schellart, N A

    1992-08-01

    Photopic contrast sensitivity of air-breathing scuba divers was measured with a translucent test pattern at depths up to 40 m. The pattern was composed of sine wave gratings with spatial frequency and contrast changing logarithmically. The spatial transfer characteristics were measured at various depths under controlled optical conditions in seawater and in fresh water. Analysis indicates that the visual contrast sensitivity, and therefore probably also acuity, of sport divers is not affected up to depths of 40 m. This holds under ideal as well as poor diving conditions.

  5. Performance optimization of an airbreathing launch vehicle by a sequential trajectory optimization and vehicle design scheme

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schoettle, U. M.; Hillesheimer, M.

    1991-08-01

    An iterative multistep procedure for performance optimization of launch vehicles is described, which is being developed to support trade-off and sensitivity studies. Two major steps involved in the automated technique are the optimum trajectory shaping employing approximate control models and the vehicle design. Both aspects are discussed in this paper. Simulation examples are presented, first to demonstrate the approach taken for flight path optimization; second, to verify the coupled trajectory and design optimization procedure; and finally, to assess the impact of different mission requirements on an airbreathing Saenger-type vehicle.

  6. A Review of Past Insights by Robert Forward and Current Advanced Propulsion Activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robertson, Tony; Norley, G. D.

    2003-01-01

    A review of various technologies discussed by Dr. Robert Forward is done as a tribute to Dr. Forward, and is based on selections from his writings. These speculations and predictions by Dr. Forward are used as a basis for discussing expected propulsion technology work over the next twenty years. Among the technologies to be discussed are antimatter propulsion, space elevators and tethers, and laser propulsion.

  7. Focused technology: Nuclear propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Thomas J.

    1991-01-01

    The topics presented are covered in viewgraph form and include: nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP), which challenges (1) high temperature fuel and materials, (2) hot hydrogen environment, (3) test facilities, (4) safety, (5) environmental impact compliance, and (6) concept development, and nuclear electric propulsion (NEP), which challenges (1) long operational lifetime, (2) high temperature reactors, turbines, and radiators, (3) high fuel burn-up reactor fuels, and designs, (4) efficient, high temperature power conditioning, (5) high efficiency, and long life thrusters, (6) safety, (7) environmental impact compliance, and (8) concept development.

  8. Space Transportation Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liou, Meng-Sing; Stewart, Mark E.; Suresh, Ambady; Owen, A. Karl

    2001-01-01

    This report outlines the Space Transportation Propulsion Systems for the NPSS (Numerical Propulsion System Simulation) program. Topics include: 1) a review of Engine/Inlet Coupling Work; 2) Background/Organization of Space Transportation Initiative; 3) Synergy between High Performance Computing and Communications Program (HPCCP) and Advanced Space Transportation Program (ASTP); 4) Status of Space Transportation Effort, including planned deliverables for FY01-FY06, FY00 accomplishments (HPCCP Funded) and FY01 Major Milestones (HPCCP and ASTP); and 5) a review current technical efforts, including a review of the Rocket-Based Combined-Cycle (RBCC), Scope of Work, RBCC Concept Aerodynamic Analysis and RBCC Concept Multidisciplinary Analysis.

  9. Propulsion controlled aircraft computer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cogan, Bruce R. (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    A low-cost, easily retrofit Propulsion Controlled Aircraft (PCA) system for use on a wide range of commercial and military aircraft consists of an propulsion controlled aircraft computer that reads in aircraft data including aircraft state, pilot commands and other related data, calculates aircraft throttle position for a given maneuver commanded by the pilot, and then displays both current and calculated throttle position on a cockpit display to show the pilot where to move throttles to achieve the commanded maneuver, or is automatically sent digitally to command the engines directly.

  10. Space transportation propulsion USSR launcher technology, 1990

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    Space transportation propulsion U.S.S.R. launcher technology is discussed. The following subject areas are covered: Energia background (launch vehicle summary, Soviet launcher family) and Energia propulsion characteristics (booster propulsion, core propulsion, and growth capability).

  11. Nuclear thermal propulsion program overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bennett, Gary L.

    1991-01-01

    Nuclear thermal propulsion program is described. The following subject areas are covered: lunar and Mars missions; national space policy; international cooperation in space exploration; propulsion technology; nuclear rocket program; and budgeting.

  12. The NASA Electric Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, James R.; Byers, David C.; King, David Q.

    1988-01-01

    The NASA OAST Propulsion, Power, and Energy Division supports an electric propulsion program aimed at providing benefits to a broad class of missions. Concepts which have the potential to enable or significantly benefit space exploration and exploitation are identified and advanced toward application in the near and far term. This paper summarizes recent program progress in mission/system analysis; in electrothermal, electrostatic, and electromagnetic propulsion technologies; and in propulsion/spacecraft integration.

  13. SPE propulsion electrolyzer for NASA's integrated propulsion test article

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    Hamilton Standard has delivered a 3000 PSI SPE Propulsion Electrolyzer Stack and Special Test Fixture to the NASA Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC) Integrated Propulsion Test Article (IPTA) program in June 1990, per contract NAS9-18030. This prototype unit demonstrates the feasibility of SPE-high pressure water electrolysis for future space applications such as Space Station propulsion and Lunar/Mars energy storage. The SPE-Propulsion Electrolyzer has met or exceeded all IPTA program goals. It continues to function as the primary hydrogen and oxygen source for the IPTA test bed at the NASA/JSC Propulsion and Power Division Thermochemical Test Branch.

  14. NASA Now: Propulsion

    NASA Video Gallery

    In this episode of NASA Now, you’ll visit NASA’s Spacecraft Propulsion Research Facility, called B-2, at NASA Plum Brook Station. You’ll meet Dr. Louis Povinelli and Brian Jones who explain w...

  15. Propulsion system noise reduction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Feiler, C. E.; Heidelberg, L. J.; Karchmer, A. M.; Lansing, D. L.; Miller, B. A.; Rice, E. J.

    1975-01-01

    The progress in propulsion system noise reduction is reviewed. The noise technology areas discussed include: fan noise; advances in suppression including conventional acoustic treatment, high Mach number inlets, and wing shielding; engine core noise; flap noise from both under-the-wing and over-the-wing powered-lift systems; supersonic jet noise suppression; and the NASA program in noise prediction.

  16. Solar Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    LaPointe, Michael

    2006-01-01

    The Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) technology area is tasked to develop near and mid-term SEP technology to improve or enable science mission capture while minimizing risk and cost to the end user. The solar electric propulsion investments are primarily driven by SMD cost-capped mission needs. The technology needs are determined partially through systems analysis tasks including the recent "Re-focus Studies" and "Standard Architecture Study." These systems analysis tasks transitioned the technology development to address the near term propulsion needs suitable for cost-capped open solicited missions such as Discovery and New Frontiers Class missions. Major SEP activities include NASA's Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT), implementing a Standard Architecture for NSTAR and NEXT EP systems, and developing a long life High Voltage Hall Accelerator (HiVHAC). Lower level investments include advanced feed system development and xenon recovery testing. Future plans include completion of ongoing ISP development activities and evaluating potential use of commercial electric propulsion systems for SMD applications. Examples of enhanced mission capability and technology readiness dates shall be discussed.

  17. Pulsed Fission Propulsion Concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    In the 1960's U.S. Government laboratories, under Project Orion, investigated a pulsed nuclear fission propulsion system. Small nuclear pulse units would be sequentially discharged from the aft end of the vehicle. A blast shield and shock absorber system would protect the crew and convert the shock loads into a continuous propusive force.

  18. Advanced cryo propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tabata, William K.

    1991-01-01

    The following topics are presented in viewgraph form: (1) advanced space engine (ASE) chronology; (2) an ASE description; (3) a single expander; (4) a dual expander; (5) split expander; (6) launch vehicle start; (7) space start; (8) chemical transfer propulsion; and (9) an advanced expander test bed.

  19. General Aviation Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1980-01-01

    Programs exploring and demonstrating new technologies in general aviation propulsion are considered. These programs are the quiet, clean, general aviation turbofan (QCGAT) program; the general aviation turbine engine (GATE) study program; the general aviation propeller technology program; and the advanced rotary, diesel, and reciprocating engine programs.

  20. Turboprop Propulsion Mechanic.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chanute AFB Technical Training Center, IL.

    This instructional package consists of a plan of instruction, glossary, and student handouts and exercises for use in training Air Force personnel to become turboprop propulsion mechanics. Addressed in the individual lessons of the course are the following: common hand tools, hardware, measuring devices, and safety wiring; aircraft and engine…

  1. Propulsion simulation for magnetically suspended wind tunnel models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joshi, Prakash B.; Beerman, Henry P.; Chen, James; Krech, Robert H.; Lintz, Andrew L.; Rosen, David I.

    1990-01-01

    The feasibility of simulating propulsion-induced aerodynamic effects on scaled aircraft models in wind tunnels employing Magnetic Suspension and Balance Systems. The investigation concerned itself with techniques of generating exhaust jets of appropriate characteristics. The objectives were to: (1) define thrust and mass flow requirements of jets; (2) evaluate techniques for generating propulsive gas within volume limitations imposed by magnetically-suspended models; (3) conduct simple diagnostic experiments for techniques involving new concepts; and (4) recommend experiments for demonstration of propulsion simulation techniques. Various techniques of generating exhaust jets of appropriate characteristics were evaluated on scaled aircraft models in wind tunnels with MSBS. Four concepts of remotely-operated propulsion simulators were examined. Three conceptual designs involving innovative adaptation of convenient technologies (compressed gas cylinders, liquid, and solid propellants) were developed. The fourth innovative concept, namely, the laser-assisted thruster, which can potentially simulate both inlet and exhaust flows, was found to require very high power levels for small thrust levels.

  2. Cubic PdNP-based air-breathing cathodes integrated in glucose hybrid biofuel cells.

    PubMed

    Faggion Junior, D; Haddad, R; Giroud, F; Holzinger, M; Maduro de Campos, C E; Acuña, J J S; Domingos, J B; Cosnier, S

    2016-05-21

    Cubic Pd nanoparticles (PdNPs) were synthesized using ascorbic acid as a reducing agent and were evaluated for the catalytic oxygen reduction reaction. PdNPs were confined with multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) dispersions to form black suspensions and these inks were dropcast onto glassy carbon electrodes. Different nanoparticle sizes were synthesized and investigated upon oxygen reduction capacities (onset potential and electrocatalytic current densities) under O2 saturated conditions at varying pH values. Strong evidence of O2 diffusion limitation was demonstrated. In order to overcome oxygen concentration and diffusion limitations in solution, we used a gas diffusion layer to create a PdNP-based air-breathing cathode, which delivered -1.5 mA cm(-2) at 0.0 V with an onset potential of 0.4 V. This air-breathing cathode was combined with a specially designed phenanthrolinequinone/glucose dehydrogenase-based anode to form a complete glucose/O2 hybrid bio-fuel cell providing an open circuit voltage of 0.554 V and delivering a maximal power output of 184 ± 21 μW cm(-2) at 0.19 V and pH 7.0. PMID:27142300

  3. Experimental Research on Induction Systems of an Air-breathing Valveless Pulse Detonation Engine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhi-wu; Chen, Xinggu; Zheng, Long-xi; Peng, Changxin; Yan, Chuan-jun

    2012-06-01

    An air-breathing valveless PDE model was designed and manufactured, which was made up of subsonic inlet, mixing chamber, ignition chamber, detonation chamber. The total pressure recovery coefficient, flux coefficient and intake resistance with six different induction systems were measured by a semi free subsonic flow field. The proof-of-principle experiments of PDE model with different induction systems were all successfully carried out, by using liquid gasoline-air mixture with low-energy system (total stored energy less than 50 mJ). The measured detonation wave pressure ratio was very close to that of C-J detonation. The air-breathing PDE model was easy to initiate and worked in good condition. The deflagration to detonation transition (DDT) and operation frequency effect on pressure traces were also investigated by experiments. The results indicated the oscillation of pressure peak at P6 enhanced with the operation frequency increased. DDT accomplished before P6 and the DDT distance was about 0.9 m (from the ignitor).

  4. Morphological and biochemical variations in the gills of 12 aquatic air-breathing anabantoid fish.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chun-Yen; Lin, Chung-Ping; Lin, Hui-Chen

    2011-01-01

    All fish species in the Anabantoidei suborder are aquatic air-breathing fish. These species have an accessory air-breathing organ, called the labyrinth organ, in the branchial cavity and can engulf air at the surface of the water to assist in gas exchange. It is therefore necessary to examine the extent of gill modification among anabantoid fish species and the potential trade-offs in their function. The experimental hypothesis that we aimed to test is whether anabantoid fishes have both morphological and functional variations in the gills among different species. We examined the gills of 12 species from three families and nine genera of Anabantoidei. Though the sizes of the fourth gill arch in three species of Trichogaster were reduced significantly, not all anabantoid species had morphological and functional variations in the gills. In these three species, the specific enzyme activity and relative protein abundance of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase were significantly higher in the anterior gills as compared with the posterior gills and the labyrinth organ. The relative abundance of cytosolic carbonic anhydrase, an indicator of gas exchange, was found to be highest in the labyrinth organ. The phylogenetic distribution of the fourth gill's morphological differentiation suggests that these variations are lineage specific, which may imply a phylogenetic influence on gill morphology in anabantoid species.

  5. Methods for Prediction of High-Speed Reacting Flows in Aerospace Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drummond, J. Philip

    2014-01-01

    Research to develop high-speed airbreathing aerospace propulsion systems was underway in the late 1950s. A major part of the effort involved the supersonic combustion ramjet, or scramjet, engine. Work had also begun to develop computational techniques for solving the equations governing the flow through a scramjet engine. However, scramjet technology and the computational methods to assist in its evolution would remain apart for another decade. The principal barrier was that the computational methods needed for engine evolution lacked the computer technology required for solving the discrete equations resulting from the numerical methods. Even today, computer resources remain a major pacing item in overcoming this barrier. Significant advances have been made over the past 35 years, however, in modeling the supersonic chemically reacting flow in a scramjet combustor. To see how scramjet development and the required computational tools finally merged, we briefly trace the evolution of the technology in both areas.

  6. Modification to the Langley 8-foot high temperature tunnel for hypersonic propulsion testing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reubush, D. E.; Puster, R. L.; Kelly, H. N.

    1987-01-01

    Described are the modifications currently under way to the Langley 8-Foot High Temperature Tunnel to produce a new, unique national resource for testing hypersonic air-breathing propulsion systems. The current tunnel, which has been used for aerothermal loads and structures research since its inception, is being modified with the addition of a LOX system to bring the oxygen content of the test medium up to that of air, the addition of alternate Mach number capability (4 and 5) to augment the current M=7 capability, improvements to the tunnel hardware to reduce maintenance downtime, the addition of a hydrogen system to allow the testing of hydrogen powered engines, and a new data system to increase both the quantity and quality of the data obtained.

  7. Center for Advanced Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    The Center for Advanced Space Propulsion (CASP) is part of the University of Tennessee-Calspan Center for Aerospace Research (CAR). It was formed in 1985 to take advantage of the extensive research faculty and staff of the University of Tennessee and Calspan Corporation. It is also one of sixteen NASA sponsored Centers established to facilitate the Commercial Development of Space. Based on investigators' qualifications in propulsion system development, and matching industries' strong intent, the Center focused its efforts in the following technical areas: advanced chemical propulsion, electric propulsion, AI/Expert systems, fluids management in microgravity, and propulsion materials processing. This annual report focuses its discussion in these technical areas.

  8. Micro electric propulsion feasibility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aston, Graeme; Aston, Martha

    1992-01-01

    Miniature, 50 kg class, strategic satellites intended for extended deployment in space require an on-board propulsion capability to perform needed attitude control adjustments and drag compensation maneuvers. Even on such very small spacecraft, these orbit maintenance functions can be significant and result in a substantial propellant mass requirement. Development of advanced propulsion technology could reduce this propellant mass significantly, and thereby maximize the payload capability of these spacecraft. In addition, spacecraft maneuverability could be enhanced and/or multi-year mission lifetimes realized. These benefits cut spacecraft replacement costs, and reduce services needed to maintain the launch vehicles. For SDIO brilliant pebble spacecraft, a miniaturized hydrazine propulsion system provides both boost and divert thrust control. This type of propulsion system is highly integrated and is capable of delivering large thrust levels for short time periods. However, orbit maintenance functions such as drag make-up require only very small velocity corrections. Using the boost and/or divert thrusters for these small corrections exposes this highly integrated propulsion system to continuous on/off cycling and thereby increases the risk of system failure. Furthermore, since drag compensation velocity corrections would be orders of magnitude less than these thrusters were designed to deliver, their effective specific impulse would be expected to be lower when operated at very short pulse lengths. The net result of these effects would be a significant depletion of the on-board hydrazine propellant supply throughout the mission, and a reduced propulsion system reliability, both of which would degrade the interceptors usefulness. In addition to SDIO brilliant pebble spacecraft, comparably small spacecraft can be anticipated for other future strategic defense applications such as surveillance and communication. For such spacecraft, high capability and reliability

  9. Fusion for Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thio, Y. C. Francis; Schafer, Charles (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    There is little doubt that humans will attempt to explore and develop the solar system in this century. A large amount of energy will be required for accomplishing this. The need for fusion propulsion is discussed. For a propulsion system, there are three important thermodynamical attributes: (1) The absolute amount of energy available, (2) the propellant exhaust velocity, and (3) the jet power per unit mass of the propulsion system (specific power). For human exploration and development of the solar system, propellant exhaust velocity in excess of 100 km/s and specific power in excess of 10 kW/kg are required. Chemical combustion can produce exhaust velocity up to about 5 km/s. Nuclear fission processes typically result in producing energy in the form of heat that needs to be manipulated at temperatures limited by materials to about 2,800 K. Using the energy to heat a hydrogen propellant increases the exhaust velocity by only a factor of about two. Alternatively the energy can be converted into electricity which is then used to accelerate particles to high exhaust velocity. The necessary power conversion and conditioning equipment, however, increases the mass of the propulsion system for the same jet power by more than two orders of magnitude over chemical system, thus greatly limits the thrust-to-weight ratio attainable. The principal advantage of the fission process is that its development is relatively mature and is available right now. If fusion can be developed, fusion appears to have the best of all worlds in terms of propulsion - it can provide the absolute amount, the propellant exhaust velocity, and the high specific jet power. An intermediate step towards pure fusion propulsion is a bimodal system in which a fission reactor is used to provide some of the energy to drive a fusion propulsion unit. The technical issues related to fusion for space propulsion are discussed. The technical priorities for developing and applying fusion for propulsion are

  10. Highlights from a Mach 4 Experimental Demonstration of Inlet Mode Transition for Turbine-Based Combined Cycle Hypersonic Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Foster, Lancert E.; Saunders, John D., Jr.; Sanders, Bobby W.; Weir, Lois J.

    2012-01-01

    NASA is focused on technologies for combined cycle, air-breathing propulsion systems to enable reusable launch systems for access to space. Turbine Based Combined Cycle (TBCC) propulsion systems offer specific impulse (Isp) improvements over rocket-based propulsion systems in the subsonic takeoff and return mission segments along with improved safety. Among the most critical TBCC enabling technologies are: 1) mode transition from the low speed propulsion system to the high speed propulsion system, 2) high Mach turbine engine development and 3) innovative turbine based combined cycle integration. To address these challenges, NASA initiated an experimental mode transition task including analytical methods to assess the state-of-the-art of propulsion system performance and design codes. One effort has been the Combined-Cycle Engine Large Scale Inlet Mode Transition Experiment (CCE-LIMX) which is a fully integrated TBCC propulsion system with flowpath sizing consistent with previous NASA and DoD proposed Hypersonic experimental flight test plans. This experiment was tested in the NASA GRC 10 by 10-Foot Supersonic Wind Tunnel (SWT) Facility. The goal of this activity is to address key hypersonic combined-cycle engine issues including: (1) dual integrated inlet operability and performance issues-unstart constraints, distortion constraints, bleed requirements, and controls, (2) mode-transition sequence elements caused by switching between the turbine and the ramjet/scramjet flowpaths (imposed variable geometry requirements), and (3) turbine engine transients (and associated time scales) during transition. Testing of the initial inlet and dynamic characterization phases were completed and smooth mode transition was demonstrated. A database focused on a Mach 4 transition speed with limited off-design elements was developed and will serve to guide future TBCC system studies and to validate higher level analyses.

  11. Electromagnetic propulsion for spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Roger M.

    1993-01-01

    Three electromagnetic propulsion technologies, solid propellant pulsed plasma thrusters (PPT), magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thrusters, and pulsed inductive thrusters (PIT) have been developed for application to auxiliary and primary spacecraft propulsion. Both the PPT and MPD thrusters have been flown in space, though only PPTs have been used on operational satellites. The performance of operational PPTs is quite poor, providing only about 8 percent efficiency at about 1000 sec specific impulse. Laboratory PPTs yielding 34 percent efficiency at 5170 sec specific impulse have been demonstrated. Laboratory MPD thrusters have been demonstrated with up to 70 percent efficiency and 7000 sec specific impulse. Recent PIT performance measurements using ammonia and hydrazine propellants are extremely encouraging, reaching 50 percent efficiency for specific impulses between 4000 and 8000 sec.

  12. Hydrodynamics of Peristaltic Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Athanassiadis, Athanasios; Hart, Douglas

    2014-11-01

    A curious class of animals called salps live in marine environments and self-propel by ejecting vortex rings much like jellyfish and squid. However, unlike other jetting creatures that siphon and eject water from one side of their body, salps produce vortex rings by pumping water through siphons on opposite ends of their hollow cylindrical bodies. In the simplest cases, it seems like some species of salp can successfully move by contracting just two siphons connected by an elastic body. When thought of as a chain of timed contractions, salp propulsion is reminiscent of peristaltic pumping applied to marine locomotion. Inspired by salps, we investigate the hydrodynamics of peristaltic propulsion, focusing on the scaling relationships that determine flow rate, thrust production, and energy usage in a model system. We discuss possible actuation methods for a model peristaltic vehicle, considering both the material and geometrical requirements for such a system.

  13. STOL propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denington, R. J.; Koenig, R. W.; Vanco, M. R.; Sagerser, D. A.

    1972-01-01

    The selection and the characteristics of quiet, clean propulsion systems for STOL aircraft are discussed. Engines are evaluated for augmentor wing and externally blown flap STOL aircraft with the engines located both under and over the wings. Some supporting test data are presented. Optimum engines are selected based on achieving the performance, economic, acoustic, and pollution goals presently being considered for future STOL aircraft. The data and results presented were obtained from a number of contracted studies and some supporting NASA inhouse programs, most of which began in early 1972. The contracts include: (1) two aircraft and mission studies, (2) two propulsion system studies, (3) the experimental and analytic work on the augmentor wing, and (4) the experimental programs on Q-Fan. Engines are selected and discussed based on aircraft economics using the direct operating cost as the primary criterion. This cost includes the cost of the crew, fuel, aircraft, and engine maintenance and depreciation.

  14. Hybrid propulsion technology program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    Technology was identified which will enable application of hybrid propulsion to manned and unmanned space launch vehicles. Two design concepts are proposed. The first is a hybrid propulsion system using the classical method of regression (classical hybrid) resulting from the flow of oxidizer across a fuel grain surface. The second system uses a self-sustaining gas generator (gas generator hybrid) to produce a fuel rich exhaust that was mixed with oxidizer in a separate combustor. Both systems offer cost and reliability improvement over the existing solid rocket booster and proposed liquid boosters. The designs were evaluated using life cycle cost and reliability. The program consisted of: (1) identification and evaluation of candidate oxidizers and fuels; (2) preliminary evaluation of booster design concepts; (3) preparation of a detailed point design including life cycle costs and reliability analyses; (4) identification of those hybrid specific technologies needing improvement; and (5) preperation of a technology acquisition plan and large scale demonstration plan.

  15. Hypersonic missile propulsion system

    SciTech Connect

    Kazmar, R.R.

    1998-11-01

    Pratt and Whitney is developing the technology for hypersonic components and engines. A supersonic combustion ramjet (scramjet) database was developed using hydrogen fueled propulsion systems for space access vehicles and serves as a point of departure for the current development of hydrocarbon scramjets. The Air Force Hypersonic Technology (HyTech) Program has put programs in place to develop the technologies necessary to demonstrate the operability, performance and structural durability of an expendable, liquid hydrocarbon fueled scramjet system that operates from Mach 4 to 8. This program will culminate in a flight type engine test at representative flight conditions. The hypersonic technology base that will be developed and demonstrated under HyTech will establish the foundation to enable hypersonic propulsion systems for a broad range of air vehicle applications from missiles to space access vehicles. A hypersonic missile flight demonstration is planned in the DARPA Affordable Rapid Response Missile Demonstrator (ARRMD) program in 2001.

  16. Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, David

    2011-01-01

    The CPS is an in-space cryogenic propulsive stage based largely on state of the practice design for launch vehicle upper stages. However, unlike conventional propulsive stages, it also contains power generation and thermal control systems to limit the loss of liquid hydrogen and oxygen due to boil-off during extended in-space storage. The CPS provides the necessary (Delta)V for rapid transfer of in-space elements to their destinations or staging points (i.e., E-M L1). The CPS is designed around a block upgrade strategy to provide maximum mission/architecture flexibility. Block 1 CPS: Short duration flight times (hours), passive cryo fluid management. Block 2 CPS: Long duration flight times (days/weeks/months), active and passive cryo fluid management.

