The Future of Planetary Entry Technology

  • Park, Chul (Department of Aerospace Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology)
  • Published : 2011.09.30


This is a written version of an hour-long lecture delivered by the author on June 30, 2011, as Plasmadynamics and Lasers Award Lecture at the AIAA 2011 summer conference in Honolulu, Hawaii. The author proposes that two areas of planetary entry physics be pursued in the future: outer planet aero-capturing and study of aerodynamics of meteoroid entries, both for the purpose of advancing the understanding of the possible extraterrestrial seeding of building blocks of life. For outer planet aero-capturing, the author proposes to develop new shock tube facilities that will produce up to 30 km/s of shock speed without causing photo-ionization of the driven gas by the radiation from the hot driver gas. Regarding meteors, the author proposes to carry out laboratory testing of the Tunguska event and of the seeding of amino acid molecules using a ballistic range which shoots a snowball laden with amino acid molecules toward a water surface.


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