Tools

Belstead Research provides a number of high performance engineering simulation codes covering all aspects of atmospheric vehicle entry. This includes trajectory generation, vehicle break-up, fragment demise and casualty assessment:

  • RCR - re-entry casualty risk analysis. RCR combines the ATS6, ATS3, AHM, VFM and DCS modules to provide an integrated, fast, accurate, state-of-the-art probabilistic engineering assessment of the on-ground casualty risk from a destructive re-entry. It is ideally suited to early stage vehicle design analysis.
  • SAM - spacecraft aerothermal model. Developed in conjunction with Fluid Gravity Engineering, as part of an ESA GSP contract, SAM makes use of ATS3, AHM and VFM to deliver state-of-the-art aerothermal evaluation within an engineering re-entry code. This code is currently used at ESA-ESTEC within the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF).
  • TRF - time risk framework. During the final week of orbit decay, TRF identifies the distinct periods within the overall uncertainty window, during which a specific region of interest is at risk of impact. It updates and tracks these windows in light of additional orbit observations.
  • ATS3 - high performance 3 degree of freedom atmospheric trajectory code. ATS3 projects ballistic trajectories through layered atmosphere models. It delivers a high degree of extensibility through its modular architecture and scripted configuration. ATS3 supports the use of a range of customisable planet, gravity and atmosphere models.
  • ATS6 - 6 degree of freedom atmospheric trajectory code. ATS6 projects ballistic trajectories through atmosphere models, generating vehicle attitude information in addition to vehicle position and velocity. Like ATS3, it delivers extensibility through its modular architecture and scripted configuration.
  • AHM - atmospheric re-entry aerothermal heating module. When linked with ATS3 or ATS6, AHM calculates the aerothermodynamic heating on a vehicle or fragment throughout its entry trajectory, and provides an assessment of the temperature history and ablation. ACG uses a novel application of the Heat Balance Integral (HBI) method by default, but alternatively a full 1D ablation model can be embedded.
  • CAM - conduction ablation model. CAM is a one dimensional heat conduction model which accounts for ablation due to pyrolysis and surface chemistry. CAM can be used as a standalone design tool for heatshield sizing, or can be embedded within AHM in re-entry studies.
  • ACG - 6 degree of freedom vehicle drag and heating coefficient evaluation code. ACG is implemented using either a ray traced, or simple panel, method to generate shaded or unshaded drag and heating coefficients. ACG supports the evaluation of complex vehicle geometries composed of geometric primitives linked by joints.
  • VFM - vehicle fragmentation assessment. When linked with ATS6, VFM evaluates the break up of complex geometries, based on aerodynamic and heat loading. In doing so it provides a posteriori evaluation of re-entry fragmentation.
  • DCS - space debris casualty simulation. DCS converts a series of fragment impact points into a probability track on the earth's surface; and assesses the associated probability of human casualties against third party population density maps.
  • ETD - elastic tether dynamics suite. Developed as part of an ESA GSP project, the ETD suite of tools model the dynamic behaviour of elastic tethers used in many active debris removal mission proposals.