Journal of Astronautics ›› 2015, Vol. 36 ›› Issue (4): 383-389.doi: 10.3873/j.issn.1000-1328.2015.04.003

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Hypersonic Flow Field Prediction and Aerodynamics Analysis for MSL Entry Capsule

YANG Xiao feng, TANG Wei, GUI Ye wei   

  1. State Key Laboratory of Aerodynamics, China Aerodynamics Research and Development Center, Mianyang 621000,China
  • Received:2014-03-13 Revised:2014-06-24 Online:2015-04-15 Published:2015-04-25


Complex lifting entry is selected for precise landing performance during the mars science laboratory (MSL) entry. This study aims to numerically simulate the hypersonic Martian flow by using the effective specific heat ratio method and to ascertain the capsule aerodynamic characteristics. Numerical computation results show that the shock layer is thin because of lower effective specific heat ratio and that both surface pressure and shear stress agree well with the reference. Aerodynamic performance analysis shows that CG location determines trim characteristics and pitch statical stability, and reasonable radial and axial shift of the CG location can alter the capsule lifting entry performance, which is of vital significance for the aerodynamic configuration design and inner instrument layout of the Mars entry capsule.

Key words: Mars entry capsule, Aerodynamics analysis, Computational fluid dynamics, Hypersonic flow

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