  17. Emerging Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keys, Andrew S.

    2006-01-01

    The Emerging Propulsion Technologies (EPT) investment area is the newest area within the In-Space Propulsion Technology (ISPT) Project and strives to bridge technologies in the lower Technology Readiness Level (TRL) range (2 to 3) to the mid TRL range (4 to 6). A prioritization process, the Integrated In-Space Transportation Planning (IISTP), was developed and applied in FY01 to establish initial program priorities. The EPT investment area emerged for technologies that scored well in the IISTP but had a low technical maturity level. One particular technology, the Momentum-eXchange Electrodynamic-Reboost (MXER) tether, scored extraordinarily high and had broad applicability in the IISTP. However, its technical maturity was too low for ranking alongside technologies like the ion engine or aerocapture. Thus MXER tethers assumed top priority at EPT startup in FY03 with an aggressive schedule and adequate budget. It was originally envisioned that future technologies would enter the ISP portfolio through EPT, and EPT developed an EPT/ISP Entrance Process for future candidate ISP technologies. EPT has funded the following secondary, candidate ISP technologies at a low level: ultra-lightweight solar sails, general space/near-earth tether development, electrodynamic tether development, advanced electric propulsion, and in-space mechanism development. However, the scope of the ISPT program has focused over time to more closely match SMD needs and technology advancement successes. As a result, the funding for MXER and other EPT technologies is not currently available. Consequently, the MXER tether tasks and other EPT tasks were expected to phased out by November 2006. Presentation slides are presented which provide activity overviews for the aerocapture technology and emerging propulsion technology projects.

  18. Chemical propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Priem, R. J.

    1980-01-01

    An overview of NASA's low thrust liquid chemical propulsion program is presented with particular emphasis on thrust system technology in the ten to one thousand pound thrust range. Key technology issues include high performance of cooled low thrust engines; small cryogenic pumps; multiple starts-shutdowns (10) with slow ramps (approximately 10 seconds); thrust variation - 4/1 in flight and 20/1 between flights; long life (100 hours); improved system weight and size; and propellant selection.

  19. Interstellar Propulsion Concepts Assessment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forward, Robert L.

    2000-01-01

    NASA is investigating the feasibility of conducting extra-solar and interstellar missions over the next 10 to 50 years. An assessment of technologies supporting these near and far term objectives is required. To help meet these objectives the Principal Investigator assessed the feasibility of candidate propulsion systems for the proposed 'Interstellar Probe', a mission to send a spacecraft to the Heliopause at 250 AU and beyond.

  20. Nuclear pulse propulsion for interplanetary travel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassenti, Brice N.

    2001-02-01

    Over the last forty years there has been continuous interest in both internal and external pulse propulsion systems. The nuclear devices being considered are now considerably smaller than those initially examined. Pellets are normally in the range from 15 cm down to 2 cm in diameter, and fusion is generally preferred. Detonation can occur using high energy density triggers such as lasers, particle beams or antiprotons. In inertial confinement fusion the energy can be provided using laser beams or particle beams. When antiprotons are considered it is more efficient to annihilate the antiprotons in a fissionable material, and then use the energy from the fission reaction to drive the fusion reaction in the pellet. Finally, it is also possible to include fissionable material that can boost the performance of a fusion system. The early concepts, which used critical mass devices, do not satisfy the ban on nuclear weapons in space, and are only rarely considered today. Concepts based on inertial confinement fusion are heavier than those that use antiprotons for the trigger due to the mass associated with the lasers, or particle beams and their power supplies. Hence, from a performance, and political, point of view the antiproton triggered approach is the most desirable, but it also requires more development. Propulsion systems based on critical mass devices are clearly feasible, so the primary problem is to reduce the size of the explosive devices so that a critical mass is not required. If pulse nuclear fusion propulsion can become a reality then the performance is enough to complete manned missions to the inner planets in weeks and the outer planets in months. .

  1. Free radical propulsion concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hawkins, C. E.; Nakanishi, S.

    1981-01-01

    The concept of a free radical propulsion system, utilizing the recombination energy of dissociated low molecular weight gases to produce thrust, is analyzed. The system, operating at a theoretical impulse with hydrogen, as high as 2200 seconds at high thrust to power ratio, is hypothesized to bridge the gap between chemical and electrostatic propulsion capabilities. A comparative methodology is outlined by which characteristics of chemical and electric propulsion for orbit raising mission can be investigated. It is noted that free radicals proposed in rockets previously met with difficulty and complexity in terms of storage requirements; the present study proposes to eliminate the storage requirements by using electric energy to achieve a continuous-flow product of free radicals which are recombined to produce a high velocity propellant. Microwave energy used to dissociate a continuously flowing gas is transferred to the propellant via three-body-recombination for conversion to propellant kinetic energy. Microwave plasma discharge was found in excess of 90 percent over a broad range of pressure in preliminary experiments, and microwave heating compared to electrothermal heating showed much higher temperatures in gasdynamic equations.

  2. The MAP Propulsion Subsystem

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, Gary T.; Bauer, Frank H. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This paper describes the requirements, design, integration, test, performance, and lessons learned of NASA's Microwave Anisotropy Probe (MAP) propulsion subsystem. MAP was launched on a Delta-II launch vehicle from NASA's Kennedy Space Center on June 30, 2001. Due to instrument thermal stability requirements, the Earth-Sun L2 Lagrange point was selected for the mission orbit. The L2 trajectory incorporated phasing loops and a lunar gravity assist. The propulsion subsystem's requirements are to manage momentum, perform maneuvers during the phasing loops to set up the lunar swingby, and perform stationkeeping at L2 for 2 years. MAP's propulsion subsystem uses 8 thrusters which are located and oriented to provide attitude control and momentum management about all axes, and delta-V in any direction without exposing the instrument to the sun. The propellant tank holds 72 kg of hydrazine, which is expelled by unregulated blowdown pressurization. Thermal management is complex because no heater cycling is allowed at L2. Several technical challenges presented themselves during I and T, such as in-situ weld repairs and in-situ bending of thruster tubes to accommodate late changes in the observatory CG. On-orbit performance has been nominal, and all phasing loop, mid-course correction, and stationkeeping maneuvers have been successfully performed to date.

  3. In-Space Propulsion Solar Electric Propulsion Technology Overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dankanich, John W.

    2006-12-01

    NASA’s In-space Propulsion Technology Project is developing new propulsion technologies that can enable or enhance near and mid-term NASA science missions. The solar electric propulsion technology area has been investing in NASA’s Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT), the High Voltage Hall Accelerator (HiVHAC), lightweight reliable feed systems, wear testing and thruster modeling. These investments are specifically targeted to increase planetary science payload capability, expand the envelope of planetary science destinations, and significantly reduce the travel times, risk and cost of NASA planetary science missions. Current status and expected capabilities of the solar electric propulsion technologies will be discussed.

  4. Heat transfer in aerospace propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simoneau, Robert J.; Hendricks, Robert C.; Gladden, Herbert J.

    1988-01-01

    Presented is an overview of heat transfer related research in support of aerospace propulsion, particularly as seen from the perspective of the NASA Lewis Research Center. Aerospace propulsion is defined to cover the full spectrum from conventional aircraft power plants through the Aerospace Plane to space propulsion. The conventional subsonic/supersonic aircraft arena, whether commercial or military, relies on the turbine engine. A key characteristic of turbine engines is that they involve fundamentally unsteady flows which must be properly treated. Space propulsion is characterized by very demanding performance requirements which frequently push systems to their limits and demand tailored designs. The hypersonic flight propulsion systems are subject to severe heat loads and the engine and airframe are truly one entity. The impact of the special demands of each of these aerospace propulsion systems on heat transfer is explored.

  5. NASA Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    1998-01-01

    In 1996, NASA established the Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program to seek the ultimate breakthroughs in space transportation: propulsion that requires no propellant mass, propulsion that attains the maximum transit speeds physically possible, and breakthrough methods of energy production to power such devices. Topics of interest include experiments and theories regarding the coupling of gravity and electromagnetism, vacuum fluctuation energy, warp drives and worm-holes, and superluminal quantum effects. Because these propulsion goals are presumably far from fruition, a special emphasis is to identify affordable, near-term, and credible research that could make measurable progress toward these propulsion goals. The methods of the program and the results of the 1997 workshop are presented. This Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program, managed by Lewis Research Center, is one part of a comprehensive, long range Advanced Space Transportation Plan managed by Marshall Space Flight Center.

  6. Embedded Wing Propulsion Conceptual Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Hyun D.; Saunders, John D.

    2003-01-01

    As a part of distributed propulsion work under NASA's Revolutionary Aeropropulsion Concepts or RAC project, a new propulsion-airframe integrated vehicle concept called Embedded Wing Propulsion (EWP) is developed and examined through system and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies. The idea behind the concept is to fully integrate a propulsion system within a wing structure so that the aircraft takes full benefits of coupling of wing aerodynamics and the propulsion thrust stream. The objective of this study is to assess the feasibility of the EWP concept applied to large transport aircraft such as the Blended-Wing-Body aircraft. In this paper, some of early analysis and current status of the study are presented. In addition, other current activities of distributed propulsion under the RAC project are briefly discussed.

  7. The Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Broadway, Jeramie W.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP). Nuclear propulsion can be affordable and viable compared to other propulsion systems and must overcome a biased public fear due to hyper-environmentalism and a false perception of radiation and explosion risk.

  8. Planar array stack design aided by rapid prototyping in development of air-breathing PEMFC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Chen-Yu; Lai, Wei-Hsiang; Weng, Biing-Jyh; Chuang, Huey-Jan; Hsieh, Ching-Yuan; Kung, Chien-Chih

    The polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) is one of the most important research topics in the new and clean energy area. The middle or high power PEMFCs can be applied to the transportation or the distributed power system. But for the small power application, it is needed to match the power requirement of the product generally. On the other hand, the direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) is one of the most common type that researchers are interested in, but recently the miniature or the micro-PEMFCs attract more attention due to their advantages of high open circuit voltage and high power density. The objective of this study is to develop a new air-breathing planar array fuel cell stacked from 10 cells made by rapid prototyping technology which has potential for fast commercial design, low cost manufacturing, and even without converters/inverters for the system. In this paper, the main material of flow field plates is acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) which allows the fuel cell be mass-manufactured by plastic injection molding technology. The rapid prototyping technology is applied to construct the prototype and verify the practicability of the proposed stack design. A 10-cell air-breathing miniature PEMFC stack with a volume of 6 cm × 6 cm × 0.9 cm is developed and tested. Its segmented membrane electrode assembly (MEA) is designed with the active surface area of 1.3 cm × 1.3 cm in each individual MEA. The platinum loading at anode and cathode are 0.2 mg cm -2 and 0.4 mg cm -2, respectively. Results show that the peak power densities of the parallel connected and serial connected stack are 99 mW cm -2 at 0.425 V and 92 mW cm -2 at 4.25 V, respectively under the conditions of 70 °C relative saturated humidity (i.e., dew point temperature), ambient temperature and free convection air. Besides, the stack performance is increased under forced convection. If the cell surface air is blown by an electric fan, the peak power densities of parallel connected and

  9. Multi-Disciplinary Design Optimization of Hypersonic Air-Breathing Vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Peng; Tang, Zhili; Sheng, Jianda

    2016-06-01

    A 2D hypersonic vehicle shape with an idealized scramjet is designed at a cruise regime: Mach number (Ma) = 8.0, Angle of attack (AOA) = 0 deg and altitude (H) = 30kms. Then a multi-objective design optimization of the 2D vehicle is carried out by using a Pareto Non-dominated Sorting Genetic Algorithm II (NSGA-II). In the optimization process, the flow around the air-breathing vehicle is simulated by inviscid Euler equations using FLUENT software and the combustion in the combustor is modeled by a methodology based on the well known combination effects of area-varying pipe flow and heat transfer pipe flow. Optimization results reveal tradeoffs among total pressure recovery coefficient of forebody, lift to drag ratio of vehicle, specific impulse of scramjet engine and the maximum temperature on the surface of vehicle.

  10. Continuous high order sliding mode controller design for a flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicle.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jie; Zong, Qun; Su, Rui; Tian, Bailing

    2014-05-01

    This paper investigates the problem of tracking control with uncertainties for a flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicle (FAHV). In order to overcome the analytical intractability of this model, an Input-Output linearization model is constructed for the purpose of feedback control design. Then, the continuous finite time convergence high order sliding mode controller is designed for the Input-Output linearization model without uncertainties. In addition, a nonlinear disturbance observer is applied to estimate the uncertainties in order to compensate the controller and disturbance suppression, where disturbance observer and controller synthesis design is obtained. Finally, the synthesis of controller and disturbance observer is used to achieve the tracking for the velocity and altitude of the FAHV and simulations are presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the control strategies.

  11. Robust tracking control for an air-breathing hypersonic vehicle with input constraints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Gang; Wang, Jinzhi; Wang, Xianghua

    2014-12-01

    The focus of this paper is on the design and simulation of robust tracking control for an air-breathing hypersonic vehicle (AHV), which is affected by high nonlinearity, uncertain parameters and input constraints. The linearisation method is employed for the longitudinal AHV model about a specific trim condition, and then considering the additive uncertainties of three parameters, the linearised model is just in the form of affine parameter dependence. From this point, the linear parameter-varying method is applied to design the desired controller. The poles for the closed-loop system of the linearised model are placed into a desired vertical strip, and the quadratic stability of the closed-loop system is guaranteed. Input constraints of the AHV are addressed by additional linear matrix inequalities. Finally, the designed controller is evaluated on the nonlinear AHV model and simulation results demonstrate excellent tracking performance with good robustness.

  12. Water management in a planar air-breathing fuel cell array using operando neutron imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coz, E.; Théry, J.; Boillat, P.; Faucheux, V.; Alincant, D.; Capron, P.; Gébel, G.

    2016-11-01

    Operando Neutron imaging is used for the investigation of a planar air-breathing array comprising multiple cells in series. The fuel cell demonstrates a stable power density level of 150 mW/cm2. Water distribution and quantification is carried out at different operating points. Drying at high current density is observed and correlated to self-heating and natural convection. Working in dead-end mode, water accumulation at lower current density is largely observed on the anode side. However, flooding mechanisms are found to begin with water condensation on the cathode side, leading to back-diffusion and anodic flooding. Specific in-plane and through-plane water distribution is observed and linked to the planar array design.

  13. Relativistic propulsion using directed energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bible, Johanna; Johansson, Isabella; Hughes, Gary B.; Lubin, Philip M.

    2013-09-01

    We propose a directed energy orbital planetary defense system capable of heating the surface of potentially hazardous objects to the evaporation point as a futuristic but feasible approach to impact risk mitigation. The system is based on recent advances in high efficiency photonic systems. The system could also be used for propulsion of kinetic or nuclear tipped asteroid interceptors or other interplanetary spacecraft. A photon drive is possible using direct photon pressure on a spacecraft similar to a solar sail. Given a laser power of 70GW, a 100 kg craft can be propelled to 1AU in approximately 3 days achieving a speed of 0.4% the speed of light, and a 10,000 kg craft in approximately 30 days. We call the system DE-STAR for Directed Energy System for Targeting of Asteroids and exploRation. DE-STAR is a modular phased array of solid-state lasers, powered by photovoltaic conversion of sunlight. The system is scalable and completely modular so that sub elements can be built and tested as the technology matures. The sub elements can be immediately utilized for testing as well as other applications including space debris mitigation. The ultimate objective of DE-STAR would be to begin direct asteroid vaporization and orbital modification starting at distances beyond 1 AU. Using phased array technology to focus the beam, the surface spot temperature on the asteroid can be raised to more than 3000K, allowing evaporation of all known substances. Additional scientific uses of DE-STAR are also possible.

  14. Electrolysis Propulsion for Spacecraft Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    deGroot, Wim A.; Arrington, Lynn A.; McElroy, James F.; Mitlitsky, Fred; Weisberg, Andrew H.; Carter, Preston H., II; Myers, Blake; Reed, Brian D.

    1997-01-01

    Electrolysis propulsion has been recognized over the last several decades as a viable option to meet many satellite and spacecraft propulsion requirements. This technology, however, was never used for in-space missions. In the same time frame, water based fuel cells have flown in a number of missions. These systems have many components similar to electrolysis propulsion systems. Recent advances in component technology include: lightweight tankage, water vapor feed electrolysis, fuel cell technology, and thrust chamber materials for propulsion. Taken together, these developments make propulsion and/or power using electrolysis/fuel cell technology very attractive as separate or integrated systems. A water electrolysis propulsion testbed was constructed and tested in a joint NASA/Hamilton Standard/Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories program to demonstrate these technology developments for propulsion. The results from these testbed experiments using a I-N thruster are presented. A concept to integrate a propulsion system and a fuel cell system into a unitized spacecraft propulsion and power system is outlined.

  15. Reactors for nuclear electric propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Buden, D.; Angelo, J.A. Jr.

    1981-01-01

    Propulsion is the key to space exploitation and power is the key to propulsion. This paper examines the role of nuclear fission reactors as the primary power source for high specific impulse electric propulsion systems for space missions of the 1980s and 1990s. Particular mission applications include transfer to and a reusable orbital transfer vehicle from low-Earth orbit to geosynchronous orbit, outer planet exploration and reconnaissance missions, and as a versatile space tug supporting lunar resource development. Nuclear electric propulsion is examined as an indispensable component in space activities of the next two decades.

  16. Nuclear propulsion systems engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Madsen, W.W.; Neuman, J.E.: Van Haaften, D.H.

    1992-01-01

    The Nuclear Energy for Rocket Vehicle Application (NERVA) program of the 1960's and early 1970's was dramatically successful, with no major failures during the entire testing program. This success was due in large part to the successful development of a systems engineering process. Systems engineering, properly implemented, involves all aspects of the system design and operation, and leads to optimization of theentire system: cost, schedule, performance, safety, reliability, function, requirements, etc. The process must be incorporated from the very first and continued to project completion. This paper will discuss major aspects of the NERVA systems engineering effort, and consider the implications for current nuclear propulsion efforts.

  17. Nuclear propulsion systems engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Madsen, W.W.; Neuman, J.E.: Van Haaften, D.H.

    1992-12-31

    The Nuclear Energy for Rocket Vehicle Application (NERVA) program of the 1960`s and early 1970`s was dramatically successful, with no major failures during the entire testing program. This success was due in large part to the successful development of a systems engineering process. Systems engineering, properly implemented, involves all aspects of the system design and operation, and leads to optimization of theentire system: cost, schedule, performance, safety, reliability, function, requirements, etc. The process must be incorporated from the very first and continued to project completion. This paper will discuss major aspects of the NERVA systems engineering effort, and consider the implications for current nuclear propulsion efforts.

  18. Advanced propulsion concepts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sercel, Joel C.

    1991-01-01

    The topics presented are covered in viewgraph form. The programmatic objective is to establish the feasibility of propulsion technologies for vastly expanded space activity. The technical objective is a revolutionary performance sought, such as: (1) about 1 kg/kW specific mass; (2) specific impulse tailored to mission requirements; (3) ability to use in-situ resources; (4) round-trips to Mars in months; (5) round-trips to outer planets in 1 to 2 years; and (6) the capability for robotic mission beyond the solar system.

  19. Lasers in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michaelis, M. M.; Forbes, A.; Bingham, R.; Kellett, B. J.; Mathye, A.

    2008-05-01

    A variety of laser applications in space, past, present, future and far future are reviewed together with the contributions of some of the scientists and engineers involved, especially those that happen to have South African connections. Historically, two of the earliest laser applications in space, were atmospheric LIDAR and lunar ranging. These applications involved atmospheric physicists, several astronauts and many of the staff recruited into the Soviet and North American lunar exploration programmes. There is a strong interest in South Africa in both LIDAR and lunar ranging. Shortly after the birth of the laser (and even just prior) theoretical work on photonic propulsion and space propulsion by laser ablation was initiated by Georgii Marx, Arthur Kantrowitz and Eugen Saenger. Present or near future experimental programs are developing in the following fields: laser ablation propulsion, possibly coupled with rail gun or gas gun propulsion; interplanetary laser transmission; laser altimetry; gravity wave detection by space based Michelson interferometry; the de-orbiting of space debris by high power lasers; atom laser interferometry in space. Far future applications of laser-photonic space-propulsion were also pioneered by Carl Sagan and Robert Forward. They envisaged means of putting Saenger's ideas into practice. Forward also invented a laser based method for manufacturing solid antimatter or SANTIM, well before the ongoing experiments at CERN with anti-hydrogen production and laser-trapping. SANTIM would be an ideal propellant for interstellar missions if it could be manufactured in sufficient quantities. It would be equally useful as a power source for the transmission of information over light year distances. We briefly mention military lasers. Last but not least, we address naturally occurring lasers in space and pose the question: "did the Big Bang lase?"

  20. Propulsion by light: visions of the German pioneer Eugen Saenger

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bohn, Willy L.

    2005-03-01

    Although the laser was not yet invented Eugen Sanger, one of the most prominent German personalities in the early development of hypersonic flight and rocket technology suggested to use photons for the propulsion of spacecrafts in the fifties. In contrast to current schemes which are mostly aimed at laser induced ablation processes, Eugen Sanger started with the idea of using the radiation pressure itself for propulsion purposes. A review of his pioneering work in that area will be supported by numerous historical documents and personal remembrance showing his effort to promote unconventional ideas. The paper also emphasizes how some of the original concepts are being revisited and partly implemented by using today's laser technology.

  1. Additive Manufacturing of Aerospace Propulsion Components

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Misra, Ajay K.; Grady, Joseph E.; Carter, Robert

    2015-01-01

    The presentation will provide an overview of ongoing activities on additive manufacturing of aerospace propulsion components, which included rocket propulsion and gas turbine engines. Future opportunities on additive manufacturing of hybrid electric propulsion components will be discussed.

  2. Laser ablation studies in southern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKenzie, Edric; Forbes, A.; Turner, G. R.; Michaelis, Max M.

    2000-08-01

    With the launch of the South African National Laser Centre, new programs will need to be defined. Medical, environmental and industrial laser applications must obviously take top priority -- as opposed to the uranium isotope separation and military applications of the past. We argue however, that a small effort in laser ablation for space propulsion is justifiable, since a few very large CO2 lasers are available and since two tentative propulsion experiments have already been conducted in South Africa. We attempt to give LISP (Laser Impulse Space Propulsion) an equatorial and a Southern dimension.

  3. Assessing Potential Propulsion Breakthroughs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    2005-01-01

    The term, propulsion breakthrough, refers to concepts like propellantless space drives and faster-than-light travel, the kind of breakthroughs that would make interstellar exploration practical. Although no such breakthroughs appear imminent, a variety of investigations into these goals have begun. From 1996 to 2002, NASA supported the Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Project to examine physics in the context of breakthrough spaceflight. Three facets of these assessments are now reported: (1) predicting benefits, (2) selecting research, and (3) recent technical progress. Predicting benefits is challenging since the breakthroughs are still only notional concepts, but kinetic energy can serve as a basis for comparison. In terms of kinetic energy, a hypothetical space drive could require many orders of magnitude less energy than a rocket for journeys to our nearest neighboring star. Assessing research options is challenging when the goals are beyond known physics and when the implications of success are profound. To mitigate the challenges, a selection process is described where: (a) research tasks are constrained to only address the immediate unknowns, curious effects or critical issues, (b) reliability of assertions is more important than their implications, and (c) reviewers judge credibility rather than feasibility. The recent findings of a number of tasks, some selected using this process, are discussed. Of the 14 tasks included, six reached null conclusions, four remain unresolved, and four have opportunities for sequels. A dominant theme with the sequels is research about the properties of space, inertial frames, and the quantum vacuum.

  4. Assessing potential propulsion breakthroughs.

    PubMed

    Millis, Marc G

    2005-12-01

    The term, propulsion breakthrough, refers to concepts like propellantless space drives and faster-than-light travel, the kind of breakthroughs that would make interstellar exploration practical. Although no such breakthroughs appear imminent, a variety of investigations have begun. During 1996-2002 NASA supported the breakthrough propulsion physics project to examine physics in the context of breakthrough spaceflight. Three facets of these assessments are now reported: (1) predicting benefits, (2) selecting research, and (3) recent technical progress. Predicting benefits is challenging, since the breakthroughs are still only notional concepts, but energy can serve as a basis for comparison. A hypothetical space drive would require many orders of magnitude less energy than a rocket for journeys to our nearest neighboring star. Assessing research options is challenging when the goals are beyond known physics and when the implications of success are profound. To mitigate the challenges, a selection process is described where: (1) research tasks are constrained to only address the immediate unknowns, curious effects, or critical issues; (2) reliability of assertions is more important than their implications; and (3) reviewers judge credibility rather than feasibility. The recent findings of a number of tasks, some selected using this process, are discussed. Of the 14 tasks included, six reached null conclusions, four remain unresolved, and four have opportunities for sequels. A dominant theme with the sequels is research about the properties of space, inertial frames, and the quantum vacuum.

  5. Electromagnetic propulsion for spacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Roger M.

    1993-01-01

    Three electromagnetic propulsion technologies, solid propellant pulsed plasma thrusters (PPT), magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thrusters, and pulsed inductive thrusters (PIT), were developed for application to auxiliary and primary spacecraft propulsion. Both the PPT and MPD thrusters were flown in space, though only PPT's were used on operational satellites. The performance of operational PPT's is quite poor, providing only approximately 8 percent efficiency at approximately 1000 s specific impulse. However, laboratory PPT's yielding 34 percent efficiency at 2000 s specific impulse were extensively tested, and peak performance levels of 53 percent efficiency at 5170 s specific impulse were demonstrated. MPD thrusters were flown as experiments on the Japanese MS-T4 spacecraft and the Space Shuttle and were qualified for a flight in 1994. The flight MPD thrusters were pulsed, with a peak performance of 22 percent efficiency at 2500 s specific impulse using ammonia propellant. Laboratory MPD thrusters were demonstrated with up to 70 percent efficiency and 700 s specific impulse using lithium propellant. While the PIT thruster has never been flown, recent performance measurements using ammonia and hydrazine propellants are extremely encouraging, reaching 50 percent efficiency for specific impulses between 4000 to 8000 s. The fundamental operating principles, performance measurements, and system level design for the three types of electromagnetic thrusters are reviewed, and available data on flight tests are discussed for the PPT and MPD thrusters.

