Tech Briefs

AFRL develops a new aerodynamic analysis program.

Dr. Gregg Abate, an AFRL exchange engineer, developed a new method for determining aeroballistic parameters from projectile flight data. Assigned to the Fraunhofer Institute for High-Speed Dynamics (commonly known as the Ernst-Mach Institute), Freiburg, Germany, Dr. Abate was a participant in the AFRL-managed Engineer and Scientist Exchange Program, a Department of Defense effort to promote international cooperation in military research, development, and acquisition through the exchange of defense engineers and scientists.

AeroSolve integrates projectile flight data from four sources to determine aeroballistic parameters.
To perform traditional aeroballistic data analysis, scientists use free-flight spark ranges. Using these facilities, they measure the position and attitude of a projectile as a function of time and derive resultant aeroballistic parameters by matching integrated equations of motion to the measured data. As a result of recent advances in both the area of radar technology and that of onboard sensors, in particular, analysts can now directly measure linear and angular accelerations, velocities, and/or positions of a projectile in free flight. Despite these advances, however, accurate determination of aeroballistic parameters still requires analysts to model aerodynamic coefficients and stability derivatives in order to match the integrated equations of motion with an observed trajectory.