ESA awards 2010 EXPERT re-entry demonstrator vehicle contract

by | Jul 17, 2009 | ESA, Technology | 0 comments

The European Space Agency has just this minute released this information with an invite to media to attend the Thales Alenia Space Italy contract signing event – it is on Monday

Set for launch in 2010, the data collected by the European Experimental Reentry Testbed (EXPERT) will provide aero-thermodynamic tool validation on the basis of actual flight data for a number of physical phenomena encountered by space transportation vehicles during their re-entry phase in the Earth atmosphere. It will also improve the European competence in the atmospheric re-entry field and associated technologies.

Developing improved space transportation systems requires an increased confidence in the knowledge of such phenomena and a reduction of the design margins to increase system performance. The availability of detailed experimental data will allow the refinement of the aerodynamic and aero-thermodynamic models and project tools.

EXPERT is conceived to provide these data through a low cost in-flight experimentation.

The EXPERT vehicle consists of:

– a cold structure that hosts the avionic equipment and payload electronics,

– a thermal protection system, which is also a hot structure,

– power and data handling subsystems,

– a parachute system to ensure a soft landing of the vehicle,

– an inertial measurement unit.

The payload will entail a series of scientific flight measurement equipment, including classic and advanced techniques such as temperature, heat flux and pressure sensors, spectrometers and an infrared camera.

Such experiments are being developed in cooperation by ESA and a number of scientific institutes across Europe and represent the state of the art in this technology.

The EXPERT trajectory and re-entry velocity of 5 km/sec have been defined to achieve a flight environment compatible with the generation of the physical phenomena under study while matching the performance envelops of the European wind tunnels, thereby allowing a comparison of ground and flight data.

The measurements derived from the EXPERT mission and the design methodologies employed for its development will be of great help for the understanding of the aero-thermodynamics and the design of future European atmospheric re-entry missions, e.g. the Advanced Re-entry Vehicle (ARV).

The EXPERT development is conducted under the responsibility of the ESA Human Spaceflight Directorate by an integrated team including specialists from the ESA Directorate of Technical and Quality Management.

The contract will be signed by Simonetta Di Pippo, ESA Director of Human Spaceflight, and Luigi Pasquali, President and CEO of Thales Alenia Space Italy, at ESA’s centre for Earth observation, ESRIN, in Frascati, Italy.

Presentations of the project and its objectives will be made by TAS-I and ESA experts.

You will find more detailled information on the Expert project through the following links:

http://www.esa.int/esaTQM/SEMNGZ4DHNF_mechanical_0.html

http://www.esa.int/esapub/bulletin/bullet114/chapter4_bul114.pdf

http://www.esa.int/esaHS/SEMJNO916XF_index_0.html

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to www.seradata.com/spacetrak

Related Articles

French company Gama contracts NanoAvionics to build its first satellite

[caption id="attachment_110191" align="alignright" width="309"] The mission logo for GAMA ALPHA. Courtesy of Gama[/caption] A French start-up Gama has contracted NanoAvionics Read more

Telesat moves to smaller LEO comsat constellation as it demos its signals over India

While its competitors seem determined to add ever more numbers to their proposed or under construction satellite constellations, satellite operator Read more

Rocket Lab’s Electron launches 34 sats but helicopter snag/landing of first-stage only partially works

On its launch from the Onenui Station on Mahia peninsula, New Zealand on 2 May 2022 an Electron KS rocket Read more

Satellite 2022: Some launch providers looking forward to this year, others into next

  During the Satellite 2022 conference we were provided with plans for this year from some American launch providers. Rocket Read more

Interview: Exotrail CEO Jean-Luc Maria discusses plans for the future and OTV aspirations

When Seradata was offered an interview with Jean-Luc Maria, Co-founder and CEO Exotrail, we were intrigued, not least because we Read more

Further fallout from Russo-Ukraine war on aerospace industry

While the main effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine have already become apparent, most noticeably by the cancellation of Read more

Northrop Grumman’s Space Logistics outlines plans for MRV satellite servicing mission in 2024

SpaceLogistics, a subsidiary of American manufacturer Northrop Grumman, announced its plans for launching its  MRV satellite on 21 February. The Read more

NASA launches DART asteroid deflection mission

Hollywood’s disaster movie genre has long been keen on the theme of the Earth being threatened by the imminent impact Read more

Categories

Archives