Journal of Astronautics ›› 2015, Vol. 36 ›› Issue (12): 1348-1355.doi: 10.3873/j.issn.1000-1328.2015.12.002

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Modeling and Analysis of Solar Array Aerothermodynamics During Large Scale Spacecraft Reentry

LIANG Jie, LI Zhi hui, DU Bo qiang, FANG Ming   

  1. Hypervelocity Aerodynamics Institute,China Aerodynamics Research and Development Center, Mianyang 621000, China
  • Received:2015-02-12 Revised:2015-03-26 Online:2015-12-15 Published:2015-12-25


The direct simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method is used to simulate aerodynamic force and aero-heating applied on solar array panels in rarefied transitional regime during large-scale spacecraft deorbit and atmospheric reentry. The hybrid Cartesian grids and surface unstructured triangular cells are employed with the self-adaptive technique to deal with the complex configuration flows. Internal energy excitations and chemical reactions are considered to simulate aero-heating precisely. The huge amount of computing memory is resolved by the DSMC parallel algorithm based on MPI environment. The computational analysis of complicated flow properties are performed in different altitudes and angles of attack for solar array horizontally and perpendicularly mounted respectively. Results show that more stronger and complex interactions of shock/shock and shock/boundary layer above 90 km altitude are happened between top bow detached shock wave and solar array detached shock wave when the solar array is perpendicularly mounted. Perpendicularly mounted solar array is more easily torn and separated from the spacecraft than horizontally mounted solar array under the dual aerodynamic force and heating interactions.

Key words: Large-scale spacecraft, Solar array, Deorbit and reentry, Rarefied regime, Aerothermodynamics, Direct simulation Monte Carlo method

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