Title:
Supersonic Vehicle Configuration Transitions to Enable Supersonic Retropropulsion during Mars Entry, Descent, and Landing

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Blette, David J.
Braun, Robert D.
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Abstract
This paper investigates types of supersonic vehicle configuration transition events necessary to initiation supersonic retropropulsion as part of human-class Mars entry, descent, and landing. This research assumes an entry vehicle with a 105 mT entry mass and an ellipsled aeroshell similar to the NASA EDL Design Reference Architecture 5.0. All entry architectures are assumed all-propulsive. Three transition architectures are considered: a pitch-around maneuver, an aeroshell front-exit, and an aeroshell hinged-exit. Propulsive subsystem thrust requirements are defined for the pitch-around maneuver. For transitions involving solid mass ejections, debris flight envelopes are determined and compared to a descent vehicle trajectory under a modified gravity turn. It is shown that far-field recontact risks exist for the proposed architectures involving solid mass ejections and recontact mitigation schemes are required.
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2016-03
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