  6. Overview on hybrid propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calabro, M.

    2011-10-01

    Aside of research works, this historical survey shows propulsion units used by students for small satellites and for gas generation, or those for the Space Ship One, even if LOx/HTPB was studied and tested in large motors for its potential very low cost; however, this combination highlights a series of technical problems without any performance advantage over the existing LOx/Kerosene family and never been operational for ETO applications. The particularity of hybrid propulsion is to use the state-of-the-art of both liquids and solids; the only show stopper is the propellant itself. The past work focused on LOx/HTPB (selected for its low cost) appears to be a dead-end (combustion problems and global low performances resulting from a high level of residuals). The solution that appears through the past experience is the addition of hydrides to a binder (HTPB or other) or to a binder and a homogeneous fuel or a mixture of both, with or without others additives; within these solutions some will not present any manufacturing problem and some may have a low cost. Nevertheless, the studies of the following phases have to demonstrate the compatibility of the potential regression rate range with a high-performance global design of a hybrid Motor and the manufacturing at a reasonable cost of a hydride giving a high level of performances.

  7. Ship propulsion system

    SciTech Connect

    Kimon, P.M.

    1986-01-21

    This patent describes an improved efficiency propulsion system for a ship operated at both deep and shallow water depths, and at variable loaded and ballast waterlines. This propulsion system consists of a number of elements interactive in their operation. The first component of the system detailed is a variable diameter propeller means equipped with a mechanism for varying the diameter of the propeller between a maximum extended diameter and a minimum diameter. The next component of the system depicted in the patent is a propeller shaft mounting which enables the propeller to rotate in the stern portion of the ship. The propeller shaft is characterized as extending parallel to the bottom keel of the ship and having an axis of rotation displaced from the bottom keel a distance less than one-half the maximum diameter of the propeller means but more than one-half of the minimum diameter of the propeller means. As a consequence of the systems design characteristics the ship may obtain maximum propeller efficiency by means of the extension in diameter of the propeller means when it is operated in a fully loaded condition in deep water.

  8. Integrated airframe propulsion control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fennell, R. E.; Black, S. B.

    1982-01-01

    Perturbation equations which describe flight dynamics and engine operation about a given operating point are combined to form an integrated aircraft/propulsion system model. Included in the model are the dependence of aerodynamic coefficients upon atmospheric variables along with the dependence of engine variables upon flight condition and inlet performance. An off-design engine performance model is used to identify interaction parameters in the model. Inclusion of subsystem interaction effects introduces coupling between flight and propulsion variables. To analyze interaction effects on control, consideration is first given to control requirements for separate flight and engine models. For the separate airframe model, feedback control provides substantial improvement in short period damping. For the integrated system, feedback control compensates for the coupling present in the model and provides good overall system stability. However, this feedback control law involves many non-zero gains. Analysis of suboptimal control strategies indicates that performance of the closed loop integrated system can be maintained with a feedback matrix in which the number of non-zero gains is small relative to the number of components in the feedback matrix.

  9. Quality Issues in Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McCarty, John P.; Lyles, Garry M.

    1997-01-01

    Propulsion system quality is defined in this paper as having high reliability, that is, quality is a high probability of within-tolerance performance or operation. Since failures are out-of-tolerance performance, the probability of failures and their occurrence is the difference between high and low quality systems. Failures can be described at 3 levels: the system failure (which is the detectable end of a failure), the failure mode (which is the failure process), and the failure cause (which is the start). Failure causes can be evaluated & classified by type. The results of typing flight history failures shows that most failures are in unrecognized modes and result from human error or noise, i.e. failures are when engineers learn how things really work. Although the study based on US launch vehicles, a sampling of failures from other countries indicates the finding has broad application. The parameters of the design of a propulsion system are not single valued, but have dispersions associated with the manufacturing of parts. Many tests are needed to find failures, if the dispersions are large relative to tolerances, which could contribute to the large number of failures in unrecognized modes.

  10. Emergent Propulsion Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Fakdi Sencianes, Andres

    2002-01-01

    almost an Engineer (2002 will be my last year as student) and the studies that I'm now ending here, in Girona, are closely related not only with science and technology subjects but with optimization and economic result obtention, too. Huge distances that separate us from everything in space have launched scientists and engineers into a new challenge: How to reach maximum speeds keeping high ratios payload/total spacecraft mass? The key limitation of chemical rockets is that their exhaust velocity is relatively low. Because achieving Earth orbit requires a high velocity change a rocket must carry far more propellant than payload. The answer to all this complications seems to stare in one way: electric propulsion systems and the possibility of taking advantatge of solar winds to thrust our crafts. possible solutions, some of them have been studied for years and now they are not a project but a reality; also newest theories bring us the possibility of dream. Improve of commom propellants, search of new ones: Investigators continued research on use of atomic species as high-energy-density propellants, which could increase the specific impulse of hydrogen/oxygen rockets by 50-150%. Nuclear fission propulsion: Centered in development of reactors for nearterm nuclear electric propulsion aplications. Multimegawatt systems based on vapor core reactors and magnetohydrodynamic power conversion. Engineers investigated new fuels for compact nuclear thermal propulsion systems. What is called plasma state?: When a gas is heated to tens of thousands or millions of degrees, atoms lose their electrons. The result is a "soup" of charged particles, or plasma, made up of negatively charged electrons and positively charged ions. No known material can contain the hot plasma necessary for rocket propulsion, but specially designed magnetic fields can. Plasma rockets: This rockets are not powered by conventional chemical reactions as today's rockets are, but by electrical energy that heats

  11. Investigation of advanced propulsion technologies: The RAM accelerator and the flowing gas radiation heater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruckner, A. P.; Knowlen, C.; Mattick, A. T.; Hertzberg, A.

    1992-01-01

    The two principal areas of advanced propulsion investigated are the ram accelerator and the flowing gas radiation heater. The concept of the ram accelerator is presented as a hypervelocity launcher for large-scale aeroballistic range applications in hypersonics and aerothermodynamics research. The ram accelerator is an in-bore ramjet device in which a projectile shaped like the centerbody of a supersonic ramjet is propelled in a stationary tube filled with a tailored combustible gas mixture. Combustion on and behind the projectile generates thrust which accelerates it to very high velocities. The acceleration can be tailored for the 'soft launch' of instrumented models. The distinctive reacting flow phenomena that have been observed in the ram accelerator are relevant to the aerothermodynamic processes in airbreathing hypersonic propulsion systems and are useful for validating sophisticated CFD codes. The recently demonstrated scalability of the device and the ability to control the rate of acceleration offer unique opportunities for the use of the ram accelerator as a large-scale hypersonic ground test facility. The flowing gas radiation receiver is a novel concept for using solar energy to heat a working fluid for space power or propulsion. Focused solar radiation is absorbed directly in a working gas, rather than by heat transfer through a solid surface. Previous theoretical analysis had demonstrated that radiation trapping reduces energy loss compared to that of blackbody receivers, and enables higher efficiencies and higher peak temperatures. An experiment was carried out to measure the temperature profile of an infrared-active gas and demonstrate the effect of radiation trapping. The success of this effort validates analytical models of heat transfer in this receiver, and confirms the potential of this approach for achieving high efficiency space power and propulsion.

  12. Nuclear electric propulsion systems overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doherty, Michael P.

    1993-01-01

    The topics are presented in viewgraph form and include the following: nuclear propulsion background; schedule for the nuclear electric propulsion (NEP) project; NEP for the Space Exploration Initiative; NEP on-going systems tasks; 20KWe mission/system study; and agenda.

  13. Progress in NASA Rotorcraft Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DellaCorte, Christopher; Johnson, Susan M.

    2008-01-01

    This presentation reviews recent progress made under NASA s Subsonic Rotary Wing (SRW) propulsion research activities. Advances in engines, drive systems and optimized propulsion systems are discussed. Progress in wide operability compressors, modeling of variable geometry turbine performance, foil gas bearings and multi-speed transmissions are presented.

  14. The NASA Electric Propulsion Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Callahan, Lisa Wood; Curran, Francis M.

    1996-01-01

    Nearly all space missions require on-board propulsion systems and these systems typically have a major impact on spacecraft mass and cost. Electric propulsion systems offer major performance advantages over conventional chemical systems for many mission functions and the NASA Office of Space Access and Technology (OSAT) supports an extensive effort to develop the technology for high-performance, on-board electric propulsion system options to enhance and enable near- and far-term US space missions. This program includes research and development efforts on electrothermal, electrostatic, and electromagnetic propulsion system technologies to cover a wide range of potential applications. To maximize expectations of technology transfer, the program emphasizes strong interaction with the user community through a variety of cooperative and contracted approaches. This paper provides an overview of the OSAT electric propulsion program with an emphasis on recent progress and future directions.

  15. Australian Science and Technology with Relevance to Beamed Energy Propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Froning, H. David Jr

    2008-04-28

    Although Australia has no Beamed Energy Propulsion programs at the present time, it is accomplishing significant scientific and technological activity that is of potential relevance to Beamed Energy Propulsion (BEP). These activities include: continual upgrading and enhancement of the Woomera Test Facility, Which is ideal for development and test of high power laser or microwave systems and the flight vehicles they would propel; collaborative development and test, with the US and UK of hypersonic missiles that embody many features needed by beam-propelled flight vehicles; hypersonic air breathing propulsion systems that embody inlet-engine-nozzle features needed for beam-riding agility by air breathing craft; and research on specially conditioned EM fields that could reduce beamed energy lost during atmospheric propagation.

  16. Advanced transportation system studies. Alternate propulsion subsystem concepts: Propulsion database

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levack, Daniel

    1993-01-01

    The Advanced Transportation System Studies alternate propulsion subsystem concepts propulsion database interim report is presented. The objective of the database development task is to produce a propulsion database which is easy to use and modify while also being comprehensive in the level of detail available. The database is to be available on the Macintosh computer system. The task is to extend across all three years of the contract. Consequently, a significant fraction of the effort in this first year of the task was devoted to the development of the database structure to ensure a robust base for the following years' efforts. Nonetheless, significant point design propulsion system descriptions and parametric models were also produced. Each of the two propulsion databases, parametric propulsion database and propulsion system database, are described. The descriptions include a user's guide to each code, write-ups for models used, and sample output. The parametric database has models for LOX/H2 and LOX/RP liquid engines, solid rocket boosters using three different propellants, a hybrid rocket booster, and a NERVA derived nuclear thermal rocket engine.

  17. Magnetohydrodynamic Augmented Propulsion Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, Ron J.; Cole, John; Lineberry, John; Chapman, Jim; Schmidt, Harold; Cook, Stephen (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    A fundamental obstacle to routine space access is the specific energy limitations associated with chemical fuels. In the case of vertical take-off, the high thrust needed for vertical liftoff and acceleration to orbit translates into power levels in the 10 GW range. Furthermore, useful payload mass fractions are possible only if the exhaust particle energy (i.e., exhaust velocity) is much greater than that available with traditional chemical propulsion. The electronic binding energy released by the best chemical reactions (e.g., LOX/LH2 for example, is less than 2 eV per product molecule (approx. 1.8 eV per H2O molecule), which translates into particle velocities less than 5 km/s. Useful payload fractions, however, will require exhaust velocities exceeding 15 km/s (i.e., particle energies greater than 20 eV). As an added challenge, the envisioned hypothetical RLV (reusable launch vehicle) should accomplish these amazing performance feats while providing relatively low acceleration levels to orbit (2-3g maximum). From such fundamental considerations, it is painfully obvious that planned and current RLV solutions based on chemical fuels alone represent only a temporary solution and can only result in minor gains, at best. What is truly needed is a revolutionary approach that will dramatically reduce the amount of fuel and size of the launch vehicle. This implies the need for new compact high-power energy sources as well as advanced accelerator technologies for increasing engine exhaust velocity. Electromagnetic acceleration techniques are of immense interest since they can be used to circumvent the thermal limits associated with conventional propulsion systems. This paper describes the Magnetohydrodynamic Augmented Propulsion Experiment (MAPX) being undertaken at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). In this experiment, a 1-MW arc heater is being used as a feeder for a 1-MW magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) accelerator. The purpose of the experiment is to demonstrate

  18. Anatomy of Nanoscale Propulsion.

    PubMed

    Yadav, Vinita; Duan, Wentao; Butler, Peter J; Sen, Ayusman

    2015-01-01

    Nature supports multifaceted forms of life. Despite the variety and complexity of these forms, motility remains the epicenter of life. The applicable laws of physics change upon going from macroscales to microscales and nanoscales, which are characterized by low Reynolds number (Re). We discuss motion at low Re in natural and synthetic systems, along with various propulsion mechanisms, including electrophoresis, electrolyte diffusiophoresis, and nonelectrolyte diffusiophoresis. We also describe the newly uncovered phenomena of motility in non-ATP-driven self-powered enzymes and the directional movement of these enzymes in response to substrate gradients. These enzymes can also be immobilized to function as fluid pumps in response to the presence of their substrates. Finally, we review emergent collective behavior arising from interacting motile species, and we discuss the possible biomedical applications of the synthetic nanobots and microbots.

  19. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.; Pivirotto, Thomas J.; Polk, James E.

    1992-01-01

    The work performed in fiscal year (FY) 1991 under the Propulsion Technology Program RTOP (Research and Technology Objectives and Plans) No. (55) 506-42-31 for Low-Thrust Primary and Auxiliary Propulsion technology development is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with the development of ion engines for primary propulsion in support of solar system exploration. The second with the advancement of steady-state magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thruster technology at 100 kW to multimegawatt input power levels. The major technology issues for ion propulsion are demonstration of adequate engine life at the 5 to 10 kW power level and scaling ion engines to power levels of tens to hundreds of kilowatts. Tests of a new technique in which the decelerator grid of a three-grid ion accelerator system is biased negative of neutralizer common potential in order to collect facility induced charge-exchange ions are described. These tests indicate that this SAND (Screen, Accelerator, Negative Decelerator) configuration may enable long duration ion engine endurance tests to be performed at vacuum chamber pressures an order of magnitude higher than previously possible. The corresponding reduction in pumping speed requirements enables endurance tests of 10 kW class ion engines to be performed within the resources of existing technology programs. The results of a successful 5,000-hr endurance of a xenon hollow cathode operating at an emission current of 25 A are described, as well as the initial tests of hollow cathodes operating on a mixture of argon and 3 percent nitrogen. Work performed on the development of carbon/carbon grids, a multi-orifice hollow cathode, and discharge chamber erosion reduction through the addition of nitrogen are also described. Critical applied-field MPD thruster technical issues remain to be resolved, including demonstration of reliable steady-state operation at input powers of hundreds to thousands of

  20. Magnetohydrodynamic Augmented Propulsion Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Litchford, Ron J.

    2008-01-01

    Over the past several years, efforts have been under way to design and develop an operationally flexible research facility for investigating the use of cross-field MHD accelerators as a potential thrust augmentation device for thermal propulsion systems. The baseline configuration for this high-power experimental facility utilizes a 1.5-MWe multi-gas arc-heater as a thermal driver for a 2-MWe MHD accelerator, which resides in a large-bore 2-tesla electromagnet. A preliminary design study using NaK seeded nitrogen as the working fluid led to an externally diagonalized segmented MHD channel configuration based on an expendable heat-sink design concept. The current status report includes a review of engineering/design work and performance optimization analyses and summarizes component hardware fabrication and development efforts, preliminary testing results, and recent progress toward full-up assembly and testing

  1. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.; Pivirotto, Thomas J.; Polk, James E.

    1992-11-01

    The work performed in fiscal year (FY) 1991 under the Propulsion Technology Program RTOP (Research and Technology Objectives and Plans) No. (55) 506-42-31 for Low-Thrust Primary and Auxiliary Propulsion technology development is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with the development of ion engines for primary propulsion in support of solar system exploration. The second with the advancement of steady-state magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) thruster technology at 100 kW to multimegawatt input power levels. The major technology issues for ion propulsion are demonstration of adequate engine life at the 5 to 10 kW power level and scaling ion engines to power levels of tens to hundreds of kilowatts. Tests of a new technique in which the decelerator grid of a three-grid ion accelerator system is biased negative of neutralizer common potential in order to collect facility induced charge-exchange ions are described. These tests indicate that this SAND (Screen, Accelerator, Negative Decelerator) configuration may enable long duration ion engine endurance tests to be performed at vacuum chamber pressures an order of magnitude higher than previously possible. The corresponding reduction in pumping speed requirements enables endurance tests of 10 kW class ion engines to be performed within the resources of existing technology programs. The results of a successful 5,000-hr endurance of a xenon hollow cathode operating at an emission current of 25 A are described, as well as the initial tests of hollow cathodes operating on a mixture of argon and 3 percent nitrogen. Work performed on the development of carbon/carbon grids, a multi-orifice hollow cathode, and discharge chamber erosion reduction through the addition of nitrogen are also described. Critical applied-field MPD thruster technical issues remain to be resolved, including demonstration of reliable steady-state operation at input powers of hundreds to thousands of

  2. Space station propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Robert E.; Morren, W. Earl; Sovey, James S.; Tacina, Robert R.

    1987-01-01

    Two propulsion systems have been selected for the space station: gaseous H/O rockets for high thrust applications and the multipropellant resistojets for low thrust needs. These two thruster systems integrate very well with the fluid systems on the space station, utilizing waste fluids as their source of propellant. The H/O rocket will be fueled by electrolyzed water and the resistojets will use waste gases collected from the environmental control system and the various laboratories. The results are presented of experimental efforts with H/O and resistojet thrusters to determine their performance and life capability, as well as results of studies to determine the availability of water and waste gases.

  3. Instellar Exploration: Propulsion Options for Precursors and Beyond

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Charles Les; Leifer, Stephanie

    1999-01-01

    NASA is considering a mission to explore near-interstellar space early in the next decade as the first step toward a vigorous interstellar exploration program. A key enabling technology for such an ambitious science and exploration effort is the development of propulsion systems capable of providing fast trip times; mission duration should not exceed the professional lifetime of the investigative team. Advanced propulsion technologies that might support an interstellar precursor mission early in the next century include some combination of solar sails, nuclear electric propulsion systems, and aerogravity assists. Follow-on missions to far beyond the heliopause will require the development of propulsion technologies that are only at the conceptual stage today. These include 1) matter-antimatter annihilation, 2) beamed-energy sails, and 3) fusion systems. For years, the scientific community has been interested in the development of solar sail technology to support exploration of the inner and outer planets. Progress in thin-film technology and the development of technologies that may enable the remote assembly of large sails in space are only now maturing to the point where ambitious interstellar precursor missions can be considered. Electric propulsion is now being demonstrated for planetary exploration by the Deep Space 1 mission. The primary issues for it's adaptation to interstellar precursor applications include the nuclear reactor that would be required and the engine lifetime. For further term interstellar missions, matter-antimatter annihilation propulsion system concepts have the highest energy density of any propulsion systems using onboard propellants. However, there are numerous challenges to production and storage of antimatter that must be overcome before it can be seriously considered for interstellar flight. Off-board energy systems (laser sails) are candidates for long-distance interstellar flight but development of component technologies and

  4. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. This photograph, taken at MSFC's Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility, shows a concentrator mirror, a combination of 144 mirrors forming this 18-ft diameter concentrator, and a vacuum chamber that houses the focal point. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-foot diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth-orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  5. Control of cardiorespiratory function in response to hypoxia in an air-breathing fish, the African sharptooth catfish, Clarias gariepinus.

    PubMed

    Belão, T C; Zeraik, V M; Florindo, L H; Kalinin, A L; Leite, C A C; Rantin, F T

    2015-09-01

    We evaluated the role of the first pair of gill arches in the control of cardiorespiratory responses to normoxia and hypoxia in the air-breathing catfish, Clarias gariepinus. An intact group (IG) and an experimental group (EG, bilateral excision of first gill arch) were submitted to graded hypoxia, with and without access to air. The first pair of gill arches ablations reduced respiratory surface area and removed innervation by cranial nerve IX. In graded hypoxia without access to air, both groups displayed bradycardia and increased ventilatory stroke volume (VT), and the IG showed a significant increase in breathing frequency (fR). The EG exhibited very high fR in normoxia that did not increase further in hypoxia, this was linked to reduced O2 extraction from the ventilatory current (EO2) and a significantly higher critical O2 tension (PcO2) than the IG. In hypoxia with access to air, only the IG showed increased air-breathing, indicating that the first pair of gill arches excision severely attenuated air-breathing responses. Both groups exhibited bradycardia before and tachycardia after air-breaths. The fH and gill ventilation amplitude (VAMP) in the EG were overall higher than the IG. External and internal NaCN injections revealed that O2 chemoreceptors mediating ventilatory hypoxic responses (fR and VT) are internally oriented. The NaCN injections indicated that fR responses were mediated by receptors predominantly in the first pair of gill arches but VT responses by receptors on all gill arches. Receptors eliciting cardiac responses were both internally and externally oriented and distributed on all gill arches or extra-branchially. Air-breathing responses were predominantly mediated by receptors in the first pair of gill arches. In conclusion, the role of the first pair of gill arches is related to: (a) an elevated EO2 providing an adequate O2 uptake to maintain the aerobic metabolism during normoxia; (b) a significant bradycardia and increased fAB elicited

  6. Enabling Electric Propulsion for Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ginn, Starr Renee

    2015-01-01

    Team Seedling project AFRC and LaRC 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing on truck bed up 75 miles per hour for coefficient of lift validation. Convergent Aeronautic Solutions project, sub-project Convergent Electric Propulsion Technologies AFRC, LaRC and GRC, re-winging a 4 passenger Tecnam aircraft with a 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing. Advanced Air Transport Technologies (Fixed Wing), Hybrid Electric Research Theme, developing a series hybrid ironbird and flight sim to study integration and performance challenges in preparation for a 1-2 MW flight project.

  7. NASA research in aircraft propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beheim, M. A.

    1982-01-01

    A broad overview of the scope of research presently being supported by NASA in aircraft propulsion is presented with emphasis on Lewis Research Center activities related to civil air transports, CTOL and V/STOL systems. Aircraft systems work is performed to identify the requirements for the propulsion system that enhance the mission capabilities of the aircraft. This important source of innovation and creativity drives the direction of propulsion research. In a companion effort, component research of a generic nature is performed to provide a better basis for design and provides an evolutionary process for technological growth that increases the capabilities of all types of aircraft. Both are important.

  8. Advanced Space Fission Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Borowski, Stanley K.

    2010-01-01

    Fission has been considered for in-space propulsion since the 1940s. Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) systems underwent extensive development from 1955-1973, completing 20 full power ground tests and achieving specific impulses nearly twice that of the best chemical propulsion systems. Space fission power systems (which may eventually enable Nuclear Electric Propulsion) have been flown in space by both the United States and the Former Soviet Union. Fission is the most developed and understood of the nuclear propulsion options (e.g. fission, fusion, antimatter, etc.), and fission has enjoyed tremendous terrestrial success for nearly 7 decades. Current space nuclear research and technology efforts are focused on devising and developing first generation systems that are safe, reliable and affordable. For propulsion, the focus is on nuclear thermal rockets that build on technologies and systems developed and tested under the Rover/NERVA and related programs from the Apollo era. NTP Affordability is achieved through use of previously developed fuels and materials, modern analytical techniques and test strategies, and development of a small engine for ground and flight technology demonstration. Initial NTP systems will be capable of achieving an Isp of 900 s at a relatively high thrust-to-weight ratio. The development and use of first generation space fission power and propulsion systems will provide new, game changing capabilities for NASA. In addition, development and use of these systems will provide the foundation for developing extremely advanced power and propulsion systems capable of routinely and affordably accessing any point in the solar system. The energy density of fissile fuel (8 x 10(exp 13) Joules/kg) is more than adequate for enabling extensive exploration and utilization of the solar system. For space fission propulsion systems, the key is converting the virtually unlimited energy of fission into thrust at the desired specific impulse and thrust

  9. Enabling Electric Propulsion for Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ginn, Starr

    2014-01-01

    Description of current ARMD projects; Team Seedling project AFRC and LaRC 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing on truck bed up 75 miles per hour for coefficient of lift validation. Convergent Aeronautic Solutions project (new ARMD reorg), sub-project Convergent Electric Propulsion Technologies AFRC, LaRC and GRC, re-winging a 4 passenger Tecnam aircraft with a 31ft distributed electric propulsion wing. Advanced Air Transport Technologies (Fixed Wing), Hybrid Electric Research Theme, developing a series hybrid ironbird and flight sim to study integration and performance challenges in preparation for a 1-2 MW flight project.

  10. Manrating orbital transfer vehicle propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1985-01-01

    The expended capabilities for Orbital Transfer Vehicles (OTV) which will be needed to meet increased payload requirements for transporting materials and men to geosynchronous orbit are discussed. The requirement to provide manrating offers challenges and opportunities to the propulsion system designers. The propulsion approaches utilized in previous manned space vehicles of the United States are reviewed. The principals of reliability analysis are applied to the Orbit Transfer Vehicle. Propulsion system options are characterized in terms of the test requirements to demonstrate reliability goals and are compared to earlier vehicle approaches.

  11. NASA's Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Mitchell, Doyce P.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Clement, Steven; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John; Power, Kevin P.

    2015-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation NTP system could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of a first generation NTP in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC- 3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progress made under the NTP project could also help enable high performance fission power systems and Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  12. MSFC Nuclear Propulsion Materials Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rogers, J. R.; Cook, B.

    2004-01-01

    Nuclear propulsion systems for spacecraft applications present numerous technical challenges for propulsion systems. They have been the focus of a recent NRA. Challenges inclue: a nuclear reactor subsystem to produce thermal energy; a power conversion subsystem to convert the thermal energy into electrical energy; a propulsion subsystem that utilizes Hall effect thrusters; thruster technologies and high temperature materials to support subsystems. The MSFC Electrostatic Levitation (ESL) Facility provides an ideal platform for the study of high temperature and reactive materials. An overview of the facility and its capabilities will be presented.

