Characterization of Material Response During Arc-Jet Testing with Optical Methods Status and Perspectives
- Winter, Michael
- February 28, 2012.
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- The characterization of ablation and recession of heat shield materials during arc jet testing is an important step towards understanding the governing processes during these tests and therefore for a successful extrapolation of ground test data to flight. The behavior of ablative heat shield materials in a ground-based arc jet facility is usually monitored through measurement of temperature distributions (across the surface and in-depth), and through measurement of the final surface recession. These measurements are then used to calibrate/validate materials thermal response codes, which have mathematical models with reasonably good fidelity to the physics and chemistry of ablation, and codes thus calibrated are used for predicting material behavior in flight environments. However, these thermal measurements only indirectly characterize the pyrolysis processes within an ablative material pyrolysis is the main effect during ablation. Quantification of pyrolysis chemistry would therefore provide more definitive and useful data for validation of the material response codes. Information of the chemical products of ablation, to various levels of detail, can be obtained using optical methods. Suitable optical methods to measure the shape and composition of these layers (with emphasis on the blowing layer) during arc jet testing are: 1) optical emission spectroscopy (OES) 2) filtered imaging 3) laser induced fluorescence (LIF) and 4) absorption spectroscopy. Several attempts have been made to optically measure the material response of ablative materials during arc-jet testing. Most recently, NH and OH have been identified in the boundary layer of a PICA ablator. These species are suitable candidates for a detection through PLIF which would enable a spatially-resolved characterization of the blowing layer in terms of both its shape and composition. The recent emission spectroscopy data will be presented and future experiments for a qualitative and quantitative characterization of the material response of ablative materials during arc-jet testing will be discussed.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20120011156.
5th Ablation Workshop; 28 Feb. - 1 Mar. 2012; Lexington, KY; United States.
- Copyright, Distribution under U.S. Government purpose rights.
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