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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Innovative Reduced Mass TPS Designs for Human-Rated Aeroassit Vehicles, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Innovative Reduced Mass TPS Designs for Human-Rated Aeroassit Vehicles, Phase I
This proposal addresses Item #2 of Topic X7.04 Aeroassist Systems and proposes innovative heat shield thermal protection systems (TPS) designs for human-rated aeroassist vehicles returning to Earth from the Moon and Mars. The proposed designs 1) utilize concepts with and without outer ablator materials, 2) employ outer refractory composite material rib-stiffened aeroshells with low emissivity foils on their internal structure to trap the heat and act like a high thermal resistance material, similar to multi-layer insulation but which have the potential to be less complex and less dense, and 3) make use of re-usable refractory composite materials that will be non-parasitic and structurally functional within the heat shield, thereby offering the promise of significantly reducing TPS mass fraction. The following will briefly describe the base heat shield used in Apollo Command Module and discuss the two alternative concepts and why they are advantageous. More »

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.