  13. [Lasers].

    PubMed

    Passeron, T

    2012-11-01

    Lasers are a very effective approach for treating many hyperpigmented lesions. They are the gold standard treatment for actinic lentigos and dermal hypermelanocytosis, such as Ota nevus. Becker nevus, hyperpigmented mosaicisms, and lentigines can also be successfully treated with lasers, but they could be less effective and relapses can be observed. However, lasers cannot be proposed for all types of hyperpigmentation. Thus, freckles and café-au-lait macules should not be treated as the relapses are nearly constant. Due to its complex pathophysiology, melasma has a special place in hyperpigmented dermatoses. Q-switched lasers (using standard parameters or low fluency) should not be used because of consistent relapses and the high risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Paradoxically, targeting the vascular component of the melasma lesion with lasers could have a beneficial effect. However, these results have yet to be confirmed. In all cases, a precise diagnosis of the type of hyperpigmentation is mandatory before any laser treatment, and the limits and the potential side effects of the treatment must be clearly explained to patients.

  14. Lasers.

    PubMed

    Passeron, T

    2012-12-01

    Lasers are a very effective approach for treating many hyperpigmented lesions. They are the gold standard treatment for actinic lentigos and dermal hypermelanocytosis, such as Ota nevus. Becker nevus, hyperpigmented mosaicisms, and lentigines can also be successfully treated with lasers, but they could be less effective and relapses can be observed. However, lasers cannot be proposed for all types of hyperpigmentation. Thus, freckles and café-au-lait macules should not be treated as the relapses are nearly constant. Due to its complex pathophysiology, melasma has a special place in hyperpigmented dermatoses. Q-switched lasers (using standard parameters or low fluency) should not be used because of consistent relapses and the high risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Paradoxically, targeting the vascular component of the melasma lesion with lasers could have a beneficial effect. However, these results have yet to be confirmed. In all cases, a precise diagnosis of the type of hyperpigmentation is mandatory before any laser treatment, and the limits and the potential side effects of the treatment must be clearly explained to patients.

  15. Anoxia and Acidosis Tolerance of the Heart in an Air-Breathing Fish (Pangasianodon hypophthalmus).

    PubMed

    Joyce, William; Gesser, Hans; Bayley, Mark; Wang, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Air breathing has evolved repeatedly in fishes and may protect the heart during stress. We investigated myocardial performance in the air-breathing catfish Pangasianodon hypophthalmus, a species that can withstand prolonged exposure to severe hypoxia and acidosis. Isometric ventricular preparations were exposed to anoxia, lactic acidosis, hypercapnic acidosis, and combinations of these treatments. Ventricular preparations were remarkably tolerant to anoxia, exhibiting an inotropic reduction of only 40%, which fully recovered during reoxygenation. Myocardial anoxia tolerance was unaffected by physiologically relevant elevations of bicarbonate concentration, in contrast to previous results in other fishes. Both lactic acidosis (5 mM; pH 7.10) and hypercapnic acidosis (10% CO2; pH 6.70) elicited a biphasic response, with an initial and transient decrease in force followed by overcompensation above control values. Spongy myocardial preparations were significantly more tolerant to hypercapnic acidosis than compact myocardial preparations. While ventricular preparations were tolerant to the isolated effects of anoxia and acidosis, their combination severely impaired myocardial performance and contraction kinetics. This suggests that air breathing may be a particularly important myocardial oxygen source during combined anoxia and acidosis, which may occur during exercise or environmental stress. PMID:26658412

  16. Navier-Stokes predictions of dynamic stability derivatives for air-breathing hypersonic vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xu; Liu, Wei; Zhao, Yunfei

    2016-01-01

    Dynamic derivatives are important parameters for designing vehicle trajectory and attitude control system that directly decide the divergence behavior of vibration of the aircraft open-loop system under interference. After calibration model validation, the dynamic behavior of air-breathing hypersonic vehicle WR-A is characterized. The unsteady flow field of aircraft forced simple harmonic vibration (SHV) is simulated using N-S equation. The direct damping derivatives, cross derivatives, acceleration derivatives and rotary derivatives of WR-A under different frequencies, amplitudes and positions of centroid are obtained. Research demonstrates that the proportion of acceleration derivatives, which represents the flow time lag effect, in the direct damping derivatives can be as high as 40% but is opposite to the damping derivative value symbols in some cases, contributing to dynamic instability. Numerical simulation on large-amplitude forced vibration of WR-A indicates that the aerodynamic behavior predicted by the dynamic derivative model agrees well with unsteady calculations. The inlet performance parameter derivatives are solved using the Etkin theory. The inlet performance parameters under large-amplitude vibration are successfully predicted using the dynamic derivative model. This offers a guideline for characterizing the dynamic internal flow field and unsteady inlet performance.

  17. Uncertainty analysis and robust trajectory linearization control of a flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Zhiqiang; Tan, Xiangmin; Fan, Guoliang; Yi, Jianqiang

    2014-08-01

    Flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicles feature significant uncertainties which pose huge challenges to robust controller designs. In this paper, four major categories of uncertainties are analyzed, that is, uncertainties associated with flexible effects, aerodynamic parameter variations, external environmental disturbances, and control-oriented modeling errors. A uniform nonlinear uncertainty model is explored for the first three uncertainties which lumps all uncertainties together and consequently is beneficial for controller synthesis. The fourth uncertainty is additionally considered in stability analysis. Based on these analyses, the starting point of the control design is to decompose the vehicle dynamics into five functional subsystems. Then a robust trajectory linearization control (TLC) scheme consisting of five robust subsystem controllers is proposed. In each subsystem controller, TLC is combined with the extended state observer (ESO) technique for uncertainty compensation. The stability of the overall closed-loop system with the four aforementioned uncertainties and additional singular perturbations is analyzed. Particularly, the stability of nonlinear ESO is also discussed from a Liénard system perspective. At last, simulations demonstrate the great control performance and the uncertainty rejection ability of the robust scheme.

  18. Migration history of air-breathing fishes reveals Neogene atmospheric circulation patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böhme, M.

    2004-05-01

    The migration history of an air-breathing fish group (Channidae; snakehead fishes) is used for reconstructing Neogene Eurasian precipitation and atmospheric circulation patterns. The study shows that snakeheads are sensitive indicators of summer precipitation maxima in subtropical and temperate regions, and are present regularly if the wettest month exceeds 150 mm precipitation and 20 °C mean temperature. The analysis of 515 fossil freshwater fish deposits of the past 50 m.y. from Africa and Eurasia shows two continental-scale migration events from the snakeheads' center of origin in the south Himalayan region, events that can be related to changes in the Northern Hemisphere circulation pattern. The first migration, ca. 17.5 Ma, into western and central Eurasia may have been caused by a northward shift of the Intertropical Convergence Zone that brought western Eurasia under the influence of trade winds that produced a zonal and meridional precipitation gradient in Europe. During the second migration, between 8 and 4 Ma, into Africa and East Asia, snakeheads reached their present-day distribution. This migration could have been related to the intensification of the Asian monsoon that brought summer precipitation to their migratory pathways in East Africa Arabia and East Asia.

  19. Air-breathing direct formic acid microfluidic fuel cell with an array of cylinder anodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Xun; Zhang, Biao; Ye, Ding-Ding; Li, Jun; Liao, Qiang

    2014-02-01

    An air-breathing direct formic acid membraneless microfluidic fuel cell using graphite cylinder arrays as the anode is proposed. The three dimensional anode volumetrically extends the reactive surface area and improves fuel utilization. The effects of spacer configuration, fuel and electrolyte concentration as well as reactant flow rate on the species transport and cell performance are investigated. The dynamic behavior of generated CO2 bubbles is visualized and its effect on current generation is discussed. The results show that the absence of two spacers adjacent to the cathode surface improves the cell performance by reducing the proton transfer resistance. The CO2 gas bubbles are constrained within the anode array and expelled by the fluid flow periodically. Proper reactant concentration and flow rate are crucial for cell operation. At optimum conditions, a maximum current density of 118.3 mA cm-3 and a peak power density of 21.5 mW cm-3 are obtained. In addition, benefit from the volumetrically stacked anodes and enhanced fuel transfer, the maximum single pass fuel utilization rate reaches up to 87.6% at the flow rate of 1 mL h-1.

  20. Computational modeling of alkaline air-breathing microfluidic fuel cells with an array of cylinder anodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ye, Ding-Ding; Zhang, Biao; Zhu, Xun; Sui, Pang-Chieh; Djilali, Ned; Liao, Qiang

    2015-08-01

    A three-dimensional computational model is developed for an alkaline air-breathing microfluidic fuel cell (AMFC) with an array of cylinder anodes. The model is validated against experimental data from an in-house prototype AMFC. The distributions of fluid velocity, fuel concentration and current density of the fuel cell are analyzed in detail. The effect of reactant flow rate on the cell performance and electrode potentials is also studied. The model results suggest that fuel crossover is minimized by the fast electrolyte flow in the vicinity of the cathode. The current production of each anode is uneven and is well correlated with internal ohmic resistance. Fuel transfer limitation occurs at low flow rates (<100 μL min-1) but diminishes at high flow rates. The model results also indicate that cathode potential reversal takes place at combined low flow rate and high current density conditions, mainly due to the improved overpotential downstream where fuel starvation occurs. The anode reaction current distribution is found to be relatively uniform, which is a result of a compensating mechanism that improves the current production of the bottom anodes downstream.

  1. Cardiovascular anatomy and cardiac function in the air-breathing swamp eel (Monopterus albus).

    PubMed

    Iversen, Nina K; Lauridsen, Henrik; Do, Thi Thanh Huong; Nguyen, Van Cong; Gesser, Hans; Buchanan, Rasmus; Bayley, Mark; Pedersen, Michael; Wang, Tobias

    2013-01-01

    Monopterus albus, a swamp eel inhabiting the freshwaters of South East Asia, relies on an extensive vascularisation of the buccal cavity, pharynx and anterior oesophagus for gas exchange, while the gills are much reduced. In the present study we describe the macro-circulation in the cephalic region and the vascularisation of the buccal cavity of M. albus using vascular fillings and micro-computed tomography (μCT). We also show that M. albus has the capacity to use the buccal cavity for aquatic gas exchange, being able to maintain normal arterial blood gas composition, blood pressure, heart rate and cardiac output throughout 10h of forced submergence. M. albus therefore can be characterised as a facultative air-breather. Because M. albus aestivates for many months in moist mud during the dry season we characterised in vivo cardiovascular function during exposure to anoxia as well as the effects of anoxia on in vitro contractility of strip preparations from atria and ventricle. Both studies revealed a low anoxia tolerance, rendering it unlikely that M. albus can survive prolonged exposure to anoxia.

  2. Electric propulsion system technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brophy, John R.; Garner, Charles E.; Goodfellow, Keith D.

    1991-01-01

    The work performed on the Ion Propulsion System Technology Task in FY90 is described. The objectives of this work fall under two broad categories. The first of these deals with issues associated with the application of xenon ion thrusters for primary propulsion of planetary spacecraft, and the second with the investigation of technologies which will facilitate the development of larger, higher power ion thrusters to support more advanced mission applications. Most of the effort was devoted to investigation of the critical issues associated with the use of ion thrusters for planetary spacecraft. These issues may be succinctly referred to as life time, system integration, and throttling. Chief among these is the engine life time. If the engines do not have sufficient life to perform the missions of interest, then the other issues become unimportant. Ion engine life time was investigated through two experimental programs: an investigation into the reduction of ion engine internal sputter erosion through the addition of small quantities of nitrogen, and a long duration cathode life test. In addition, a literature review and analysis of accelerator grid erosion were performed. The nitrogen addition tests indicated that the addition of between 0.5 and 1.0 percent of nitrogen by mass to the xenon propellant results in a reduction in the sputter erosion of discharge chamber components by a factor of between 20 and 50, with negligible reduction in thruster performance. The long duration test of a 6.35-mm dia. xenon hollow cathode is still in progress, and has accumulated more than 4,000 hours of operation at an emission current of 25 A at the time of this writing. One of the major system integration issues concerns possible interactions of the ion thruster produced charge exchange plasma with the spacecraft. A computer model originally developed to describe the behavior of mercury ion thruster charge exchange plasmas was resurrected and modified for xenon propellant. This

  3. Nuclear pumped gas laser research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thom, K.

    1976-01-01

    Nuclear pumping of lasers by fission-fragments from nuclear chain reactions is discussed. Application of the newly developed lasers to spacecraft propulsion or onboard power, to lunar bases for industrial processing, and to earth for utilization of power without pollution and hazards is envisioned. Emphasis is placed on the process by which the fission-fragement kinetic energy is converted into laser light.

  4. Microthrust Propulsion of the LISA Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ziemer, John K.; Merkowitz, Stephen M.

    2004-01-01

    We present the most recent propulsion requirements for the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) Mission and describe potential microth ruster technology that can meet these requirements. LISA consists of three spacecraft in heliocentric orbits, forming a triangle with 5x l 0 (exp 6) km sides that are the arms of three Michelson-type interferometers. Reflective proof masses provide the reference surfaces at the end of the interferometer arms as part of the Gravitational Referenc e Sensor (GRS) designed to detect gravitational waves. The microthrus t propulsion system will be part of the Disturbance Reduction System (DRS), which is responsible for maintaining each spacecraft position w ithin approximately 10 nm around the proof masses. To provide the nec essary sensitivity, the GRS must not experience spurious acceleration s >15 (exp -10) m/ s(exp 2) in the 0.1 mHz to 1 Hz bandwidth, requiring precision formation flying and drag-free operation of the LISA spa cecraft. This leads to the following microthruster performance requir ements: a thrust range of 2-30 Micro N, a thrust resolution < 0.1 Mic ro N, and thrust noise <0.1 Hz(exp -1/2) over the LISA measurement bandwidth. The microthruster must provide this performance for 5 years c ontinuously, contain 10 years worth of propellant, and not disrupt th e science measurements. Potential microthruster technologies include Colloid, Field Emission Electric Propulsion (FEEP), and precision cold gas microthrusters. Each of these technologies is described in detai l with focus on the NASA microthruster development of the Busek Collo id Micro-Newton Thruster (CMNT).

  5. Emerging Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonometti, J. A.

    2004-11-01

    The Emerging Propulsion Technologies (EPT) technology area is a branch of the In-Space Program that serves as a bridge to bring high-risk/high-payoff technologies to a higher level of maturity. Emerging technologies are innovative and, if successfully developed, could result in revolutionary science capabilities for NASA science missions. EPT is also charged with the responsibility of assessing the technology readiness level (TRL) of technologies under consideration for inclusion in the ISP portfolio. One such technology is the Momentum-eXchange/Electrodynamic Reboost (MXER) tether concept, which is the current, primary investment of EPT. The MXER tether is a long, rotating cable placed in an elliptical Earth orbit, whose rapid rotation allows its tip to catch a payload in a low Earth orbit and throw that payload to a high-energy orbit. Electrodynamic tether propulsion is used to restore the orbital energy transferred by the MXER tether to the payload and reboost the tether's orbit. This technique uses solar power to drive electrical current collected from the Earth's ionosphere through the tether, resulting in a magnetic interaction with the terrestrial field. Since the Earth itself serves as the reaction mass, the thrust force is generated without propellant and allows the MXER facility to be repeatedly reused without re-supply. Essentially, the MXER facility is a 'propellantless' upper stage that could assist nearly every mission going beyond low Earth orbit. Payloads to interplanetary destinations could especially benefit from the boost provided by the MXER facility, resulting in launch vehicle cost reductions, increased payload fractions and more frequent mission opportunities. Synergistic tether technologies resulting from MXER development could include science sampling in the upper atmosphere, remote probes or attached formation flying, artificial gravity experiments with low Coriolis forces, and other science needs that use long, ultra-light strength or

  6. Environmental benefits of chemical propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hayes, Joyce A.; Goldberg, Benjamin E.; Anderson, David M.

    1995-01-01

    This paper identifies the necessity of chemical propulsion to satellite usage and some of the benefits accrued through monitoring global resources and patterns, including the Global Climate Change Model (GCM). The paper also summarized how the satellite observations are used to affect national and international policies. Chemical propulsion, like all environmentally conscious industries, does provide limited, controlled pollutant sources through its manufacture and usage. However, chemical propulsion is the sole source which enables mankind to launch spacecraft and monitor the Earth. The information provided by remote sensing directly affects national and international policies designed to protect the environment and enhance the overall quality of life on Earth. The resultant of chemical propulsion is the capability to reduce overall pollutant emissions to the benefit of mankind.

  7. Environmental benefits of chemical propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Hayes, J.A.; Goldberg, B.E.; Anderson, D.M.

    1995-03-01

    This paper identifies the necessity of chemical propulsion to satellite usage and some of the benefits accrued through monitoring global resources and patterns, including the Global Climate Change Model (GCM). The paper also summarized how the satellite observations are used to affect national and international policies. Chemical propulsion, like all environmentally conscious industries, does provide limited, controlled pollutant sources through its manufacture and usage. However, chemical propulsion is the sole source which enables mankind to launch spacecraft and monitor the Earth. The information provided by remote sensing directly affects national and international policies designed to protect the environment and enhance the overall quality of life on Earth. The resultant of chemical propulsion is the capability to reduce overall pollutant emissions to the benefit of mankind.

  8. The Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Michael G.; Kim, Tony; Emrich, William J.; Hickman, Robert R.; Broadway, Jeramie W.; Gerrish, Harold P.; Doughty, Glen; Belvin, Anthony; Borowski, Stanley K.; Scott, John

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental capability of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) is game changing for space exploration. A first generation Nuclear Cryogenic Propulsion Stage (NCPS) based on NTP could provide high thrust at a specific impulse above 900 s, roughly double that of state of the art chemical engines. Characteristics of fission and NTP indicate that useful first generation systems will provide a foundation for future systems with extremely high performance. The role of the NCPS in the development of advanced nuclear propulsion systems could be analogous to the role of the DC-3 in the development of advanced aviation. Progres made under the NCPS project could help enable both advanced NTP and advanced Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP).

  9. Vehicle Integrated Propulsion Research Tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lekki, John D.; Hunter, Gary W.; Simon, Don; Meredith, Roger; Wrbanek, John; Woike, Mark; Tokars, Roger; Guffanti, Marianne; Lyall, Eric

    2013-01-01

    Overview of the Vehicle Integrated Propulsion Research Tests in the Vehicle Systems Safety Technologies project. This overview covers highlights of the completed VIPR I and VIPR II tests and also covers plans for the VIPR III test.

  10. Trajectory correction propulsion for TOPS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Long, H. R.; Bjorklund, R. A.

    1972-01-01

    A blowdown-pressurized hydrazine propulsion system was selected to provide trajectory correction impulse for outer planet flyby spacecraft as the result of cost/mass/reliability tradeoff analyses. Present hydrazine component and system technology and component designs were evaluated for application to the Thermoelectric Outer Planet Spacecraft (TOPS); while general hydrazine technology was adequate, component design changes were deemed necessary for TOPS-type missions. A prototype hydrazine propulsion system was fabricated and fired nine times for a total of 1600 s to demonstrate the operation and performance of the TOPS propulsion configuration. A flight-weight trajectory correction propulsion subsystem (TCPS) was designed for the TOPS based on actual and estimated advanced components.

  11. Developmental transcriptome analysis and identification of genes involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function of Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus.

    PubMed

    Luo, Weiwei; Cao, Xiaojuan; Xu, Xiuwen; Huang, Songqian; Liu, Chuanshu; Tomljanovic, Tea

    2016-01-01

    Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus is a freshwater fish species of the loach family Cobitidae, using its posterior intestine as an accessory air-breathing organ. Little is known about the molecular regulatory mechanisms in the formation of intestinal air-breathing function of M. anguillicaudatus. Here high-throughput sequencing of mRNAs was performed from six developmental stages of posterior intestine of M. anguillicaudatus: 4-Dph (days post hatch) group, 8-Dph group, 12-Dph group, 20-Dph group, 40-Dph group and Oyd (one-year-old) group. These six libraries were assembled into 81300 unigenes. Totally 40757 unigenes were annotated. Subsequently, 35291 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were scanned among different developmental stages and clustered into 20 gene expression profiles. Finally, 15 key pathways and 25 key genes were mined, providing potential targets for candidate gene selection involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function in M. anguillicaudatus. This is the first report of developmental transcriptome of posterior intestine in M. anguillicaudatus, offering a substantial contribution to the sequence resources for this species and providing a deep insight into the formation mechanism of its intestinal air-breathing function. This report demonstrates that M. anguillicaudatus is a good model for studies to identify and characterize the molecular basis of accessory air-breathing organ development in fish. PMID:27545457

  12. Developmental transcriptome analysis and identification of genes involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function of Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Weiwei; Cao, Xiaojuan; Xu, Xiuwen; Huang, Songqian; Liu, Chuanshu; Tomljanovic, Tea

    2016-01-01

    Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus is a freshwater fish species of the loach family Cobitidae, using its posterior intestine as an accessory air-breathing organ. Little is known about the molecular regulatory mechanisms in the formation of intestinal air-breathing function of M. anguillicaudatus. Here high-throughput sequencing of mRNAs was performed from six developmental stages of posterior intestine of M. anguillicaudatus: 4-Dph (days post hatch) group, 8-Dph group, 12-Dph group, 20-Dph group, 40-Dph group and Oyd (one-year-old) group. These six libraries were assembled into 81300 unigenes. Totally 40757 unigenes were annotated. Subsequently, 35291 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were scanned among different developmental stages and clustered into 20 gene expression profiles. Finally, 15 key pathways and 25 key genes were mined, providing potential targets for candidate gene selection involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function in M. anguillicaudatus. This is the first report of developmental transcriptome of posterior intestine in M. anguillicaudatus, offering a substantial contribution to the sequence resources for this species and providing a deep insight into the formation mechanism of its intestinal air-breathing function. This report demonstrates that M. anguillicaudatus is a good model for studies to identify and characterize the molecular basis of accessory air-breathing organ development in fish. PMID:27545457

  13. High-Throughput Sequencing Identifies MicroRNAs from Posterior Intestine of Loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) and Their Response to Intestinal Air-Breathing Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Huang, Songqian; Cao, Xiaojuan; Tian, Xianchang; Wang, Weimin

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) exert important roles in animal growth, immunity, and development, and regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Knowledges about the diversities of miRNAs and their roles in accessory air-breathing organs (ABOs) of fish remain unknown. In this work, we used high-throughput sequencing to identify known and novel miRNAs from the posterior intestine, an important ABO, in loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) under normal and intestinal air-breathing inhibited conditions. A total of 204 known and 84 novel miRNAs were identified, while 47 miRNAs were differentially expressed between the two small RNA libraries (i.e. between the normal and intestinal air-breathing inhibited group). Potential miRNA target genes were predicted by combining our transcriptome data of the posterior intestine of the loach under the same conditions, and then annotated using COG, GO, KEGG, Swissprot and Nr databases. The regulatory networks of miRNAs and their target genes were analyzed. The abundances of nine known miRNAs were validated by qRT-PCR. The relative expression profiles of six known miRNAs and their eight corresponding target genes, and two novel potential miRNAs were also detected. Histological characteristics of the posterior intestines in both normal and air-breathing inhibited group were further analyzed. This study contributes to our understanding on the functions and molecular regulatory mechanisms of miRNAs in accessory air-breathing organs of fish.

  14. Developmental transcriptome analysis and identification of genes involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function of Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus.

    PubMed

    Luo, Weiwei; Cao, Xiaojuan; Xu, Xiuwen; Huang, Songqian; Liu, Chuanshu; Tomljanovic, Tea

    2016-08-22

    Dojo loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus is a freshwater fish species of the loach family Cobitidae, using its posterior intestine as an accessory air-breathing organ. Little is known about the molecular regulatory mechanisms in the formation of intestinal air-breathing function of M. anguillicaudatus. Here high-throughput sequencing of mRNAs was performed from six developmental stages of posterior intestine of M. anguillicaudatus: 4-Dph (days post hatch) group, 8-Dph group, 12-Dph group, 20-Dph group, 40-Dph group and Oyd (one-year-old) group. These six libraries were assembled into 81300 unigenes. Totally 40757 unigenes were annotated. Subsequently, 35291 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were scanned among different developmental stages and clustered into 20 gene expression profiles. Finally, 15 key pathways and 25 key genes were mined, providing potential targets for candidate gene selection involved in formation of intestinal air-breathing function in M. anguillicaudatus. This is the first report of developmental transcriptome of posterior intestine in M. anguillicaudatus, offering a substantial contribution to the sequence resources for this species and providing a deep insight into the formation mechanism of its intestinal air-breathing function. This report demonstrates that M. anguillicaudatus is a good model for studies to identify and characterize the molecular basis of accessory air-breathing organ development in fish.

  15. Nuclear Propulsion in Space (1968)

    SciTech Connect

    2012-06-23

    Project NERVA was an acronym for Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Application, a joint program of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission and NASA managed by the Space Nuclear Propulsion Office (SNPO) at the Nuclear Rocket Development Station in Jackass Flats, Nevada U.S.A. Between 1959 and 1972, the Space Nuclear Propulsion Office oversaw 23 reactor tests, both the program and the office ended at the end of 1972.

  16. Nuclear Propulsion in Space (1968)

    ScienceCinema

    None

    2016-07-12

    Project NERVA was an acronym for Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Application, a joint program of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission and NASA managed by the Space Nuclear Propulsion Office (SNPO) at the Nuclear Rocket Development Station in Jackass Flats, Nevada U.S.A. Between 1959 and 1972, the Space Nuclear Propulsion Office oversaw 23 reactor tests, both the program and the office ended at the end of 1972.

