Numerical Computations of MHD Flow on Hypersonic and Re-Entry Vehicles
Paper in proceedings, 2016

In hypersonic flight of reentry vehicles the radio blackout is a typical problem, in particular because it arises during a critical mission operation point. To mitigate this radio blackout the magnetic window concept is proposed. In this work a numerical model is presented to accurately simulate the effect of a magnetic field interacting with ionized plasma surrounding the vehicle. The numerical model is based on the MHD flow equations. Initially, the code is validated for pure hypersonic gas dynamics. Diverse high resolution spatial discretisation schemes, within a Finite Volume framework, are analyzed for robustness. Afterwards, the numerical code is further validated for MHD flows using the well-known Hartmann case. A very good comparison between numerical and analytical results is verified. This allows a proper validation of the method in terms of Lorentz force, in particular under low-magnetic Reynolds number conditions. A very tough test-case is finally computed, being typical of a reentry capsule geometry. The accuracy of the model is then verified for different applied magnetic fields.


F. Dias

University of Beira Interior

José Páscoa

University of Beira Interior

Carlos Xisto

Chalmers, Applied Mechanics, Fluid Dynamics

Proceedings of the ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition (IMECE2016)

Vol. 1 Paper No. IMECE2016-65676

Subject Categories

Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics



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