A method was developed of obtaining propulsive base flow data in both hot and cold jet environments, at Mach numbers and altitude of relevance to NASA launcher designs. The base flow data was used to perform computational fluid dynamics (CFD) turbulence model assessments of base flow predictive capabilities in order to provide increased confidence in base thermal and pressure load predictions obtained from computational modeling efforts. Predictive CFD analyses were used in the design of the experiments, available propulsive models were used to reduce program costs and increase success, and a wind tunnel facility was used.

The data obtained allowed assessment of CFD/turbulence models in a complex flow environment, working within a building-block procedure to validation, where cold, non-reacting test data was first used for validation, followed by more complex reacting base flow validation.

This work was done by Neeraj Sinha and Kevin Brinckman of Combustion Research and Flow Technology, and Bernard Jansen and John Seiner of the University of Mississippi for Marshall Space Flight Center. For more information, contact Sammy Nabors, MSFC Commercialization Assistance Lead, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. MFS-32779-1

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the December, 2011 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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