  17. Solar Thermal Propulsion Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. Solar thermal propulsion works by acquiring and redirecting solar energy to heat a propellant. This photograph shows a fully assembled solar thermal engine placed inside the vacuum chamber at the test facility prior to testing. The 20- by 24-ft heliostat mirror (not shown in this photograph) has a dual-axis control that keeps a reflection of the sunlight on the 18-ft diameter concentrator mirror, which then focuses the sunlight to a 4-in focal point inside the vacuum chamber. The focal point has 10 kilowatts of intense solar power. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move theNation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  18. Electric propulsion for small satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keidar, Michael; Zhuang, Taisen; Shashurin, Alexey; Teel, George; Chiu, Dereck; Lukas, Joseph; Haque, Samudra; Brieda, Lubos

    2015-01-01

    Propulsion is required for satellite motion in outer space. The displacement of a satellite in space, orbit transfer and its attitude control are the task of space propulsion, which is carried out by rocket engines. Electric propulsion uses electric energy to energize or accelerate the propellant. The electric propulsion, which uses electrical energy to accelerate propellant in the form of plasma, is known as plasma propulsion. Plasma propulsion utilizes the electric energy to first, ionize the propellant and then, deliver energy to the resulting plasma leading to plasma acceleration. Many types of plasma thrusters have been developed over last 50 years. The variety of these devices can be divided into three main categories dependent on the mechanism of acceleration: (i) electrothermal, (ii) electrostatic and (iii) electromagnetic. Recent trends in space exploration associate with the paradigm shift towards small and efficient satellites, or micro- and nano-satellites. A particular example of microthruster considered in this paper is the micro-cathode arc thruster (µCAT). The µCAT is based on vacuum arc discharge. Thrust is produced when the arc discharge erodes some of the cathode at high velocity and is accelerated out the nozzle by a Lorentz force. The thrust amount is controlled by varying the frequency of pulses with demonstrated range to date of 1-50 Hz producing thrust ranging from 1 µN to 0.05 mN.

  19. Laser Safety Device

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    A major focus of work done at Air Products and Chemicals' Laser Application Laboratory is on use of ultraviolet radiation using high energy excimer lasers. Because light within the wavelength of excimer lasers is invisible, it can cause serious damage to eyes and tissue. To contain the laser beam, Air Products Incorporated a Jet Propulsion Laboratory invention described in a technical support package into its beam stops. The technology interrupts the laser pathway and allows workers to remain in the target area without shutting off the laser.

  20. Asymmetrical Capacitors for Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Canning, Francis X.; Melcher, Cory; Winet, Edwin

    2004-01-01

    Asymmetrical Capacitor Thrusters have been proposed as a source of propulsion. For over eighty years, it has been known that a thrust results when a high voltage is placed across an asymmetrical capacitor, when that voltage causes a leakage current to flow. However, there is surprisingly little experimental or theoretical data explaining this effect. This paper reports on the results of tests of several Asymmetrical Capacitor Thrusters (ACTs). The thrust they produce has been measured for various voltages, polarities, and ground configurations and their radiation in the VHF range has been recorded. These tests were performed at atmospheric pressure and at various reduced pressures. A simple model for the thrust was developed. The model assumed the thrust was due to electrostatic forces on the leakage current flowing across the capacitor. It was further assumed that this current involves charged ions which undergo multiple collisions with air. These collisions transfer momentum. All of the measured data was consistent with this model. Many configurations were tested, and the results suggest general design principles for ACTs to be used for a variety of purposes.

  1. Hybrid Propulsion Technology Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jensen, G. E.; Holzman, A. L.

    1990-01-01

    Future launch systems of the United States will require improvements in booster safety, reliability, and cost. In order to increase payload capabilities, performance improvements are also desirable. The hybrid rocket motor (HRM) offers the potential for improvements in all of these areas. The designs are presented for two sizes of hybrid boosters, a large 4.57 m (180 in.) diameter booster duplicating the Advanced Solid Rocket Motor (ASRM) vacuum thrust-time profile and smaller 2.44 m (96 in.), one-quater thrust level booster. The large booster would be used in tandem, while eight small boosters would be used to achieve the same total thrust. These preliminary designs were generated as part of the NASA Hybrid Propulsion Technology Program. This program is the first phase of an eventual three-phaes program culminating in the demonstration of a large subscale engine. The initial trade and sizing studies resulted in preferred motor diameters, operating pressures, nozzle geometry, and fuel grain systems for both the large and small boosters. The data were then used for specific performance predictions in terms of payload and the definition and selection of the requirements for the major components: the oxidizer feed system, nozzle, and thrust vector system. All of the parametric studies were performed using realistic fuel regression models based upon specific experimental data.

  2. Mars Rocket Propulsion System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zubrin, Robert; Harber, Dan; Nabors, Sammy

    2008-01-01

    A report discusses the methane and carbon monoxide/LOX (McLOx) rocket for ascent from Mars as well as other critical space propulsion tasks. The system offers a specific impulse over 370 s roughly 50 s higher than existing space-storable bio-propellants. Current Mars in-situ propellant production (ISPP) technologies produce impure methane and carbon monoxide in various combinations. While separation and purification of methane fuel is possible, it adds complexity to the propellant production process and discards an otherwise useful fuel product. The McLOx makes such complex and wasteful processes unnecessary by burning the methane/CO mixtures produced by the Mars ISPP systems without the need for further refinement. Despite the decrease in rocket-specific impulse caused by the CO admixture, the improvement offered by concomitant increased propellant density can provide a net improvement in stage performance. One advantage is the increase of the total amount of propellant produced, but with a decrease in mass and complexity of the required ISPP plant. Methane/CO fuel mixtures also may be produced by reprocessing the organic wastes of a Moon base or a space station, making McLOx engines key for a human Lunar initiative or the International Space Station (ISS) program. Because McLOx propellant components store at a common temperature, very lightweight and compact common bulkhead tanks can be employed, improving overall stage performance further.

  3. Propulsion Technology Needs for Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, Thomas

    2007-01-01

    The objectives of currently planned exploration efforts, as well as those further in the future, require significant advancements in propulsion technologies. The current Lunar exploration architecture has set goals and mission objectives that necessitate the use of new systems and the extension of existing technologies beyond present applications. In the near term, the majority of these technologies are the result of a need to apply high performing cryogenic propulsion systems to long duration in-space applications. Advancement of cryogenic propulsion to these applications is crucial to provide higher performing propulsion systems that reduce the vehicle masses; enhance the safety of vehicle systems and ground operations; and provide a path for In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU).Use of a LOX/LH2 main propulsion system for Lunar Lander Descent is a top priority because more conventional storable propellants are far from meeting the performance needs of the current architecture. While LOX/LH2 pump feed engines have been used in flight applications for many years, these engines have limited throttle capabilities. Engines that are capable of much greater throttling while still meeting high performance goals are a necessity to achieving exploration goals. Applications of LOX/CH4 propulsion to Lander ascent propulsion systems and reaction control systems are also if interest because of desirable performance and operations improvements over conventional storable systems while being more suitable for use of in-situ produced propellants. Within the current lunar architecture, use of cryogenic propulsion for the Earth Departure Stage and Lunar Lander elements also necessitate the need for advanced Cryogenic Fluid Management technologies. These technologies include long duration propellant storage/distribution, low-gravity propellant management, cryogenic couplings and disconnects, light weight composite tanks and support structure, and subsystem integration. In addition to

  4. Laser Propulsion—Is it another myth or a real potential?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Joung R.

    2008-04-01

    This paper discusses different principles of inducing propulsive power using lasers and examines the performance limits along with pros and cons with respect to different space propulsion applications: satellite launching, orbital transfer, space debris clearing, satellite propulsion, and space travels. It concludes that a use of electrical propulsion, in conjunction with laser power beaming, is the most feasible application with technological and economic advantages for commercial use within the next decades.

  5. Laser rocket system analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, W. S.; Forsyth, J. B.; Skratt, J. P.

    1979-01-01

    The laser rocket systems investigated in this study were for orbital transportation using space-based, ground-based and airborne laser transmitters. The propulsion unit of these systems utilizes a continuous wave (CW) laser beam focused into a thrust chamber which initiates a plasma in the hydrogen propellant, thus heating the propellant and providing thrust through a suitably designed nozzle and expansion skirt. The specific impulse is limited only by the ability to adequately cool the thruster and the amount of laser energy entering the engine. The results of the study showed that, with advanced technology, laser rocket systems with either a space- or ground-based laser transmitter could reduce the national budget allocated to space transportation by 10 to 345 billion dollars over a 10-year life cycle when compared to advanced chemical propulsion systems (LO2-LH2) of equal capability. The variation in savings depends upon the projected mission model.

  6. Hypersonic MHD Propulsion System Integration for the Mercury Lightcraft

    SciTech Connect

    Myrabo, L.N.; Rosa, R.J.

    2004-03-30

    Introduced herein are the design, systems integration, and performance analysis of an exotic magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) slipstream accelerator engine for a single-occupant 'Mercury' lightcraft. This ultra-energetic, laser-boosted vehicle is designed to ride a 'tractor beam' into space, transmitted from a future orbital network of satellite solar power stations. The lightcraft's airbreathing combined-cycle engine employs a rotary pulsed detonation thruster mode for lift-off and landing, and an MHD slipstream accelerator mode at hypersonic speeds. The latter engine transforms the transatmospheric acceleration path into a virtual electromagnetic 'mass-driver' channel; the hypersonic momentum exchange process (with the atmosphere) enables engine specific impulses in the range of 6000 to 16,000 seconds, and propellant mass fractions as low as 10%. The single-stage-to-orbit, highly reusable lightcraft can accelerate at 3 Gs into low Earth orbit with its throttle just barely beyond 'idle' power, or virtually 'disappear' at 30 G's and beyond. The objective of this advanced lightcraft design is to lay the technological foundations for a safe, very low cost (e.g., 1000X below chemical rockets) air and space transportation for human life in the mid-21st Century - a system that will be completely 'green' and independent of Earth's limited fossil fuel reserves.

  7. Hypersonic MHD Propulsion System Integration for the Mercury Lightcraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myrabo, L. N.; Rosa, R. J.

    2004-03-01

    Introduced herein are the design, systems integration, and performance analysis of an exotic magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) slipstream accelerator engine for a single-occupant ``Mercury'' lightcraft. This ultra-energetic, laser-boosted vehicle is designed to ride a `tractor beam' into space, transmitted from a future orbital network of satellite solar power stations. The lightcraft's airbreathing combined-cycle engine employs a rotary pulsed detonation thruster mode for lift-off & landing, and an MHD slipstream accelerator mode at hypersonic speeds. The latter engine transforms the transatmospheric acceleration path into a virtual electromagnetic `mass-driver' channel; the hypersonic momentum exchange process (with the atmosphere) enables engine specific impulses in the range of 6000 to 16,000 seconds, and propellant mass fractions as low as 10%. The single-stage-to-orbit, highly reusable lightcraft can accelerate at 3 Gs into low Earth orbit with its throttle just barely beyond `idle' power, or virtually `disappear' at 30 G's and beyond. The objective of this advanced lightcraft design is to lay the technological foundations for a safe, very low cost (e.g., 1000X below chemical rockets) air and space transportation for human life in the mid-21st Century - a system that will be completely `green' and independent of Earth's limited fossil fuel reserves.

  8. Magnetohydrodynamic sea water propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Petrick, M.; Thomas, A.; Genens, L.; Libera, J.; Nietert, R.; Bouillard, J.; Pierson, E.; Hill, D.; Picologlou, B.; Ohlsson, O.; Kasprzyk, T.; Berry, G.

    1991-01-01

    An experimental and theoretical investigation of a large scale MHD propulsor has been undertaken whose objectives are to (1) investigate the transient and steady state performance of the thruster over operating parameter ranges that are compatible with achievement of high efficiency, (2) to quantify the principal loss mechanisms within the thruster and (3) to obtain preliminary hydroacoustic data. The performance of the thruster was first investigated theoretically with a 3-D code to quantify the loss mechanisms and identify experimental parameter ranges of interest. The loss mechanisms of interest are ohmic losses within the channel and those resulting from electrical currents at the entrance and exit of the thruster, and enhanced frictional losses. The analysis indicated that the relative importance of the loss mechanisms was a function of the thruster design and operating parameters. The experimental investigation of the large scale propulsor is being conducted on a sea water test facility that was designed to match the capabilities of a large 6-T superconducting magnet. The facility design was such that {approximately}90{degrees} of all losses occurred within the propulsion test train (inlet nozzle, propulsor and diffuser) thus facilitating isolation of the loss mechanisms. The test thruster itself is heavily instrumented to provide local measurements of velocity, pressure, and electric fields. The predicted overall thruster performance and value of the loss mechanisms will be compared with measured values. Comparisons will also be presented of the voltage gradients between electrodes, overall thruster efficiency, axial pressure gradients across the propulsor, change in velocity profiles, axial and vertical current distributions and exit distribution of the electrolytic gases.

  9. Magnetohydrodynamic sea water propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Petrick, M.; Thomas, A.; Genens, L.; Libera, J.; Nietert, R.; Bouillard, J.; Pierson, E.; Hill, D.; Picologlou, B.; Ohlsson, O.; Kasprzyk, T.; Berry, G.

    1991-12-31

    An experimental and theoretical investigation of a large scale MHD propulsor has been undertaken whose objectives are to (1) investigate the transient and steady state performance of the thruster over operating parameter ranges that are compatible with achievement of high efficiency, (2) to quantify the principal loss mechanisms within the thruster and (3) to obtain preliminary hydroacoustic data. The performance of the thruster was first investigated theoretically with a 3-D code to quantify the loss mechanisms and identify experimental parameter ranges of interest. The loss mechanisms of interest are ohmic losses within the channel and those resulting from electrical currents at the entrance and exit of the thruster, and enhanced frictional losses. The analysis indicated that the relative importance of the loss mechanisms was a function of the thruster design and operating parameters. The experimental investigation of the large scale propulsor is being conducted on a sea water test facility that was designed to match the capabilities of a large 6-T superconducting magnet. The facility design was such that {approximately}90{degrees} of all losses occurred within the propulsion test train (inlet nozzle, propulsor and diffuser) thus facilitating isolation of the loss mechanisms. The test thruster itself is heavily instrumented to provide local measurements of velocity, pressure, and electric fields. The predicted overall thruster performance and value of the loss mechanisms will be compared with measured values. Comparisons will also be presented of the voltage gradients between electrodes, overall thruster efficiency, axial pressure gradients across the propulsor, change in velocity profiles, axial and vertical current distributions and exit distribution of the electrolytic gases.

  10. Negative Mass Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    Schrödinger's analysis of the Dirac equation gives a hint for the existence of negative masses hidden behind positive masses. But their use for propulsion by reducing the inertia of matter for example, in the limit of macroscopic bodied with zero rest mass, depends on a technical solution to free them from their imprisonment by positive masses. It appears that there are basically two ways this might be achieved: 1. By the application of strong electromagnetic or gravitational fields or by high particle energies. 2. By searching for places in the universe where nature has already done this separation, and from where the negative masses can be mined. The first of these two possibilities is for all practical means excluded, because if possible at all, it would depend on electromagnetic or gravitational fields with strength beyond what is technically attainable, or on extremely large likewise not attainable particle energies. With regard to the 2nd possibility, it has been observed that non-baryonic cold dark matter tends to accumulate near the center of galaxies, or places in the universe which have a large gravitational potential well. Because of the equivalence principle of general relativity, the attraction towards the center of a gravitational potential well, produced by a positive mass, is for negative masses the same as for positive masses, and large amounts of negative masses might have over billions of years been trapped in these gravitational potential wells. Now it just happens that the center of the moon is a potential well, not too deep that it cannot be reached by making a tunnel through the moon, not possible for the deeper potential well of the earth, where the temperature and pressure are too high. Making a tunnel through the moon, provided there is a good supply of negative mass, could revolutionize interstellar space flight. A sequence of thermonuclear shape charges would make such tunnel technically feasible.

  11. Balancing the competing requirements of air-breathing and display behaviour during male-male interactions in Siamese fighting fish Betta splendens.

    PubMed

    Alton, Lesley A; Portugal, Steven J; White, Craig R

    2013-02-01

    Air-breathing fish of the Anabantoidei group meet their metabolic requirements for oxygen through both aerial and aquatic gas exchange. Siamese fighting fish Betta splendens are anabantoids that frequently engage in aggressive male-male interactions which cause significant increases in metabolic rate and oxygen requirements. These interactions involve opercular flaring behaviour that is thought to limit aquatic oxygen uptake, and combines with the increase in metabolic rate to cause an increase in air-breathing behaviour. Air-breathing events interrupt display behaviour and increase risk of predation, raising the question of how Siamese fighting fish manage their oxygen requirements during agonistic encounters. Using open-flow respirometry, we measured rate of oxygen consumption in displaying fish to determine if males increase oxygen uptake per breath to minimise visits to the surface, or increase their reliance on aquatic oxygen uptake. We found that the increased oxygen requirements of Siamese fighting fish during display behaviour were met by increased oxygen uptake from the air with no significant changes in aquatic oxygen uptake. The increased aerial oxygen uptake was achieved almost entirely by an increase in air-breathing frequency. We conclude that limitations imposed by the reduced gill surface area of air-breathing fish restrict the ability of Siamese fighting fish to increase aquatic uptake, and limitations of the air-breathing organ of anabantoids largely restrict their capacity to increase oxygen uptake per breath. The resulting need to increase surfacing frequency during metabolically demanding agonistic encounters has presumably contributed to the evolution of the stereotyped surfacing behaviour seen during male-male interactions, during which one of the fish will lead the other to the surface, and each will take a breath of air. PMID:23178457

  12. Balancing the competing requirements of air-breathing and display behaviour during male-male interactions in Siamese fighting fish Betta splendens.

    PubMed

    Alton, Lesley A; Portugal, Steven J; White, Craig R

    2013-02-01

    Air-breathing fish of the Anabantoidei group meet their metabolic requirements for oxygen through both aerial and aquatic gas exchange. Siamese fighting fish Betta splendens are anabantoids that frequently engage in aggressive male-male interactions which cause significant increases in metabolic rate and oxygen requirements. These interactions involve opercular flaring behaviour that is thought to limit aquatic oxygen uptake, and combines with the increase in metabolic rate to cause an increase in air-breathing behaviour. Air-breathing events interrupt display behaviour and increase risk of predation, raising the question of how Siamese fighting fish manage their oxygen requirements during agonistic encounters. Using open-flow respirometry, we measured rate of oxygen consumption in displaying fish to determine if males increase oxygen uptake per breath to minimise visits to the surface, or increase their reliance on aquatic oxygen uptake. We found that the increased oxygen requirements of Siamese fighting fish during display behaviour were met by increased oxygen uptake from the air with no significant changes in aquatic oxygen uptake. The increased aerial oxygen uptake was achieved almost entirely by an increase in air-breathing frequency. We conclude that limitations imposed by the reduced gill surface area of air-breathing fish restrict the ability of Siamese fighting fish to increase aquatic uptake, and limitations of the air-breathing organ of anabantoids largely restrict their capacity to increase oxygen uptake per breath. The resulting need to increase surfacing frequency during metabolically demanding agonistic encounters has presumably contributed to the evolution of the stereotyped surfacing behaviour seen during male-male interactions, during which one of the fish will lead the other to the surface, and each will take a breath of air.

  13. Aerodynamic experimentation with ducted models as applied to hypersonic air-breathing vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goon'ko, Yu. P.

    A methodology of experimentation in high supersonic wind tunnels for studying aerodynamic characteristics of hypersonic flying vehicles powered by air-breathing engines is discussed. Investigations of such total aerodynamic forces as drag, lift and pitching moment at testing the models are implicit when the air flow through the model ducts is accomplished so that to provide the simulation of the external flow around the airplane and flow over the inlets, but the operating engines and, hence, the exhaust jets are not modeled. The methods used for testing such models are based on the measurement of duct stream parameters alongside with the balance measurement of aerodynamic forces acting on the models. In the tests, aerometric tools are used such as narrow metering nozzles (plugs), pitot and static pressure probes, stagnation temperature probes and pressure orifices in walls of the model duct. The aerometric data serve to determine the flow rate and momentum of the stream at the duct exit. The internal non-simulated forces of the model ducts are also determined using the conservation equations for energy, mass flow and momentum, and these forces are eliminated from the aerodynamic test results. The techniques of the said model testing have been well developed as applied to supersonic aircraft, however their application for hypersonic vehicles whose models are tested at high supersonic speeds, Mach number M∞>4, implies some specific features. In the present paper, the results of experimental and theoretical study of these features are discussed. Some experimental data on aerodynamics of hypersonic aircraft models received in methodological tests are also presented. The tunnel experiments have been carried out in the Mach number range M∞=2-6.

  14. High blood oxygen affinity in the air-breathing swamp eel Monopterus albus.

    PubMed

    Damsgaard, Christian; Findorf, Inge; Helbo, Signe; Kocagoz, Yigit; Buchanan, Rasmus; Huong, Do Thi Thanh; Weber, Roy E; Fago, Angela; Bayley, Mark; Wang, Tobias

    2014-12-01

    The Asian swamp eel (Monopterus albus, Zuiew 1793) is a facultative air-breathing fish with reduced gills. Previous studies have shown that gas exchange seems to occur across the epithelium of the buccopharyngeal cavity, the esophagus and the integument, resulting in substantial diffusion limitations that must be compensated by adaptations in others steps of the O₂ transport system to secure adequate O₂ delivery to the respiring tissues. We therefore investigated O₂ binding properties of whole blood, stripped hemoglobin (Hb), two major isoHb components and the myoglobin (Mb) from M. albus. Whole blood was sampled using indwelling catheters for blood gas analysis and determination of O₂ equilibrium curves. Hb was purified to assess the effects of endogenous allosteric effectors, and Mb was isolated from heart and skeletal muscle to determine its O₂ binding properties. The blood of M. albus has a high O₂ carrying capacity [hematocrit (Hct) of 42.4±4.5%] and binds O₂ with an unusually high affinity (P₅₀=2.8±0.4mmHg at 27°C and pH7.7), correlating with insensitivity of the Hb to the anionic allosteric effectors that normally decrease Hb-O₂ affinity. In addition, Mb is present at high concentrations in both heart and muscle (5.16±0.99 and 1.08±0.19mg ∙ g wet tissue⁻¹, respectively). We suggest that the high Hct and high blood O₂ affinity serve to overcome the low diffusion capacity in the relatively inefficient respiratory surfaces, while high Hct and Mb concentration aid in increasing the O₂ flux from the blood to the muscles.

  15. Tip-to-tail numerical simulation of a hypersonic air-breathing engine with ethylene fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dharavath, Malsur; Manna, P.; Chakraborty, Debasis

    2016-11-01

    End to end CFD simulations of external and internal flow paths of an ethylene fueled hypersonic airbreathing vehicle with including forebody, horizontal fins, vertical fins, intake, combustor, single expansion ramp nozzle are carried out. The performance of the scramjet combustor and vehicle net thrust-drag is calculated for hypersonic cruise condition. Three-dimensional Navier-Stokes equations are solved along with SST-k-ω turbulence model using the commercial CFD software CFX-14. Single step chemical reaction based on fast chemistry assumption is used for combustion of gaseous ethylene fuel. Simulations captured complex shock structures including the shocks generated from the vehicle nose and compression ramps, impingement of cowl-shock on vehicle undersurface and its reflection in the intake and combustor etc. Various thermochemical parameters are analyzed and performance parameters are evaluated for nonreacting and reacting cases. Very good mixing (~98%) of fuel with incoming air stream is observed. Positive thrust-drag margins are obtained for fuel equivalence ratio of 0.6 and computed combustion efficiency is observed to be 94 %. Effect of equivalence ratio on the vehicle performance is studied parametrically. Though the combustion efficiency has come down by 8% for fuel equivalence ratio of 0.8, net vehicle thrust is increased by 44%. Heat flux distribution on the various walls of the whole vehicle including combustor is estimated for the isothermal wall condition of 1000 K in reacting flow. Higher local heat flux values are observed at all the leading edges of the vehicle (i.e., nose, wing, fin and cowl leading edges) and strut regions of the combustor.

  16. Environmental hypertonicity causes induction of gluconeogenesis in the air-breathing singhi catfish, Heteropneustes fossilis.

