Transpiration Cooling Assisted Ablative Thermal Protection of Aerospace Substructures
Ablatives are heat-shielding materials used to protect aerospace substructures. These materials are sacrificial in nature and provide protection primarily through the large endothermic transformation during exposure to hyper thermal environment such as encountered in re-entry modules. The performance of certain ablatives was reported in terms of their TGA/DTA in Advanced Materials-97 (pp57-65) (1). The focus of this earlier research resided in the consolidation of interface between the refractory inclusion and the host polymeric matrix to improve thermal resistance. In the present work we explore the scope of transpiration cooling in ablative performance through flash evaporation of liquid incorporated in the host EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) matrix. The compression-molded specimens were exposed separately to plasma flame (15000 C) and oxyacetylene torch (3000 C) and the back face transient temperature is recorded in situ employing a thermocouple/data logger system. Both head on impingement (HOI) and parallel flow (PF) through a central cavity in the ablator were used. It is observed that transpiration cooling is effective and yields (a) rapid thermal equilibrium in the specimen, (b) lower back face temperature and (c) lower ablation rate, compared to conventional ablatives. SEM/EDS analysis is presented to amplify the point.
Shaheed Khan, Iftikhar us Salam and Karim Ahmed
M. B. Khan et al., "Transpiration Cooling Assisted Ablative Thermal Protection of Aerospace Substructures", Key Engineering Materials, Vol. 442, pp. 34-40, 2010