Performance analysis of non-coplanar synergetic maneuvers
Spriesterbach, Thomas P.
Ross, I. Michael
Shreeve, Raymond P.
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Maneuvers employing atmospheric forces to assist in orbital changes hold potential for significant fuel savings over purely exoatmospheric propulsive methods. The term synergetic has been coined to describe to combination of propulsive and atmospheric forces used by a maneuvering flight vehicle. This thesis concentrates on non-coplanar synergetic maneuvers using two different control methods for various lifting bodies over a range of heating rates and orbital speeds. The objective of this thesis is to study the aerocruise and aerobang maneuvers. the aerocruise maneuver has been studied for more that twenty years and is commonly thought to be the fuel-optimal solution to a maneuver flown at a constant heating rate. A new maneuver, the aerobang, has recently laid doubt as to the optimality of the aerocruise maneuver. The aerobang maneuver demonstrates the ability to yield a higher inclination change for a given amount of fuel as compared to the aerocruise maneuver. Within this thesis a computer code is developed to model both the aerobang and aerocruise maneuvers. It is shown that there exist flight regimes where the aerobang method is superior to the aerocruise method.
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