    PubMed

    Das, Manas; Banerjee, Bodhisattwa; Choudhury, Mahua G; Saha, Nirmalendu

    2013-01-01

    The air-breathing singhi catfish (Heteropneustes fossilis) is frequently being challenged by different environmental insults such as hyper-ammonia, dehydration and osmotic stresses in their natural habitats throughout the year. The present study investigated the effect of hyperosmotic stress, due to exposure to hypertonic environment (300 mM mannitol) for 14 days, on gluconeogenesis in this catfish. In situ exposure to hypertonic environment led to significant stimulation of gluconeogenic fluxes from the perfused liver after 7 days of exposure, followed by further increase after 14 days in presence of three different potential gluconeogenic substrates (lactate, pyruvate and glutamate). Environmental hypertonicity also caused a significant increase of activities of key gluconeogenic enzymes, namely phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, fructose 1, 6-bisphosphatase and glucose 6-phosphatase by about 2-6 fold in liver, and 3-6 fold in kidney tissues. This was accompanied by more abundance of enzyme proteins by about 1.8-3.7 fold and mRNAs by about 2.2-5.2 fold in both the tissues with a maximum increase after 14 days of exposure. Hence, the increase in activities of key gluconeogenic enzymes under hypertonic stress appeared to be as a result of transcriptional regulation of genes. Immunocytochemical analysis further confirmed the tissue specific localized expression of these enzymes in both the tissues with the possibility of expressing more in the same localized places. The induction of gluconeogenesis during exposure to environmental hypertonicity possibly occurs as a consequence of changes in hydration status/cell volume of different cell types. Thus, these adaptational strategies related to gluconeogenesis that are observed in this catfish under hypertonic stress probably help in maintaining glucose homeostasis and also for a proper energy supply to support metabolic demands mainly for ion transport and other altered metabolic processes under various environmental

  17. Haematological and ion regulatory effects of nitrite in the air-breathing snakehead fish Channa striata.

    PubMed

    Lefevre, Sjannie; Jensen, Frank B; Huong, Do T T; Wang, Tobias; Phuong, Nguyen T; Bayley, Mark

    2012-08-15

    The tolerance and effects of nitrite on ion balance and haematology were investigated in the striped snakehead, Channa striata Bloch 1793, which is an air-breathing fish with reduced gills of importance for aquaculture in South East Asia. C. striata was nitrite tolerant with a 96 h LC50 of 4.7 mM. Effects of sub-lethal exposures to nitrite (0mM, 1.4mM, and 3.0mM) were determined during a 7-day exposure period. Plasma nitrite increased, but the internal concentration remained well below ambient levels. Extracellular nitrate rose by several mM, indicating that a large proportion of the nitrite taken up was converted to nitrate. Nitrite reacted with erythrocyte haemoglobin (Hb) causing methaemoglobin (metHb) to increase to 30% and nitrosylhaemoglobin (HbNO) to increase to 10% of total Hb. Both metHb and HbNO stabilised after 4 days, and functional Hb levels accordingly never fell below 60% of total Hb. Haematocrit and total Hb were unaffected by nitrite. Although the effects of nitrite exposure seemed minor in terms of plasma nitrite and metHb increases, ion balance was strongly affected. In the high exposure group, total osmolality decreased from 320 mOsm to 260 mOsm, and plasma sodium from 150 mM to 120 mM, while plasma chloride fell from 105 mM to 60mM and plasma bicarbonate rose from 12 mM in controls to 20mM in exposed fish. The extreme changes in ion balance in C. striata are different from the response reported in other fish, and further studies are needed to investigate the mechanism behind the observed changes in regulation. PMID:22516674

  18. Haematological and ion regulatory effects of nitrite in the air-breathing snakehead fish Channa striata.

    PubMed

    Lefevre, Sjannie; Jensen, Frank B; Huong, Do T T; Wang, Tobias; Phuong, Nguyen T; Bayley, Mark

    2012-08-15

    The tolerance and effects of nitrite on ion balance and haematology were investigated in the striped snakehead, Channa striata Bloch 1793, which is an air-breathing fish with reduced gills of importance for aquaculture in South East Asia. C. striata was nitrite tolerant with a 96 h LC50 of 4.7 mM. Effects of sub-lethal exposures to nitrite (0mM, 1.4mM, and 3.0mM) were determined during a 7-day exposure period. Plasma nitrite increased, but the internal concentration remained well below ambient levels. Extracellular nitrate rose by several mM, indicating that a large proportion of the nitrite taken up was converted to nitrate. Nitrite reacted with erythrocyte haemoglobin (Hb) causing methaemoglobin (metHb) to increase to 30% and nitrosylhaemoglobin (HbNO) to increase to 10% of total Hb. Both metHb and HbNO stabilised after 4 days, and functional Hb levels accordingly never fell below 60% of total Hb. Haematocrit and total Hb were unaffected by nitrite. Although the effects of nitrite exposure seemed minor in terms of plasma nitrite and metHb increases, ion balance was strongly affected. In the high exposure group, total osmolality decreased from 320 mOsm to 260 mOsm, and plasma sodium from 150 mM to 120 mM, while plasma chloride fell from 105 mM to 60mM and plasma bicarbonate rose from 12 mM in controls to 20mM in exposed fish. The extreme changes in ion balance in C. striata are different from the response reported in other fish, and further studies are needed to investigate the mechanism behind the observed changes in regulation.

  19. The ecophysiology of air-breathing in crabs with special reference to Gecarcoidea natalis.

    PubMed

    Morris, Steve

    2002-04-01

    To succeed on land rather than in water, crabs require a suite of physiological and morphological changes, and ultimately the ability to reproduce without access open water. Some species have modified gills to assist in gas exchange but accessory gas exchange organs, usually lungs, occur in many species. In accomplished air-breathers the lung becomes larger and more vascularised with pulmonary vessels directing oxygenated haemolymph to the heart. The relative abundance of O(2) in air promotes relative hypoventilation and thus an internal hypercapnia to drive CO(2) excretion. Land crabs have a dual circulation via either lungs or gills and shunting between the two may depend on respiratory media or exercise state. During their breeding migration on Christmas Island Gecarcoidea natalis maintained arterial Po(2) by branchial O(2) uptake, while pulmonary O(2) pressure was reduced; partly because exercise doubled relative haemolymph flow through the gills. Related species rely on elevated haemocyanin concentration and affinity for O(2) to assist uptake but this compromises unloading at the tissues and thus the aerobic scope of tissues. Aquatic crabs exchange salt and ammonia with water via the gills but in land crabs this is not possible. Birgus latro has adopted uricotelism but other species excrete ammonia in either the urine or as gas. Land crabs minimise urinary salt loss using a filtration-reabsorption system analogous to the kidney. Urine is redirected across the gills where salt reabsorption occurs in systems under hormonal control, although in G. natalis this is stimulatory and in B. latro inhibitory. While crabs occupy a range of habitats from aquatic to terrestrial, these species do not comprise a physiological continuum but across the crab taxa individual species possess appropriate and specific physiological features to survive in their individual habitat.

  20. Research Opportunities in Space Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodgers, Stephen L.

    2007-01-01

    Rocket propulsion determines the primary characteristics of any space vehicle; how fast and far it can go, its lifetime, and its capabilities. It is the primary factor in safety and reliability and the biggest cost driver. The extremes of heat and pressure produced by propulsion systems push the limits of materials used for manufacturing. Space travel is very unforgiving with little room for errors, and so many things can go wrong with these very complex systems. So we have to plan for failure and that makes it costly. But what is more exciting than the roar of a rocket blasting into space? By its nature the propulsion world is conservative. The stakes are so high at every launch, in terms of payload value or in human life, that to introduce new components to a working, qualified system is extremely difficult and costly. Every launch counts and no risks are tolerated, which leads to the space world's version of Catch-22:"You can't fly till you flown." The last big 'game changer' in propulsion was the use of liquid hydrogen as a fuel. No new breakthrough, low cost access to space system will be developed without new efficient propulsion systems. Because there is no large commercial market driving investment in propulsion, what propulsion research is done is sponsored by government funding agencies. A further difficulty in propulsion technology development is that there are so few new systems flying. There is little opportunity to evolve propulsion technologies and to update existing systems with results coming out of research as there is in, for example, the auto industry. The biggest hurdle to space exploration is getting off the ground. The launch phase will consume most of the energy required for any foreseeable space exploration mission. The fundamental physical energy requirements of escaping earth's gravity make it difficult. It takes 60,000 kJ to put a kilogram into an escape orbit. The vast majority (-97%) of the energy produced by a launch vehicle is used

  1. Swimming & Propulsion in Viscoelastic Media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arratia, Paulo

    2012-02-01

    Many microorganisms have evolved within complex fluids, which include soil, intestinal fluid, and mucus. The material properties or rheology of such fluids can strongly affect an organism's swimming behavior. A major challenge is to understand the mechanism of propulsion in media that exhibit both solid- and fluid-like behavior, such as viscoelastic fluids. In this talk, we present experiments that explore the swimming behavior of biological organisms and artificial particles in viscoelastic media. The organism is the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, a roundworm widely used for biological research that swims by generating traveling waves along its body. Overall, we find that fluid elasticity hinders self-propulsion compared to Newtonian fluids due to the enhanced resistance to flow near hyperbolic points for viscoelastic fluids. As fluid elasticity increases, the nematode's propulsion speed decreases. These results are consistent with recent theoretical models for undulating sheets and cylinders. In order to gain further understanding on propulsion in viscoelastic media, we perform experiments with simple reciprocal artificial `swimmers' (magnetic dumbbell particles) in polymeric and micellar solutions. We find that self-propulsion is possible in viscoelastic media even if the motion is reciprocal.

  2. Space station propulsion test bed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Briley, G. L.; Evans, S. A.

    1989-01-01

    A test bed was fabricated to demonstrate hydrogen/oxygen propulsion technology readiness for the intital operating configuration (IOC) space station application. The test bed propulsion module and computer control system were delivered in December 1985, but activation was delayed until mid-1986 while the propulsion system baseline for the station was reexamined. A new baseline was selected with hydrogen/oxygen thruster modules supplied with gas produced by electrolysis of waste water from the space shuttle and space station. As a result, an electrolysis module was designed, fabricated, and added to the test bed to provide an end-to-end simulation of the baseline system. Subsequent testing of the test bed propulsion and electrolysis modules provided an end-to-end demonstration of the complete space station propulsion system, including thruster hot firings using the oxygen and hydrogen generated from electrolysis of water. Complete autonomous control and operation of all test bed components by the microprocessor control system designed and delivered during the program was demonstrated. The technical readiness of the system is now firmly established.

  3. Propulsion System Modeling and Simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tai, Jimmy C. M.; McClure, Erin K.; Mavris, Dimitri N.; Burg, Cecile

    2002-01-01

    The Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory at the School of Aerospace Engineering in Georgia Institute of Technology has developed a core competency that enables propulsion technology managers to make technology investment decisions substantiated by propulsion and airframe technology system studies. This method assists the designer/manager in selecting appropriate technology concepts while accounting for the presence of risk and uncertainty as well as interactions between disciplines. This capability is incorporated into a single design simulation system that is described in this paper. This propulsion system design environment is created with a commercially available software called iSIGHT, which is a generic computational framework, and with analysis programs for engine cycle, engine flowpath, mission, and economic analyses. iSIGHT is used to integrate these analysis tools within a single computer platform and facilitate information transfer amongst the various codes. The resulting modeling and simulation (M&S) environment in conjunction with the response surface method provides the designer/decision-maker an analytical means to examine the entire design space from either a subsystem and/or system perspective. The results of this paper will enable managers to analytically play what-if games to gain insight in to the benefits (and/or degradation) of changing engine cycle design parameters. Furthermore, the propulsion design space will be explored probabilistically to show the feasibility and viability of the propulsion system integrated with a vehicle.

  4. Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Research Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Millis, Marc G.

    1996-01-01

    In 1996, a team of government, university and industry researchers proposed a program to seek the ultimate breakthroughs in space transportation: propulsion that requires no propellant mass, propulsion that can approach and, if possible, circumvent light speed, and breakthrough methods of energy production to power such devices. This Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program, managed by Lewis Research Center, is one part of a comprehensive, long range Advanced Space Transportation Plan managed by Marshall Space Flight Center. Because the breakthrough goals are beyond existing science, a main emphasis of this program is to establish metrics and ground rules to produce near-term credible progress toward these incredible possibilities. An introduction to the emerging scientific possibilities from which such solutions can be sought is also presented.

  5. Automated Rocket Propulsion Test Management

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walters, Ian; Nelson, Cheryl; Jones, Helene

    2007-01-01

    The Rocket Propulsion Test-Automated Management System provides a central location for managing activities associated with Rocket Propulsion Test Management Board, National Rocket Propulsion Test Alliance, and the Senior Steering Group business management activities. A set of authorized users, both on-site and off-site with regard to Stennis Space Center (SSC), can access the system through a Web interface. Web-based forms are used for user input with generation and electronic distribution of reports easily accessible. Major functions managed by this software include meeting agenda management, meeting minutes, action requests, action items, directives, and recommendations. Additional functions include electronic review, approval, and signatures. A repository/library of documents is available for users, and all items are tracked in the system by unique identification numbers and status (open, closed, percent complete, etc.). The system also provides queries and version control for input of all items.

  6. Main Propulsion Test Article (MPTA)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snoddy, Cynthia

    2010-01-01

    Scope: The Main Propulsion Test Article integrated the main propulsion subsystem with the clustered Space Shuttle Main Engines, the External Tank and associated GSE. The test program consisted of cryogenic tanking tests and short- and long duration static firings including gimbaling and throttling. The test program was conducted on the S1-C test stand (Position B-2) at the National Space Technology Laboratories (NSTL)/Stennis Space Center. 3 tanking tests and 20 hot fire tests conducted between December 21 1 1977 and December 17, 1980 Configuration: The main propulsion test article consisted of the three space shuttle main engines, flightweight external tank, flightweight aft fuselage, interface section and a boilerplate mid/fwd fuselage truss structure.

  7. Nuclear thermal propulsion workshop overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, John S.

    1991-01-01

    NASA is planning an Exploration Technology Program as part of the Space Exploration Initiative to return U.S. astronauts to the moon, conduct intensive robotic exploration of the moon and Mars, and to conduct a piloted mission to Mars by 2019. Nuclear Propulsion is one of the key technology thrust for the human mission to Mars. The workshop addresses NTP (Nuclear Thermal Rocket) technologies with purpose to: assess the state-of-the-art of nuclear propulsion concepts; assess the potential benefits of the concepts for the mission to Mars; identify critical, enabling technologies; lay-out (first order) technology development plans including facility requirements; and estimate the cost of developing these technologies to flight-ready status. The output from the workshop will serve as a data base for nuclear propulsion project planning.

  8. The Need for Fusion Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cassibry, Jason

    2005-01-01

    Fusion propulsion is inevitable if the human race remains dedicated to exploration of the solar system. There are fundamental reasons why fusion surpasses more traditional approaches to routine crewed missions to Mars, crewed missions to the outer planets, and deep space high speed robotic missions, assuming that reduced trip times, increased payloads, and higher available power are desired. A recent series of informal discussions were held among members from government, academia, and industry concerning fusion propulsion. We compiled a sufficient set of arguments for utilizing fusion in space. If the U.S. is to lead the effort and produce a working system in a reasonable amount of time, NASA must take the initiative, relying on, but not waiting for, DOE guidance. In this talk those arguments for fusion propulsion are presented, along with fusion enabled mission examples, fusion technology trade space, and a proposed outline for future efforts.

  9. Materials Advance Chemical Propulsion Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2012-01-01

    In the future, the Planetary Science Division of NASA's Science Mission Directorate hopes to use better-performing and lower-cost propulsion systems to send rovers, probes, and observers to places like Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. For such purposes, a new propulsion technology called the Advanced Materials Bipropellant Rocket (AMBR) was developed under NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology (ISPT) project, located at Glenn Research Center. As an advanced chemical propulsion system, AMBR uses nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer and hydrazine fuel to propel a spacecraft. Based on current research and development efforts, the technology shows great promise for increasing engine operation and engine lifespan, as well as lowering manufacturing costs. In developing AMBR, ISPT has several goals: to decrease the time it takes for a spacecraft to travel to its destination, reduce the cost of making the propulsion system, and lessen the weight of the propulsion system. If goals like these are met, it could result in greater capabilities for in-space science investigations. For example, if the amount (and weight) of propellant required on a spacecraft is reduced, more scientific instruments (and weight) could be added to the spacecraft. To achieve AMBR s maximum potential performance, the engine needed to be capable of operating at extremely high temperatures and pressure. To this end, ISPT required engine chambers made of iridium-coated rhenium (strong, high-temperature metallic elements) that allowed operation at temperatures close to 4,000 F. In addition, ISPT needed an advanced manufacturing technique for better coating methods to increase the strength of the engine chamber without increasing the costs of fabricating the chamber.

  10. Z-Pinch Fusion Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miernik, Janie

    2011-01-01

    Fusion-based nuclear propulsion has the potential to enable fast interplanetary transportation. Shorter trips are better for humans in the harmful radiation environment of deep space. Nuclear propulsion and power plants can enable high Ispand payload mass fractions because they require less fuel mass. Fusion energy research has characterized the Z-Pinch dense plasma focus method. (1) Lightning is form of pinched plasma electrical discharge phenomena. (2) Wire array Z-Pinch experiments are commonly studied and nuclear power plant configurations have been proposed. (3) Used in the field of Nuclear Weapons Effects (NWE) testing in the defense industry, nuclear weapon x-rays are simulated through Z-Pinch phenomena.

  11. Center for Advanced Space Propulsion Second Annual Technical Symposium Proceedings

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    The proceedings for the Center for Advanced Space Propulsion Second Annual Technical Symposium are divided as follows: Chemical Propulsion, CFD; Space Propulsion; Electric Propulsion; Artificial Intelligence; Low-G Fluid Management; and Rocket Engine Materials.

  12. Propulsion Risk Reduction Activities for Non-Toxic Cryogenic Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Timothy D.; Klem, Mark D.; Fisher, Kenneth

    2010-01-01

    The Propulsion and Cryogenics Advanced Development (PCAD) Project s primary objective is to develop propulsion system technologies for non-toxic or "green" propellants. The PCAD project focuses on the development of non-toxic propulsion technologies needed to provide necessary data and relevant experience to support informed decisions on implementation of non-toxic propellants for space missions. Implementation of non-toxic propellants in high performance propulsion systems offers NASA an opportunity to consider other options than current hypergolic propellants. The PCAD Project is emphasizing technology efforts in reaction control system (RCS) thruster designs, ascent main engines (AME), and descent main engines (DME). PCAD has a series of tasks and contracts to conduct risk reduction and/or retirement activities to demonstrate that non-toxic cryogenic propellants can be a feasible option for space missions. Work has focused on 1) reducing the risk of liquid oxygen/liquid methane ignition, demonstrating the key enabling technologies, and validating performance levels for reaction control engines for use on descent and ascent stages; 2) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for liquid oxygen/liquid methane ascent engines; and 3) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for deep throttling liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen descent engines. The progress of these risk reduction and/or retirement activities will be presented.

  13. Propulsion Risk Reduction Activities for Nontoxic Cryogenic Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Timothy D.; Klem, Mark D.; Fisher, Kenneth L.

    2010-01-01

    The Propulsion and Cryogenics Advanced Development (PCAD) Project s primary objective is to develop propulsion system technologies for nontoxic or "green" propellants. The PCAD project focuses on the development of nontoxic propulsion technologies needed to provide necessary data and relevant experience to support informed decisions on implementation of nontoxic propellants for space missions. Implementation of nontoxic propellants in high performance propulsion systems offers NASA an opportunity to consider other options than current hypergolic propellants. The PCAD Project is emphasizing technology efforts in reaction control system (RCS) thruster designs, ascent main engines (AME), and descent main engines (DME). PCAD has a series of tasks and contracts to conduct risk reduction and/or retirement activities to demonstrate that nontoxic cryogenic propellants can be a feasible option for space missions. Work has focused on 1) reducing the risk of liquid oxygen/liquid methane ignition, demonstrating the key enabling technologies, and validating performance levels for reaction control engines for use on descent and ascent stages; 2) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for liquid oxygen/liquid methane ascent engines; and 3) demonstrating the key enabling technologies and validating performance levels for deep throttling liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen descent engines. The progress of these risk reduction and/or retirement activities will be presented.

  14. In-Space Propulsion Technology Program Solar Electric Propulsion Technologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dankanich, John W.

    2006-01-01

    NASA's In-space Propulsion (ISP) Technology Project is developing new propulsion technologies that can enable or enhance near and mid-term NASA science missions. The Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) technology area has been investing in NASA s Evolutionary Xenon Thruster (NEXT), the High Voltage Hall Accelerator (HiVHAC), lightweight reliable feed systems, wear testing, and thruster modeling. These investments are specifically targeted to increase planetary science payload capability, expand the envelope of planetary science destinations, and significantly reduce the travel times, risk, and cost of NASA planetary science missions. Status and expected capabilities of the SEP technologies are reviewed in this presentation. The SEP technology area supports numerous mission studies and architecture analyses to determine which investments will give the greatest benefit to science missions. Both the NEXT and HiVHAC thrusters have modified their nominal throttle tables to better utilize diminished solar array power on outbound missions. A new life extension mechanism has been implemented on HiVHAC to increase the throughput capability on low-power systems to meet the needs of cost-capped missions. Lower complexity, more reliable feed system components common to all electric propulsion (EP) systems are being developed. ISP has also leveraged commercial investments to further validate new ion and hall thruster technologies and to potentially lower EP mission costs.

  15. Electrolysis Propulsion Provides High-Performance, Inexpensive, Clean Spacecraft Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    deGroot, Wim A.

    1999-01-01

    An electrolysis propulsion system consumes electrical energy to decompose water into hydrogen and oxygen. These gases are stored in separate tanks and used when needed in gaseous bipropellant thrusters for spacecraft propulsion. The propellant and combustion products are clean and nontoxic. As a result, costs associated with testing, handling, and launching can be an order of magnitude lower than for conventional propulsion systems, making electrolysis a cost-effective alternative to state-of-the-art systems. The electrical conversion efficiency is high (>85 percent), and maximum thrust-to-power ratios of 0.2 newtons per kilowatt (N/kW), a 370-sec specific impulse, can be obtained. A further advantage of the water rocket is its dual-mode potential. For relatively high thrust applications, the system can be used as a bipropellant engine. For low thrust levels and/or small impulse bit requirements, cold gas oxygen can be used alone. An added innovation is that the same hardware, with modest modifications, can be converted into an energy-storage and power-generation fuel cell, reducing the spacecraft power and propulsion system weight by an order of magnitude.

  16. Current technology in ion and electrothermal propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Finke, R. C.; Murch, C. K.

    1973-01-01

    High performance propulsion devices, such as electrostatic ion engines and electrothermal thrusters, are achieving wide user acceptance. The current technology and projected development trends in the areas of ion and electrothermal propulsion systems and components are surveyed.

  17. Electronic modification of Pt via Ti and Se as tolerant cathodes in air-breathing methanol microfluidic fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Ma, Jiwei; Habrioux, Aurélien; Morais, Cláudia; Alonso-Vante, Nicolas

    2014-07-21

    We reported herein on the use of tolerant cathode catalysts such as carbon supported Pt(x)Ti(y) and/or Pt(x)Se(y) nanomaterials in an air-breathing methanol microfluidic fuel cell. In order to show the improvement of mixed-reactant fuel cell (MRFC) performances obtained with the developed tolerant catalysts, a classical Pt/C nanomaterial was used for comparison. Using 5 M methanol concentration in a situation where the fuel crossover is 100% (MRFC-mixed reactant fuel cell application), the maximum power density of the fuel cell with a Pt/C cathodic catalyst decreased by 80% in comparison with what is observed in the laminar flow fuel cell (LFFC) configuration. With Pt(x)Ti(y)/C and Pt(x)Se(y)/C cathode nanomaterials, the performance loss was only 55% and 20%, respectively. The evaluation of the tolerant cathode catalysts in an air-breathing microfluidic fuel cell suggests the development of a novel nanometric system that will not be size restricted. These interesting results are the consequence of the high methanol tolerance of these advanced electrocatalysts via surface electronic modification of Pt. Herein we used X-ray photoelectron and in situ FTIR spectroscopies to investigate the origin of the high methanol tolerance on modified Pt catalysts.

  18. Computational modeling of air-breathing microfluidic fuel cells with flow-over and flow-through anodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Biao; Ye, Ding-ding; Sui, Pang-Chieh; Djilali, Ned; Zhu, Xun

    2014-08-01

    A three-dimensional computational model for air-breathing microfluidic fuel cells (AMFCs) with flow-over and flow-through anodes is developed. The coupled multiphysics phenomena of fluid flow, species transport and electrochemical reactions are resolved numerically. The model has been validated against experimental data using an in-house AMFC prototype with a flow-through anode. Characteristics of fuel transfer and fuel crossover for both types of anodes are investigated. The model results reveal that the fuel transport to the flow-over anode is intrinsically limited by the fuel concentration boundary layer. Conversely, fuel transport for the flow-through anode is convectively enhanced by the permeate flow, and no concentration boundary layer is observed. An unexpected additional advantage of the flow-through anode configuration is lower parasitic (crossover) current density than the flow-over case at practical low flow rates. Cell performance of the flow-through case is found to be limited by reaction kinetics. The present model provides insights into the fuel transport and fuel crossover in air-breathing microfluidic fuel cells and provides guidance for further design and operation optimization.

  19. Perspective use of direct human blood as an energy source in air-breathing hybrid microfluidic fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dector, A.; Escalona-Villalpando, R. A.; Dector, D.; Vallejo-Becerra, V.; Chávez-Ramírez, A. U.; Arriaga, L. G.; Ledesma-García, J.

    2015-08-01

    This work presents a flexible and light air-breathing hybrid microfluidic fuel cell (HμFC) operated under biological conditions. A mixture of glucose oxidase, glutaraldehyde, multi-walled carbon nanotubes and vulcan carbon (GOx/VC-MWCNT-GA) was used as the bioanode. Meanwhile, integrating an air-exposed electrode (Pt/C) as the cathode enabled direct oxygen delivery from air. The microfluidic fuel cell performance was evaluated using glucose obtained from three different sources as the fuel: 5 mM glucose in phosphate buffer, human serum and human blood. For the last fuel, an open circuit voltage and maximum power density of 0.52 V and 0.20 mW cm-2 (at 0.38 V) were obtained respectively; meanwhile the maximum current density was 1.1 mA cm-2. Furthermore, the stability of the device was measured in terms of recovery after several polarization curves, showing excellent results. Although this air-breathing HμFC requires technological improvements before being tested in a biomedical device, it represents the best performance to date for a microfluidic fuel cell using human blood as glucose source.

  20. Gill morphometry of the facultative air-breathing loricariid fish,Hypostomus plecostomus (Walbaum) with, special emphasis on aquatic respiration.

