Saturday, July 20, 2024

Towards reusable vehicles with the AMACA project


Reducing the costs of access to space thanks to the use of reusable spacecraft is one of the goals of the AM project3air conditioner2a (aApproaching MMulti-band l MSinging from Materiali CMC and UHTMCC for each CReusable components foraerospazio), which has taken important steps towards developing vehicles capable of safely carrying out multiple space missions without the need for advanced inspection and maintenance procedures, over a course of research spanning more than three years.

AMACA has identified experimental and numerical methods to develop thermal structures in ceramic composites (carbon fibers in a ceramic matrix), capable of withstanding high temperatures (1000 °C ÷ 2000 °C), i.e. in typical conditions for return from space missions, and for hypersonic systems. Flight and propulsion.

The analyzed materials allow us to create today’s extremely light and rigid structures, with damage-tolerance properties that are far superior to those of ordinary ceramics.

The AMACA project was funded by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) jointly by the Polytechnic University of Milan; CIRA, Italian Center for Aerospace Research; ISSMC, Institute of Science, Technology and Sustainability for Ceramic Materials Development of CNR and Petroceramics SpA

The AMACA was characterized, designed and subjected to tests in a simulated environment of the hypersonic reentry stage, several samples and structural elements, at the CIRA laboratories and the Federico II University of Naples.

The project has improved understanding, through an extensive campaign of experimental testing, of damage and fracture mechanisms that can threaten the integrity of structures, and has developed tools to predict them, through numerical models that allow virtual tests to be carried out under challenging conditions. Equivalent conditions of operation. Thanks to these tools, structures can be designed to ensure their safety even in the presence of damage caused by thermal and mechanical stresses in the most critical stages of missions, such as re-entry. Therefore, AMACA has achieved significant results for extending the damage-tolerance-based design philosophy, now commonly adopted in aerospace construction, to include reusable spacecraft structures made of innovative materials.

See also  Italy prepares for stratospheric drone - space and astronomy

Important results have been achieved in studying the effects of thermal stresses on the behavior of materials and sheet delamination. Tolerance to shock and oxidation damage was also studied through the use of experimental protocols and by evaluating the performance of the components after exposure to them in CIRA plasma tunnels, which are among the most advanced in the world.

Thus, the results confirm that these materials offer a tangible possibility to develop lightweight, damage-tolerant aerothermal structures and provide digital models of the materials capable of supporting their design by reducing development costs and increasing safety.

Swing project

Continue reading on MeteoWeb


More like this

US and China launch new space race from Moon

China's entry into the sceneWe are no different today....

“I had a purple spleen and liver. Now we need to do more tests.”

These are not easy days for you. David...