Centre for Hypersonics

2013 - 2015   The science of scramjet propulsion
Abstract:   We will produce laboratory test conditions that simulate the highest speeds at which scramjets might eventually fly, and develop the underlying scientific knowledge required to reach the ultimate limits of the viable flight envelope. The significance of the work lies in the family of advanced flight vehicles which will be enabled by the knowledge and experimental validation which will be gained, and the reinforcement of Australia's world leading position in hypersonics. The primary outcomes will be fundamental technical understanding of how the mixing, ignition and combustion processes occur and can be controlled at high Mach numbers, and an extensive data base of experimental data at conditions not previously obtainable.

Researchers:    Morgan, R. G.
Mcintyre, T. J.
 Smart, M. K.
 Veeraragavan, A.
 Jahn, I.
 Tirtey, S.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Research Council
Total Funding:   $ 550,000

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2013 - 2013   Improving scramjet performance to enable more economical and reliable access to space
Researchers:    Wheatley, V.
Funding Bodies:   University of Queensland
Total Funding:   $ 20,000

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2012 - 2014   Flow physics of porous wall fuel injection for scramjet combustion and drag reduction
Abstract:   Combining experiments and numerical simulations, this project will explore the fundamental phenomena and range of applicability of scramjet fuel injection through advanced porous high temperature materials - potentially transformational technology for simultaneous thrust production, drag reduction and thermal protection for sustained scramjet flight. Advances in scramjet propulsion, a niche area of Australian excellence, rely on such research to explore the limits of the technology, which promises safer, more reliable and economical access to space. The research will thus contribute to Australia's international space credentials, and in turn to secure and assured access to the space-based applications upon which we heavily depend.

Researchers:   Boyce, R. R.
 Mee, D. J.
Hald, H.
Kuhn, M.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Research Council
Total Funding:   $ 320,000

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2012 - 2014   Ablative thermal protection systems
Abstract:   The aims of this proposal are to perform a series of experiments on models of ablating reentry heat shields, and to develop and validate associated theoretical modeling and analysis tools. The experiments will target the atmospheres of earth, Mars, Venus, Titan and the gas giants. The output will form a resource of calibrated experimental data and analysis tools which will form a benchmark for the design of the advanced hypervelocity flight vehicles which are currently foreshadowed by the space community. Without the detailed understanding which such research creates, these vehicles have to be designed with large safety factors in the thermal protection systems, the mass penalty of which severely limits their function.

Researchers:    Morgan, R. G.
 Mcintyre, T. J.
Buttsworth, D. R.
Mudford, N. R. N. R.
Laux, C. O.
Greendyke, R.
Loehle, S.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Research Council
Total Funding:   $ 540,000

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2012 - 2014   The Converging Shock Driven Richtmyer-Meshkov Instability in Magnetohydrodynamics
Abstract:   In inertial confinement fusion, which promises carbon-free energy production, the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability is driven by a spherically converging shock impacting on near spherical interfaces. If uncontrolled, this instability limits the chance of energy production. We have shown that in magnetohydrodynamics, the planar shock driven instability can be suppressed by a magnetic field. The effects of a magnetic field on both the instability in a spherical geometry and the surrounding flow have yet to be investigated. We propose to carry out a fundamental computational study of the converging shock driven instability in the presence of a magnetic field. The outcome of this study will be a detailed understanding of the resulting flow.

Researchers:    Wheatley, V.
Pullin, D. I.
Samtaney, R.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Research Council
Total Funding:   $ 120,000

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2012 - 2015   The General Richtmyer-Meshkov Instability in Magnetohydrodynamics
Abstract:   The Richtmyer-Meshkov instability plays a key role in inertial confinement fusion, which promises carbon-free energy production, fuel-air mixing in scramjets and astrophysical phenomena. The fluids involved may be ionized and thus affected by magnetic fields. For two highly idealized situations, it has been shown that the instability can be suppressed by a magnetic field, which may be of great benefit. We propose to investigate the instability for the full range of magnetic field orientations that may occur, and to study the effects of finite conductivity and viscosity. Both theoretical modelling and state-of-the-art numerical simulation will be utilized. The result will be a greatly broadened knowledge of this important instability.

Researchers:    Wheatley, V.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Research Council
Total Funding:   $ 375,000

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2010 - 2013   SCRAMSPACE - Scramjet Access to Space
Abstract: The SCRAMSPACE project was established with $5 million Commonwealth funding through the Australian Space Research Program. The project forms the hub of a capability for ongoing scramjet flight programs to contribute to the talent pool for future flight tests and the Australian space and aerospace industry. It has already achieved success in this with a cohort of highly talented people assembled to work on the project. By addressing key scientific and technological questions, the consortium is conducting a flight-test of a free-flying scramjet at Mach 8, and ground-tests at up to Mach 14.

Researchers: Boyce, R.R.
Funding Bodies:   Australian Space Research Program
Total Funding:   $ 5,000,000

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2008 - 2014   High temperance materials for hyper and supersonic flight (DMTC)
Researchers:    Dargusch, M. S.
 Smart, M. K.
 Drennan, J.
Funding Bodies:   Defence Materials Technology Centre
University Of Queensland
Total Funding:   $ 369,578

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2006 - 2014   Scramjet development from research to prototyping
Abstract:   Queensland is poised to be the home of an exciting new aerospace industry based on UQ's successful HyShot Flight Program. The scramjet technology developed in this program is a 'disruptive technology' that will change our approach to transportation. It is at a level of development between the fundamental and the prototyping statge. The project will couple the talenst of UQ and Boeing Australia, with the assistance of the DSTO to develop advanced scramjet designs and undertake prolonged flight tests at speeds of 8000 km/hr to allow the alliance partners to engage in major international fundamental and prototyping activities.

Researchers:    Smart, M. K.
 Paull, A.
Bowcutt, K. G.
Funding Bodies:   Queensland Government Smart State National and International Research Alliances Program
The Boeing Company
Total Funding:   $ 3,700,000

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