    PubMed

    Aparecida Perna, S; Fernandes, M N

    1996-06-01

    Gill respiratory surface area and oxygen consumption during aquatic respiration were measured in the facultative air-breathing loricariid fish,Hypostomus plecostomus. The fish did not surface to breathe atmospheric air in normoxic water; air-breathing was evoked by environmental hypoxia (water oxygen tension=35±2, mmHg) and did not show size-related threshold differences for air breathing.During gradual hypoxia, without access to atmospheric, air,H. plecostomus was found to be an oxyregulator and showed a reduced range of water oxygen tension in which the oxygen consumption remained constant in smaller fish. The critical oxygen tensions were 55 and 33 mmHg at 25°C for fish of 14-30 g and 31-80g body weight, respectively.The gill respiratory surface area (total lamellae area) is reduced, however, the lamellar frequency per mm of gill filament is high which facilitates the gas exchange. Moreover, the increase of gill respiratory surface area (b=0.666) is higher than the increase in routine VO2 (b=0.338) showing a positive relationship between the gill respiratory surface area /VO2 ratio and body mass (b=0.328); this indicates that the fish have greater gill respiratory surface area per unit of routine VO2 as they grow.

  1. The Future of Spacecraft Nuclear Propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jansen, F.

    2014-06-01

    This paper summarizes the advantages of space nuclear power and propulsion systems. It describes the actual status of international power level dependent spacecraft nuclear propulsion missions, especially the high power EU-Russian MEGAHIT study including the Russian Megawatt-Class Nuclear Power Propulsion System, the NASA GRC project and the low and medium power EU DiPoP study. Space nuclear propulsion based mission scenarios of these studies are sketched as well.

  2. Nuclear Propulsion Technical Interchange Meeting, volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of the meeting was to review the work performed in fiscal year 1992 in the areas of nuclear thermal and nuclear electric propulsion technology development. These proceedings are an accumulation of the presentations provided at the meeting along with annotations provided by authors. The proceedings cover system concepts, technology development, and system modeling for nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) and nuclear electric propulsion (NEP). The test facilities required for the development of the nuclear propulsion systems are also discussed.

  3. Comparison of Mars Aircraft Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colozza, Anthony J.

    2003-01-01

    The propulsion system is a critical aspect of the performance and feasibility of a Mars aircraft. Propulsion system mass and performance greatly influence the aircraft s design and mission capabilities. Various propulsion systems were analyzed to estimate the system mass necessary for producing 35N of thrust within the Mars environment. Three main categories of propulsion systems were considered: electric systems, combustion engine systems and rocket systems. Also, the system masses were compared for mission durations of 1, 2, and 4 h.

  4. Advanced NSTS propulsion system verification study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Charles

    1989-01-01

    The merits of propulsion system development testing are discussed. The existing data base of technical reports and specialists is utilized in this investigation. The study encompassed a review of all available test reports of propulsion system development testing for the Saturn stages, the Titan stages, and the Space Shuttle main propulsion system. The knowledge on propulsion system development and system testing available from specialists and managers was also 'tapped' for inclusion.

  5. Test facilities for high power electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sovey, James S.; Vetrone, Robert H.; Grisnik, Stanley P.; Myers, Roger M.; Parkes, James E.

    1991-01-01

    Electric propulsion has applications for orbit raising, maneuvering of large space systems, and interplanetary missions. These missions involve propulsion power levels from tenths to tens of megawatts, depending upon the application. General facility requirements for testing high power electric propulsion at the component and thrust systems level are defined. The characteristics and pumping capabilities of many large vacuum chambers in the United States are reviewed and compared with the requirements for high power electric propulsion testing.

  6. Propulsion IVHM Extreme Environment Instrumentation Power IVHM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zakrajsek, June

    2000-01-01

    This paper presents propulsion and instrumentation power for integrated vehicle health management technologies. The topics include: 1) Propulsion IVHM Capabilities Research; 2) Projects: X-33 Post-Test Diagnostic System; 3) X-34 NITEX; 4) Advanced Health Monitoring Systems; 5) Active Vibration Monitoring System; 6) Smart Self Healing Propulsion Systems; 7) Extreme Environment Sensors; and 8) Systems Engineering and Integration.

  7. NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center, Volume 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This is the second volume in the 1994 annual report for the NASA Propulsion Engineering Research Center's Sixth Annual Symposium. This conference covered: (1) Combustors and Nozzles; (2) Turbomachinery Aero- and Hydro-dynamics; (3) On-board Propulsion systems; (4) Advanced Propulsion Applications; (5) Vaporization and Combustion; (6) Heat Transfer and Fluid Mechanics; and (7) Atomization and Sprays.

  8. NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, L.; Robinson, J.

    2004-11-01

    NASA's In-Space Propulsion Technology Program is investing in technologies that have the potential to revolutionize the robotic exploration of deep space. For robotic exploration and science missions, increased efficiencies of future propulsion systems are critical to reduce overall life-cycle costs and, in some cases, enable missions previously considered impossible. Continued reliance on conventional chemical propulsion alone will not enable the robust exploration of deep space - the maximum theoretical efficiencies have almost been reached and they are insufficient to meet needs for many ambitious science missions currently being considered. The In-Space Propulsion Technology Program's technology portfolio includes many advanced propulsion systems. From the next generation ion propulsion system operating in the 5 - 10 kW range, to advanced cryogenic propulsion, substantial advances in spacecraft propulsion performance are anticipated. Some of the most promising technologies for achieving these goals use the environment of space itself for energy and propulsion and are generically called, ``propellantless" because they do not require on-board fuel to achieve thrust. Propellantless propulsion technologies include scientific innovations such as solar sails, electrodynamic and momentum transfer tethers, aeroassist, and aerocapture. This paper will provide an overview of both propellantless and propellant-based advanced propulsion technologies, and NASA's plans for advancing them as part of the \\$60M per year In-Space Propulsion Technology Program. Solar sails and aerocapture are candidates for flight validation as early as 2008 in partnership with NASA's New Millennium Program.

  9. 46 CFR 130.120 - Propulsion control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... engine; (2) Control of the direction of propeller-shaft rotation; (3) Control of propeller pitch, if a controllable-pitch propeller is fitted; and (4) Shutdown of each propulsion engine. (c) The propulsion-control... system allows the propulsion engine to overspeed or the pitch of the propeller to increase....

  10. 46 CFR 130.120 - Propulsion control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... engine; (2) Control of the direction of propeller-shaft rotation; (3) Control of propeller pitch, if a controllable-pitch propeller is fitted; and (4) Shutdown of each propulsion engine. (c) The propulsion-control... system allows the propulsion engine to overspeed or the pitch of the propeller to increase....

  11. 46 CFR 130.120 - Propulsion control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... engine; (2) Control of the direction of propeller-shaft rotation; (3) Control of propeller pitch, if a controllable-pitch propeller is fitted; and (4) Shutdown of each propulsion engine. (c) The propulsion-control... system allows the propulsion engine to overspeed or the pitch of the propeller to increase....

  12. 46 CFR 130.120 - Propulsion control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... engine; (2) Control of the direction of propeller-shaft rotation; (3) Control of propeller pitch, if a controllable-pitch propeller is fitted; and (4) Shutdown of each propulsion engine. (c) The propulsion-control... system allows the propulsion engine to overspeed or the pitch of the propeller to increase....

  13. 46 CFR 130.120 - Propulsion control.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... engine; (2) Control of the direction of propeller-shaft rotation; (3) Control of propeller pitch, if a controllable-pitch propeller is fitted; and (4) Shutdown of each propulsion engine. (c) The propulsion-control... system allows the propulsion engine to overspeed or the pitch of the propeller to increase....

  14. Characterization of advanced electric propulsion systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, P. K.

    1982-01-01

    Characteristic parameters of several advanced electric propulsion systems are evaluated and compared. The propulsion systems studied are mass driver, rail gun, argon MPD thruster, hydrogen free radical thruster and mercury electron bombardment ion engine. Overall, ion engines have somewhat better characteristics as compared to the other electric propulsion systems.

  15. In-space nuclear propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruno, C.; Dujarric, C.

    2013-02-01

    The past and the recent status of nuclear propulsion (NP) for application to space mission is presented. The case for using NP in manned space missions is made based on fundamental physics and on the necessity to ensure safe radiation doses to future astronauts. In fact, the presence of solar and galactic-cosmic radiation poses substantial risks to crews traveling for months in a row to destinations such as asteroids and Mars. Since passive or active shields would be massive to protect against the more energetic part of the radiation energy spectrum, the only alternative is to reduce dose by traveling faster. Hence the importance of propulsion systems with much higher specific impulse than that of current chemical systems, and thus the use of nuclear propulsion. Nuclear-thermal and nuclear-electric propulsions are then discussed in view of their potential application to missions now in the preliminary planning stage by space agencies and industries and being considered by the ISECG international panel. In this context, recent ideas for future use of the ISS that may require NP are also presented.

  16. Radiation Propulsion For Maintaining Orbits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richter, Robert

    1995-01-01

    Brief report proposes radiative propulsion systems for maintaining precise orbits of spacecraft. Radiation from electrical heaters directed outward by paraboloidal reflectors to produce small forces to oppose uncontrolled drag and solar-radiative forces perturbing orbits. Minimizes or eliminates need to fire rocket thrusters to correct orbits.

  17. Ultrasonic propulsion of kidney stones

    PubMed Central

    May, Philip C.; Bailey, Michael R.; Harper, Jonathan D.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose of review Ultrasonic propulsion is a novel technique that uses short bursts of focused ultrasonic pulses to reposition stones transcutaneously within the renal collecting system and ureter. The purpose of this review is to discuss the initial testing of effectiveness and safety, directions for refinement of technique and technology, and opinions on clinical application. Recent findings Preclinical studies with a range of probes, interfaces, and outputs have demonstrated feasibility and consistent safety of ultrasonic propulsion with room for increased outputs and refinement toward specific applications. Ultrasonic propulsion was used painlessly and without adverse events to reposition stones in 14 of 15 human study participants without restrictions on patient size, stone size, or stone location. The initial feasibility study showed applicability in a range of clinically relevant situations, including facilitating passage of residual fragments following ureteroscopy or shock wave lithotripsy, moving a large stone at the UPJ with relief of pain, and differentiating large stones from a collection of small fragments. Summary Ultrasonic propulsion shows promise as an office-based system for transcutaneously repositioning kidney stones. Potential applications include facilitating expulsion of residual fragments following ureteroscopy or shock wave lithotripsy, repositioning stones prior to treatment, and repositioning obstructing UPJ stones into the kidney to alleviate acute renal colic. PMID:26845428

  18. Magnetohydrodynamic Propulsion for the Classroom

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Font, Gabriel I.; Dudley, Scott C.

    2004-10-01

    The cinema industry can sometimes prove to be an ally when searching for material with which to motivate students to learn physics. Consider, for example, the electromagnetic force on a current in the presence of a magnetic field. This phenomenon is at the heart of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) propulsion systems. A submarine employing this type of propulsion was immortalized in the movie Hunt for Red October. While mentioning this to students certainly gets their attention, it often elicits comments that it is only fiction and not physically possible. Imagine their surprise when a working system is demonstrated! It is neither difficult nor expensive to construct a working system that can be demonstrated in the front of a classroom.2 In addition, all aspects of the engineering hurdles that must be surmounted and myths concerning this "silent propulsion" system are borne out in a simple apparatus. This paper details how to construct an inexpensive MHD propulsion boat that can be demonstrated for students in the classroom.

  19. Multi-Thruster Propulsion Apparatus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Patterson, Michael J. (Inventor)

    2016-01-01

    An electric propulsion machine includes an ion thruster having a discharge chamber housing a large surface area anode. The ion thruster includes flat annular ion optics with a small span to gap ratio. Optionally, at least a second thruster may be disposed radially offset from the ion thruster.

  20. Laser Fine-Adjustment Thruster For Space Vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Rezunkov, Yu. A.; Egorov, M. S.; Repina, E. V.; Safronov, A. L.; Rebrov, S. G.

    2010-05-06

    To the present time, a few laser propulsion engine devices have been developed by using dominant mechanisms of laser propulsion. Generally these mechanisms are laser ablation, laser breakdown of gases, and laser detonation waves that are induced due to extraction of the internal energy of polymer propellants. In the paper, we consider the Aero-Space Laser Propulsion Engine (ASLPE) developed earlier, in which all of these mechanisms are realized via interaction of laser radiation with polymers both in continuous wave (CW) and in repetitively pulsed modes of laser operation. The ASLPE is considered to be exploited as a unit of a laser propulsion device being arranged onboard space vehicles moving around the Earth or in interplanetary missions and intended to correct the vehicles orbits. To produce a thrust, a power of the solar pumped lasers designed to the present time is considered in the paper. The problem of increasing the efficiency of the laser propulsion device is analyzed as applied to space missions of vehicles by optimizing the laser propulsion propellant composition.

  1. Propulsive efficiency of the underwater dolphin kick in humans.

    PubMed

    von Loebbecke, Alfred; Mittal, Rajat; Fish, Frank; Mark, Russell

    2009-05-01

    Three-dimensional fully unsteady computational fluid dynamic simulations of five Olympic-level swimmers performing the underwater dolphin kick are used to estimate the swimmer's propulsive efficiencies. These estimates are compared with those of a cetacean performing the dolphin kick. The geometries of the swimmers and the cetacean are based on laser and CT scans, respectively, and the stroke kinematics is based on underwater video footage. The simulations indicate that the propulsive efficiency for human swimmers varies over a relatively wide range from about 11% to 29%. The efficiency of the cetacean is found to be about 56%, which is significantly higher than the human swimmers. The computed efficiency is found not to correlate with either the slender body theory or with the Strouhal number.

  2. Propulsive efficiency of the underwater dolphin kick in humans.

    PubMed

    von Loebbecke, Alfred; Mittal, Rajat; Fish, Frank; Mark, Russell

    2009-05-01

    Three-dimensional fully unsteady computational fluid dynamic simulations of five Olympic-level swimmers performing the underwater dolphin kick are used to estimate the swimmer's propulsive efficiencies. These estimates are compared with those of a cetacean performing the dolphin kick. The geometries of the swimmers and the cetacean are based on laser and CT scans, respectively, and the stroke kinematics is based on underwater video footage. The simulations indicate that the propulsive efficiency for human swimmers varies over a relatively wide range from about 11% to 29%. The efficiency of the cetacean is found to be about 56%, which is significantly higher than the human swimmers. The computed efficiency is found not to correlate with either the slender body theory or with the Strouhal number. PMID:19388788

  3. Propulsion of small launch vehicles using high power millimeter waves

    SciTech Connect

    Benford, J.; Myrabo, L.

    1994-12-31

    The use of microwave and millimeter wave beamed energy for propulsion of vehicles in the atmosphere and in space has been under study for at least 35 years. The need for improved propulsion technology is clear: chemical rockets orbit only a few percent of the liftoff mass at a cost of over $3,000/lb. The key advantage of the beamed power approach is to place the heavy and expensive components on the ground or in space, not in the vehicle. This paper, following upon the high power laser propulsion programs, uses a multi-cycle propulsion engine in which the first phase of ascent is based on the air breathing ramjet principle, a repetitive Pulsed Detonation Engine (PDE) which uses a microwave-supported detonation to heat the air working fluid, i.e., propellant. The second phase is a pure beam-heated rocket. The key factor is that high peak power is essential to this pulsed engine. This paper explores this propulsion concept using millimeter waves, the most advantageous part of the spectrum. The authors find that efficient system concepts can be developed for the beam powered launch system and that, while the capital cost may be as high as the earlier orbital transfer concepts, the operating cost is much lower. The vehicle can have payload-to-mass ratios on the order of one and cost (per pound to orbit) two orders of magnitudes less than for chemical rockets. This allows the weight of microwave powered vehicles to be very small, as low as {approximately}100 kg for test devices.

  4. Software To Secure Distributed Propulsion Simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blaser, Tammy M.

    2003-01-01

    Distributed-object computing systems are presented with many security threats, including network eavesdropping, message tampering, and communications middleware masquerading. NASA Glenn Research Center, and its industry partners, has taken an active role in mitigating the security threats associated with developing and operating their proprietary aerospace propulsion simulations. In particular, they are developing a collaborative Common Object Request Broker Architecture (CORBA) Security (CORBASec) test bed to secure their distributed aerospace propulsion simulations. Glenn has been working with its aerospace propulsion industry partners to deploy the Numerical Propulsion System Simulation (NPSS) object-based technology. NPSS is a program focused on reducing the cost and time in developing aerospace propulsion engines

  5. Fast-starting after a breath: air-breathing motions are kinematically similar to escape responses in the catfish Hoplosternum littorale

    PubMed Central

    Domenici, Paolo; Norin, Tommy; Bushnell, Peter G.; Johansen, Jacob L.; Skov, Peter Vilhelm; Svendsen, Morten B. S.; Steffensen, John F.; Abe, Augusto S.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Fast-starts are brief accelerations commonly observed in fish within the context of predator–prey interactions. In typical C-start escape responses, fish react to a threatening stimulus by bending their body into a C-shape during the first muscle contraction (i.e. stage 1) which provides a sudden acceleration away from the stimulus. Recently, similar C-starts have been recorded in fish aiming at a prey. Little is known about C-starts outside the context of predator–prey interactions, though recent work has shown that escape response can also be induced by high temperature. Here, we test the hypothesis that air-breathing fish may use C-starts in the context of gulping air at the surface. Hoplosternum littorale is an air-breathing freshwater catfish found in South America. Field video observations reveal that their air-breathing behaviour consists of air-gulping at the surface, followed by a fast turn which re-directs the fish towards the bottom. Using high-speed video in the laboratory, we compared the kinematics of the turn immediately following air-gulping performed by H. littorale in normoxia with those of mechanically-triggered C-start escape responses and with routine (i.e. spontaneous) turns. Our results show that air-breathing events overlap considerably with escape responses with a large stage 1 angle in terms of turning rates, distance covered and the relationship between these rates. Therefore, these two behaviours can be considered kinematically comparable, suggesting that air-breathing in this species is followed by escape-like C-start motions, presumably to minimise time at the surface and exposure to avian predators. These findings show that C-starts can occur in a variety of contexts in which fish may need to get away from areas of potential danger. PMID:25527644

  6. High-Throughput Sequencing Identifies MicroRNAs from Posterior Intestine of Loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) and Their Response to Intestinal Air-Breathing Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Songqian; Cao, Xiaojuan; Tian, Xianchang; Wang, Weimin

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) exert important roles in animal growth, immunity, and development, and regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Knowledges about the diversities of miRNAs and their roles in accessory air-breathing organs (ABOs) of fish remain unknown. In this work, we used high-throughput sequencing to identify known and novel miRNAs from the posterior intestine, an important ABO, in loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) under normal and intestinal air-breathing inhibited conditions. A total of 204 known and 84 novel miRNAs were identified, while 47 miRNAs were differentially expressed between the two small RNA libraries (i.e. between the normal and intestinal air-breathing inhibited group). Potential miRNA target genes were predicted by combining our transcriptome data of the posterior intestine of the loach under the same conditions, and then annotated using COG, GO, KEGG, Swissprot and Nr databases. The regulatory networks of miRNAs and their target genes were analyzed. The abundances of nine known miRNAs were validated by qRT-PCR. The relative expression profiles of six known miRNAs and their eight corresponding target genes, and two novel potential miRNAs were also detected. Histological characteristics of the posterior intestines in both normal and air-breathing inhibited group were further analyzed. This study contributes to our understanding on the functions and molecular regulatory mechanisms of miRNAs in accessory air-breathing organs of fish. PMID:26872032

  7. Multidisciplinary propulsion simulation using the numerical propulsion system simulator (NPSS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Claus, Russel W.

    1994-01-01

    Implementing new technology in aerospace propulsion systems is becoming prohibitively expensive. One of the major contributions to the high cost is the need to perform many large scale system tests. The traditional design analysis procedure decomposes the engine into isolated components and focuses attention on each single physical discipline (e.g., fluid for structural dynamics). Consequently, the interactions that naturally occur between components and disciplines can be masked by the limited interactions that occur between individuals or teams doing the design and must be uncovered during expensive engine testing. This overview will discuss a cooperative effort of NASA, industry, and universities to integrate disciplines, components, and high performance computing into a Numerical propulsion System Simulator (NPSS).

  8. Propulsion Systems Integration for a `Tractor Beam' Mercury Lightcraft: Liftoff Engine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myrabo, L. N.

    2003-05-01

    Described herein is the concept and propulsion systems integration for a revolutionary beam-propelled shuttle called the ``Mercury'' lightcraft - emphasizing the liftoff engine mode. This one-person, ultra-energetic vehicle is designed to ride `tractor beams' into space, transmitted from a future network of satellite solar power stations. The objective is to create a safe, very low cost (e.g., 1000X below chemical rockets) space transportation system for human life, one that is completely `green' and independent of Earth's limited fossil fuel reserves. The lightcraft's airbreathing combined-cycle engine operates in a rotary pulsed detonation mode PDE for lift-offs and landings; at hypersonic speeds it transitions into a magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) slipstream accelerator mode. For the latter, the transatmospheric flight path is momentarily transformed into an extremely long, electromagnetic ``mass-driver'' channel with an effective `fuel' specific impulse in the range of 6000 to 16,000 seconds. These future single-stage-to-orbit, highly-reusuable vehicles will ride ``Highways of Light,'' accelerating at 3 Gs into space, with their throttles just barely beyond `idle' power.

  9. Feasibility study of a nonequilibrium MHD accelerator concept for hypersonic propulsion ground testing

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Ying-Ming; Simmons, G.A.; Nelson, G.L.

    1995-12-31

    A National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) funded research study to evaluate the feasibility of using magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) body force accelerators to produce true air simulation for hypersonic propulsion ground testing is discussed in this paper. Testing over the airbreathing portion of a transatmospheric vehicle (TAV) hypersonic flight regime will require high quality air simulation for actual flight conditions behind a bow shock wave (forebody, pre-inlet region) for flight velocities up to Mach 16 and perhaps beyond. Material limits and chemical dissociation at high temperature limit the simulated flight Mach numbers in conventional facilities to less than Mach 12 for continuous and semi-continuous testing and less than Mach 7 for applications requiring true air chemistry. By adding kinetic energy directly to the flow, MHD accelerators avoid the high temperatures and pressures required in the reservoir region of conventional expansion facilities, allowing MHD to produce true flight conditions in flight regimes impossible with conventional facilities. The present study is intended to resolve some of the critical technical issues related to the operation of MHD at high pressure. Funding has been provided only for the first phase of a three to four year feasibility study that would culminate in the demonstration of MHD acceleration under conditions required to produce true flight conditions behind a bow shock wave to flight Mach numbers of 16 or greater. MHD critical issues and a program plan to resolve these are discussed.

  10. Magnetic levitation and MHD propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tixador, P.

    1994-04-01

    Magnetic levitation and MHD propulsion are now attracting attention in several countries. Different superconducting MagLev and MHD systems will be described concentrating on, above all, the electromagnetic aspect. Some programmes occurring throughout the world will be described. Magnetic levitated trains could be the new high speed transportation system for the 21st century. Intensive studies involving MagLev trains using superconductivity have been carried out in Japan since 1970. The construction of a 43 km long track is to be the next step. In 1991 a six year programme was launched in the United States to evaluate the performances of MagLev systems for transportation. The MHD (MagnetoHydroDynamic) offers some interesting advantages (efficiency, stealth characteristics, ...) for naval propulsion and increasing attention is being paid towards it nowadays. Japan is also up at the top with the tests of Yamato I, a 260 ton MHD propulsed ship. Depuis quelques années nous assistons à un redémarrage de programmes concernant la lévitation et la propulsion supraconductrices. Différents systèmes supraconducteurs de lévitation et de propulsion seront décrits en examinant plus particulièrement l'aspect électromagnétique. Quelques programmes à travers le monde seront abordés. Les trains à sustentation magnétique pourraient constituer un nouveau mode de transport terrestre à vitesse élevée (500 km/h) pour le 21^e siècle. Les japonais n'ont cessé de s'intéresser à ce système avec bobine supraconductrice. Ils envisagent un stade préindustriel avec la construction d'une ligne de 43 km. En 1991 un programme américain pour une durée de six ans a été lancé pour évaluer les performances des systèmes à lévitation pour le transport aux Etats Unis. La MHD (Magnéto- Hydro-Dynamique) présente des avantages intéressants pour la propulsion navale et un regain d'intérêt apparaît à l'heure actuelle. Le japon se situe là encore à la pointe des d

  11. OTV propulsion tecnology programmatic overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1984-01-01

    An advanced orbit transfer vehicles (OTV) which will be an integral part of the national space transportation system to carry men and cargo between low Earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit will perform planetary transfers and deliver large acceleration limited space structures to high Earth orbits is reviewed. The establishment of an advanced propulsion technology base for an OTV for the mid 1990's is outlined. The program supports technology for three unique engine concepts. Work is conducted to generic technologies which benefit all three concepts and specific technology which benefits only one of the concepts. Concept and technology definitions to identify propulsion innovations, and subcomponent research to explore and validate their potential benefits are included.

  12. OTV propulsion tecnology programmatic overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cooper, L. P.

    1984-04-01

    An advanced orbit transfer vehicles (OTV) which will be an integral part of the national space transportation system to carry men and cargo between low Earth orbit and geosynchronous orbit will perform planetary transfers and deliver large acceleration limited space structures to high Earth orbits is reviewed. The establishment of an advanced propulsion technology base for an OTV for the mid 1990's is outlined. The program supports technology for three unique engine concepts. Work is conducted to generic technologies which benefit all three concepts and specific technology which benefits only one of the concepts. Concept and technology definitions to identify propulsion innovations, and subcomponent research to explore and validate their potential benefits are included.

  13. NASA electrothermal auxiliary propulsion technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, J. R.

    1986-01-01

    Electrothermal auxiliary propulsion systems provide high performance options which can have major mission benefits. There are several electrothermal concepts which offer a range of characteristics and benefits. Resistojets are the highest thrust to power option and are currently operational at mission average values of specific impulse, I sub sp approximately 295 sec. Long life, multipropellant resistojets are being developed for the space station, and resistojet technology advancements are being pursued to improve the I sub sp by more than 20 percent for resistojets used in satellite applications. Direct current arcjets have the potential of I sub sp over 400 sec with storable propellants and should provide over 1000 sec with hydrogen. Advanced concepts are being investigated to provide high power density options and possible growth to primary propulsion applications. Broad based experimental and analytical research and technology programs of NASA are summarized and recent significant advances are reviewed.

