Comparison of theory with experiment for the bow shock ultraviolet rocket flight

D. A. Levin, G. V. Candler, R. J. Collins, P. W. Erdman, E. Zipf, P. Espy, C. Howlett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Comparison is made between the results obtained from a state-of-the-art thermochemical nonequilibrium flowfield and radiation code and data obtained from a recent experiment. The experiment obtained the first measurements of ultraviolet radiation from the shock-heated gas in the nose region of a 0.1016-m nose radius vehicle traveling at about 3.5 km/s at altitudes between 37-75 km. The preflight computations agree at low altitudes but underpredict the data at high altitudes. Postflight flowfield and radiation sensitivity studies suggest improvements for the models at high altitudes. Specifically, excitation mechanisms that contribute to production of NO gamma-band emission need to be revised. Altitude dependence of the radiation observed from the OH radical can be understood in terms of nonequilibrium chemistry in the flow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)30-36
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of thermophysics and heat transfer
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
  • Space and Planetary Science


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