Grsound test investigation on a thermal protection system junction

F. Panerai, J. Thoemel, O. Chazot

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


During the atmospheric reentry of a spacecraft, the dissociated flow around its Thermal Protection System (TPS) could travel from a low catalytic to a high catalytic surface. In this situation a peak of heat flux is experienced at the junction between the two materials. A safe vehicle design cannot preclude investigations on such a phenomenon, since the consequent heating could be harmful for the integrity of TPS. The present work finds its framework on the EXPERT (European eXPErimental Re-entry Testbed) project. The EXPERT vehicle TPS is composed of a C/SiC nose and a PM1000 skirt, so that a catalytic transition occurs in correspondence of their junction. Experiments on wall catalysis phenomena over Thermal Protection Materials (TPM) are performed in this project, using the von Karman Institute (VKI) induction-coupled plasma generator (Plasmatron), under operating conditions representative for real flight situation. Infrared thermography and pyrometry temperature measurements are performed in order to experimentally prove and quantify the transition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 6th European Symposium on Aerothermodynamics for Space Vehicles
StatePublished - Jun 17 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event6th European Symposium Aerothermodynamics for Space Vehicles - Versailles, France
Duration: Nov 3 2008Nov 6 2008

Publication series

NameEuropean Space Agency, (Special Publication) ESA SP
Volume659 SP
ISSN (Print)0379-6566


Other6th European Symposium Aerothermodynamics for Space Vehicles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science


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