  14. Planetary explorer liquid propulsion study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mckevitt, F. X.; Eggers, R. F.; Bolz, C. W.

    1971-01-01

    An analytical evaluation of several candidate monopropellant hydrazine propulsion system approaches is conducted in order to define the most suitable configuration for the combined velocity and attitude control system for the Planetary Explorer spacecraft. Both orbiter and probe-type missions to the planet Venus are considered. The spacecraft concept is that of a Delta launched spin-stabilized vehicle. Velocity control is obtained through preprogrammed pulse-mode firing of the thrusters in synchronism with the spacecraft spin rate. Configuration selection is found to be strongly influenced by the possible error torques induced by uncertainties in thruster operation and installation. The propulsion systems defined are based on maximum use of existing, qualified components. Ground support equipment requirements are defined and system development testing outlined.

  15. Attitude propulsion technology for TOPS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moynihan, P. I.

    1972-01-01

    The thermoelectric outer planet spacecraft (TOPS) attitude propulsion subsystem (APS) effort is discussed. It includes the tradeoff rationale that went into the selection of an anhydrous hydrazine baseline system, followed by a discussion of the 0.22 N thruster and its integration into a portable, self-contained propulsion module that was designed, developed, and man rated to support the TOPS single-axis attitude control tests. The results of a cold-start feasibility demonstration with a modified thruster are presented. A description of three types of 0.44 thrusters that were procured for in-house evaluation is included along with the results of the test program. This is followed by a description of the APS feed system components, their evaluations, and a discussion of an evaluation of elastomeric material for valve seat seals. A list of new technology items which will be of value for application to future systems of this type is included.

  16. Squirming propulsion in viscoelastic fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Corato, Marco; Greco, Francesco; Maffettone, Pier Luca

    2015-11-01

    The locomotion of organisms in Newtonian fluids at low-Reynolds numbers displays very different features from that at large Reynolds numbers; indeed, in this regime the viscous forces are dominant over the inertial ones and propulsion is possible only with non-time-reversible swimming strokes. In many situations of biological interest, however, small organisms are propelling themselves through non-Newtonian fluids such as mucus or biofilms, which display highly viscoelastic properties. Fluid viscoelasticity affects in a complex way both the micro-organisms' swimming velocity and dissipated power, possibly affecting their collective behavior. In our work, we employ the so called ``squirmer'' model to study the motion of spherical ciliated organisms in a viscoelastic fluid. We derive analytical formulas for the squirmer swimming velocity and dissipated power that show a complex interplay between the fluid constitutive behavior and the propulsion mechanism.

  17. An assessment of liquid propulsion in the United States

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mccarty, John P.; Murphy, J. M.

    1989-01-01

    The paper examines the status of liquid propulsion capability and technology in the U.S. today versus where it needs to be to satisfy proposed near and long term goals. Attention is given to four areas of liquid propulsion: earth-to-orbit propulsion, orbital transfer propulsion, on-orbit and planetary propulsion, and advanced propulsion. Recommendations on improving the state of liquid propulsion in the U.S. are presented.

  18. Space Shuttle Propulsion Finishing Strong

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Owen, James W.; Singer, Jody

    2011-01-01

    Numerous lessons have been documented from the Space Shuttle Propulsion elements. Major events include loss of the SRB's on STS-4 and shutdown of an SSME during ascent on STS- 51F. On STS-112 only half the pyrotechnics fired to release the vehicle from the launch pad, a testament for redundancy. STS-91 exhibited freezing of a main combustion chamber pressure measurement and on STS-93 nozzle tube ruptures necessitated a low liquid level oxygen cut off of the main engines. A number of on pad aborts were experienced during the early program resulting in delays. And the two accidents, STS-51L and STS-107, had unique heritage in history from early Program decisions and vehicle configuration. Following STS-51L significant resources were invested in developing fundamental physical understanding of solid rocket motor environments and material system behavior. Human rating of solid rocket motors was truly achieved. And following STS-107, the risk of ascent debris was better characterized and controlled. Situational awareness during all mission phases improved, and the management team instituted effective risk assessment practices. These major events and lessons for the future are discussed. The last 22 flights of the Space Shuttle, following the Columbia accident, were characterized by remarkable improvement in safety and reliability. Numerous problems were solved in addition to reduction of the ascent debris hazard. The propulsion system elements evolved to high reliability and heavy lift capability. The Shuttle system, though not a operable as envisioned in the 1970's, successfully assembled the International Space Station (ISS) and provided significant logistics and down mass for ISS operations. By the end of the Program, the remarkable Space Shuttle Propulsion system achieved very high performance, was largely reusable, exhibited high reliability, and is a heavy lift earth to orbit propulsion system. The story of this amazing system is discussed in detail in the paper.

  19. Magnetic insulation for plasma propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, Dora E.

    1990-01-01

    The design parameters of effective magnetic insulation for plasma engines are discussed. An experimental model used to demonstrate the process of plasma acceleration and magnetic insulation is considered which consists of a copper strap that is wound around a glass tube and connected to a capacitor. In order to adequately model the magnetic insulation mechanisms, a computer algorithm is developed. Plasma engines, with their efficient utilization of the propellant mass, are expected to provide the next-generation advanced propulsion systems.

  20. Quiet powered-lift propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    Latest results of programs exploring new propulsion technology for powered-lift aircraft systems are presented. Topics discussed include results from the 'quiet clean short-haul experimental engine' program and progress reports on the 'quiet short-haul research aircraft' and 'tilt-rotor research aircraft' programs. In addition to these NASA programs, the Air Force AMST YC 14 and YC 15 programs were reviewed.

  1. Nuclear Thermal Propulsion Development Risks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Tony

    2015-01-01

    There are clear advantages of development of a Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) for a crewed mission to Mars. NTP for in-space propulsion enables more ambitious space missions by providing high thrust at high specific impulse ((is) approximately 900 sec) that is 2 times the best theoretical performance possible for chemical rockets. Missions can be optimized for maximum payload capability to take more payload with reduced total mass to orbit; saving cost on reduction of the number of launch vehicles needed. Or missions can be optimized to minimize trip time significantly to reduce the deep space radiation exposure to the crew. NTR propulsion technology is a game changer for space exploration to Mars and beyond. However, 'NUCLEAR' is a word that is feared and vilified by some groups and the hostility towards development of any nuclear systems can meet great opposition by the public as well as from national leaders and people in authority. The public often associates the 'nuclear' word with weapons of mass destruction. The development NTP is at risk due to unwarranted public fears and clear honest communication of nuclear safety will be critical to the success of the development of the NTP technology. Reducing cost to NTP development is critical to its acceptance and funding. In the past, highly inflated cost estimates of a full-scale development nuclear engine due to Category I nuclear security requirements and costly regulatory requirements have put the NTP technology as a low priority. Innovative approaches utilizing low enriched uranium (LEU). Even though NTP can be a small source of radiation to the crew, NTP can facilitate significant reduction of crew exposure to solar and cosmic radiation by reducing trip times by 3-4 months. Current Human Mars Mission (HMM) trajectories with conventional propulsion systems and fuel-efficient transfer orbits exceed astronaut radiation exposure limits. Utilizing extra propellant from one additional SLS launch and available

  2. The 21st century propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haloulakos, V. E.; Boehmer, C.

    1990-01-01

    The prediction of future space travel in the next millennium starts by examining the past and extrapolating into the far future. Goals for the 21st century include expanded space travel and establishment of permanent manned outposts, and representation of Lunar and Mars outposts as the most immediate future in space. Nuclear stage design/program considerations; launch considerations for manned Mars missions; and far future propulsion schemes are outlined.

  3. Deep space laser communications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Biswas, Abhijit; Kovalik, Joseph M.; Srinivasan, Meera; Shaw, Matthew; Piazzolla, Sabino; Wright, Malcolm W.; Farr, William H.

    2016-03-01

    A number of laser communication link demonstrations from near Earth distances extending out to lunar ranges have been remarkably successful, demonstrating the augmented channel capacity that is accessible with the use of lasers for communications. The next hurdle on the path to extending laser communication and its benefits throughout the solar system and beyond is to demonstrate deep-space laser communication links. In this paper, concepts and technology development being advanced at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in order to enable deep-space link demonstrations to ranges of approximately 3 AU in the next decade, will be discussed.

  4. Novel prescribed performance neural control of a flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicle with unknown initial errors.

    PubMed

    Bu, Xiangwei; Wu, Xiaoyan; Zhu, Fujing; Huang, Jiaqi; Ma, Zhen; Zhang, Rui

    2015-11-01

    A novel prescribed performance neural controller with unknown initial errors is addressed for the longitudinal dynamic model of a flexible air-breathing hypersonic vehicle (FAHV) subject to parametric uncertainties. Different from traditional prescribed performance control (PPC) requiring that the initial errors have to be known accurately, this paper investigates the tracking control without accurate initial errors via exploiting a new performance function. A combined neural back-stepping and minimal learning parameter (MLP) technology is employed for exploring a prescribed performance controller that provides robust tracking of velocity and altitude reference trajectories. The highlight is that the transient performance of velocity and altitude tracking errors is satisfactory and the computational load of neural approximation is low. Finally, numerical simulation results from a nonlinear FAHV model demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed strategy.

  5. Critical importance of humidification of the anode in miniature air-breathing polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamel, Simon; Fréchette, Luc G.

    2011-08-01

    Although water management at the cathode is known to be critical in miniature polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (mPEMFCs), this study shows that control of water transport towards the anode is a determining factor to increase air-breathing mPEMFC performances. An analytical 1D model is developed to capture the water transport and water content profile in the membrane. It shows that drying at the anode and flooding at the cathode can happen simultaneously, mainly due to dominant electro-osmotic drag at low cell temperatures. Experimental results demonstrate that injecting water at the anode, at a rate of 3 times the amount produced at the cathode, increases the cell performances at high current densities. By this method, the limiting current and maximum power densities have been raised by 100% and 30% respectively.

  6. Space station propulsion analysis study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Donovan, R. M.; Sovey, J. S.; Hannum, N. B.

    1984-01-01

    This paper summarizes the impacts on the weight, volume and power usage of a manned space station and its 90-day resupply for three integrated, auxiliary propulsion subsystems. The study was performed in coordination with activities of the Space Staton Concept Development Group (CDG). The study focused on three space station propulsion high-low thrust options that make use of fluids that will be available on the manned space station. Specific uses of carbon dioxide, water and cryogen boiloff were considered. For each of the options the increase in station hardware mass and volume to accommodate the dual thrust option is offset by the resupply savings, relative to the reference hydrazine system, after one to several resupplies. Over the life of the station the savings in cost of logistics could be substantial. The three options are examples of alternative technology paths that, because of the opportunity they provide for integration with the environmental control life support system (ECLSS) and OTV propellant storage systems, may reduce the scarring which is required on the early station to meet the increasing propulsion requirements of the growth station.

  7. Antimatter propulsion, status and prospects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howe, Steven D.; Hynes, Michael V.

    1986-01-01

    The use of advanced propulsion techniques must be considered if the currently envisioned launch date of the manned Mars mission were delayed until 2020 or later. Within the next thirty years, technological advances may allow such methods as beaming power to the ship, inertial-confinement fusion, or mass-conversion of antiprotons to become feasible. A propulsion system with an ISP of around 5000 s would allow the currently envisioned mission module to fly to Mars in 3 months and would require about one million pounds to be assembled in Earth orbit. Of the possible methods to achieve this, the antiproton mass-conversion reaction offers the highest potential, the greatest problems, and the most fascination. Increasing the production rates of antiprotons is a high priority task at facilities around the world. The application of antiprotons to propulsion requires the coupling of the energy released in the mass-conversion reaction to thrust-producing mechanisms. Recent proposals entail using the antiprotons to produce inertial confinement fusion or to produce negative muons which can catalyze fusion. By increasing the energy released per antiproton, the effective cost, (dollars/joule) can be reduced. These proposals and other areas of research can be investigated now. These short term results will be important in assessing the long range feasibility of an antiproton powered engine.

  8. Space station propulsion requirements study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilkinson, C. L.; Brennan, S. M.

    1985-01-01

    Propulsion system requirements to support Low Earth Orbit (LEO) manned space station development and evolution over a wide range of potential capabilities and for a variety of STS servicing and space station operating strategies are described. The term space station and the overall space station configuration refers, for the purpose of this report, to a group of potential LEO spacecraft that support the overall space station mission. The group consisted of the central space station at 28.5 deg or 90 deg inclinations, unmanned free-flying spacecraft that are both tethered and untethered, a short-range servicing vehicle, and a longer range servicing vehicle capable of GEO payload transfer. The time phasing for preferred propulsion technology approaches is also investigated, as well as the high-leverage, state-of-the-art advancements needed, and the qualitative and quantitative benefits of these advancements on STS/space station operations. The time frame of propulsion technologies applicable to this study is the early 1990's to approximately the year 2000.

  9. Development of gas exchange and ion regulation in two species of air-breathing fish, Betta splendens and Macropodus opercularis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chun-Yen; Lin, Cheng-Huang; Lin, Hui-Chen

    2015-07-01

    Aquatic air-breathing anabantoids, a group of fish species characterized by the presence of a labyrinth organ and some gills, exhibit morphological variations. This study aimed to examine whether unequal gill growth begins during the early stages and described the sequence of the early gill developmental events in Betta splendens and Macropodus opercularis. To determine when the ion regulatory and gas exchange abilities first appear in the gills, mitochondria-rich cells (MRCs) and neuroepithelial cells (NECs) were examined in young B. splendens. To evaluate the relative importance of the gills and the labyrinth organ under different levels of oxygen uptake stress, the levels of carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) and Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase (NKA) protein expressions in 2 gills and the labyrinth organ were examined in M. opercularis. We found that the first 3 gills developed earlier than the 4th gill in both species, an indication that the morphological variation begins early in life. In B. splendens, the MRCs and NECs clearly appeared in the first 3 gills at 4 dph and were first found in the 4th gill until 11 dph. The oxygen-sensing ability of the gills was concordant with the ionoregulatory function. In M. opercularis, the hypoxic group had a significantly higher air-breathing frequency. CAII protein expression was higher in the labyrinth organ in the hypoxic group. The gills exhibited increased NKA protein expression in the hypoxic and restricted groups, respectively. Functional plasticity in CAII and NKA protein expressions was found between the gills and the labyrinth organ in adult M. opercularis.

  10. Development of gas exchange and ion regulation in two species of air-breathing fish, Betta splendens and Macropodus opercularis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chun-Yen; Lin, Cheng-Huang; Lin, Hui-Chen

    2015-07-01

    Aquatic air-breathing anabantoids, a group of fish species characterized by the presence of a labyrinth organ and some gills, exhibit morphological variations. This study aimed to examine whether unequal gill growth begins during the early stages and described the sequence of the early gill developmental events in Betta splendens and Macropodus opercularis. To determine when the ion regulatory and gas exchange abilities first appear in the gills, mitochondria-rich cells (MRCs) and neuroepithelial cells (NECs) were examined in young B. splendens. To evaluate the relative importance of the gills and the labyrinth organ under different levels of oxygen uptake stress, the levels of carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) and Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase (NKA) protein expressions in 2 gills and the labyrinth organ were examined in M. opercularis. We found that the first 3 gills developed earlier than the 4th gill in both species, an indication that the morphological variation begins early in life. In B. splendens, the MRCs and NECs clearly appeared in the first 3 gills at 4 dph and were first found in the 4th gill until 11 dph. The oxygen-sensing ability of the gills was concordant with the ionoregulatory function. In M. opercularis, the hypoxic group had a significantly higher air-breathing frequency. CAII protein expression was higher in the labyrinth organ in the hypoxic group. The gills exhibited increased NKA protein expression in the hypoxic and restricted groups, respectively. Functional plasticity in CAII and NKA protein expressions was found between the gills and the labyrinth organ in adult M. opercularis. PMID:25783787

  11. Survey of Beamed Energy Propulsion Concepts by the MSFC Space Environmental Effects Team

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gray, P. A.; Nehls, M. K.; Edwards, D. L.; Carruth, M. R., Jr.; Munafo, Paul M. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    This will be a survey paper of work that was performed by the Space Environmental Effects Team at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in the area of laser energy propulsion concepts. Two types of laser energy propulsion techniques were investigated. The first was ablative propulsion, which used a pulsed ruby laser impacting on single layer coatings and films. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the laser power density that produced an optimum coupling coefficient for each type of material tested. A commercial off-the-shelf multi-layer film was also investigated for possible applications in ablative micro-thrusters, and its optimum coupling coefficient was determined. The second type of study measured the purely photonic force provided by a 300W CW YAG laser. In initial studies, the photon force resulting from the momentum of incident photons was measured directly using a vacuum compatible microbalance and these results were compared to theory. Follow-on work used the same CW laser to excite a stable optical cavity for the purpose of amplifying the available force from incident photons.

  12. Survey of Beamed Energy Propulsion Concepts by the MSFC Space Environmental Effects Team

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, P. A.; Nehls, M. K.; Edwards, D. L.; Carruth, M. R.

    2003-05-01

    This is a survey paper of work that was performed by the Space Environmental Effects Team at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in the area of laser energy propulsion concepts. Two techniques for laser energy propulsion were investigated. The first was ablative propulsion, which used a pulsed ruby laser impacting on single layer coatings and films. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the laser power density that produced an optimum coupling coefficient for each type of material tested. A commercial off-the-shelf multilayer film was also investigated for possible applications in ablative micro-thrusters, and its optimum coupling coefficient was determined. The second technique measured the purely photonic force provided by a 300W CW YAG laser. In initial studies, the photon force resulting from the momentum of incident photons was measured directly using a vacuum compatible microbalance and these results were compared to theory. Follow-on work used the same CW laser to excite a stable optical cavity for the purpose of amplifying the available force from incident photons.

  13. An Overview of Brazilian Developments in Beamed Energy Aerospace Propulsion and Vehicle Performance Control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minucci, M. A. S.

    2008-04-01

    Beamed energy propulsion and beamed energy vehicle performance control concepts are equally promising and challenging. In Brazil, the two concepts are being currently investigated at the Prof Henry T Nagamatsu Laboratory of Aerothermodynamics and Hypersonics, of the Institute for Advanced Studies—IEAv, in collaboration with the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute—RPI, Troy, NY, and the United States Air force Research Laboratory-AFRL. Until recently, only laser energy addition for hypersonic flow control was being investigated at the Laboratory using a 0.3 m nozzle exit diameter hypersonic shock tunnel, T2, and two 7 joule CO2 TEA lasers. Flow visualization, model pressure and heat flux measurements of the laser energy addition perturbed flow around a model were produced as a result of this joint IEAv-RPI investigation. Presently, with the participation of AFRL and the newly commissioned 0.6 m. nozzle exit diameter hypersonic shock tunnel, T3, a more ambitious project is underway. Two 400 Joule Lumonics 620 CO2 TEA lasers will deliver a 20 cm X 25 cm propulsive laser beam to a complete laser propelled air breather/rocket hypersonic engine, located inside T3 test section. Schlieren photographs of the flow inside de engine as well as surface and heat flux measurements will be performed for free stream Mach numbers ranging from 6 to 25. The present paper discusses past, present and future Brazilian activities on beamed energy propulsion and related technologies.

  14. An Overview of Brazilian Developments in Beamed Energy Aerospace Propulsion and Vehicle Performance Control

    SciTech Connect

    Minucci, M. A. S.

    2008-04-28

    Beamed energy propulsion and beamed energy vehicle performance control concepts are equally promising and challenging. In Brazil, the two concepts are being currently investigated at the Prof Henry T Nagamatsu Laboratory of Aerothermodynamics and Hypersonics, of the Institute for Advanced Studies--IEAv, in collaboration with the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute--RPI, Troy, NY, and the United States Air force Research Laboratory-AFRL. Until recently, only laser energy addition for hypersonic flow control was being investigated at the Laboratory using a 0.3 m nozzle exit diameter hypersonic shock tunnel, T2, and two 7 joule CO{sub 2} TEA lasers. Flow visualization, model pressure and heat flux measurements of the laser energy addition perturbed flow around a model were produced as a result of this joint IEAv-RPI investigation. Presently, with the participation of AFRL and the newly commissioned 0.6 m. nozzle exit diameter hypersonic shock tunnel, T3, a more ambitious project is underway. Two 400 Joule Lumonics 620 CO{sub 2} TEA lasers will deliver a 20 cm X 25 cm propulsive laser beam to a complete laser propelled air breather/rocket hypersonic engine, located inside T3 test section. Schlieren photographs of the flow inside de engine as well as surface and heat flux measurements will be performed for free stream Mach numbers ranging from 6 to 25. The present paper discusses past, present and future Brazilian activities on beamed energy propulsion and related technologies.

  15. Assessment of flying-quality criteria for air-breathing aerospacecraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcruer, Duane T.; Myers, Thomas T.; Hoh, Roger H.; Ashkenas, Irving L.; Johnston, Donald E.

    1992-01-01

    A study of flying quality requirements for air breathing aerospacecraft gives special emphasis to the unusual operational requirements and characteristics of these aircraft, including operation at hypersonic speed. The report considers distinguishing characteristics of these vehicles, including dynamic deficiencies and their implications for control. Particular emphasis is given to the interaction of the airframe and propulsion system, and the requirements for dynamic systems integration. Past operational missions are reviewed to define tasks and maneuvers to be considered for this class of aircraft. Areas of special concern with respect to vehicle dynamics and control are identified. Experience with the space shuttle orbiter is reviewed with respect to flight control system mechanization and flight experience in approach and landing flying qualities for the National Aerospace Plane (NASP).

  16. Nonpropulsive applications of ion beams. [electric propulsion technology utilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hudson, W. R.

    1976-01-01

    This paper describes the results of an investigation of the nonpropulsive applications of electric propulsion technology. Eight centimeter ion beam sources utilizing xenon and argon have been developed that operate over a wide range of beam energies and currents. Three types of processes have been studied - sputter deposition, ion beam machining, and ion beam surface texturing. The broad range of source operating conditions allows optimum sputter deposition of various materials. An ion beam source has also been used to ion mill laser reflection holograms using photoresist patterns on silicon. Ion beam texturing has been tried with many materials and has a multitude of potential applications.

  17. Propulsion System Models for Rotorcraft Conceptual Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Wayne

    2014-01-01

    The conceptual design code NDARC (NASA Design and Analysis of Rotorcraft) was initially implemented to model conventional rotorcraft propulsion systems, consisting of turboshaft engines burning jet fuel, connected to one or more rotors through a mechanical transmission. The NDARC propulsion system representation has been extended to cover additional propulsion concepts, including electric motors and generators, rotor reaction drive, turbojet and turbofan engines, fuel cells and solar cells, batteries, and fuel (energy) used without weight change. The paper describes these propulsion system components, the architecture of their implementation in NDARC, and the form of the models for performance and weight. Requirements are defined for improved performance and weight models of the new propulsion system components. With these new propulsion models, NDARC can be used to develop environmentally-friendly rotorcraft designs.

  18. Components of the Solar Thermal Propulsion Engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    Researchers at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have designed, fabricated, and tested the first solar thermal engine, a non-chemical rocket engine that produces lower thrust but has better thrust efficiency than a chemical combustion engine. This photograph shows components for the thermal propulsion engine being laid out prior to assembly. MSFC turned to solar thermal propulsion in the early 1990s due to its simplicity, safety, low cost, and commonality with other propulsion systems. As part of MSFC's Space Transportation Directorate, the Propulsion Research Center serves as a national resource for research of advanced, revolutionary propulsion technologies. The mission is to move the Nation's capabilities beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of aircraft-like access to Earth-orbit, rapid travel throughout the solar system, and exploration of interstellar space.

  19. Rotational spectroscopy at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drouin, Brian J.

    2005-01-01

    Environmental monitoring, atmospheric remote sensing and astrophysical studies promoted by NASA require a strong basis of spectroscopic information. The rotational spectroscopy capabilities at NASAs Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) are currently maintained for the measurement of key mission priorities that enable modeling and retrieval of geophysical data from the atmosphere as well as validation of the space-borne instruments in the Earth Observing System, particularly the Microwave Limb Sounder. Rotational spectra are measured using a variety of spectroscopic techniques including pulsed-beam Fourier transform microwave spectroscopy (at CalTech); millimeter wavelength Stark spectroscopy; millimeter, submillimeter and THz FM spectroscopy; laser sideband spectroscopy and Fourier Transform far-infrared spectroscopy. Remote measurements of atmospheric rotational spectra are made using two limb-sounder instruments in the submillimeter and THz. Recent advances in the direct synthesis of THz radiation that enable more efficient laboratory science will be presented. Software for comprehensive and systematic study of different molecular systems is maintained at JPL, the software is freely available via http://spec.jpl.nasa.gov and is used by our group to create and sustain the JPL spectral line catalog also available online.

  20. Solar Electric Propulsion Technology Development for Electric Propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mercer, Carolyn R.; Kerslake, Thomas W.; Scheidegger, Robert J.; Woodworth, Andrew A.; Lauenstein, Jean-Marie

    2015-01-01

    NASA is developing technologies to prepare for human exploration missions to Mars. Solar electric propulsion (SEP) systems are expected to enable a new cost effective means to deliver cargo to the Mars surface. Nearer term missions to Mars moons or near-Earth asteroids can be used to both develop and demonstrate the needed technology for these future Mars missions while demonstrating new capabilities in their own right. This presentation discusses recent technology development accomplishments for high power, high voltage solar arrays and power management that enable a new class of SEP missions.