REComm- ReEntry and Hypersonic Vehicle Plasma Communications System
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
We propose to address the problem of communications blackout caused by the plasma layer around a hypersonic vehicle through the application of electric and magnetic fields to control the properties of this plasma layer. An embedded magnet integrated beneath a communications or GPS antenna along with electrodes on each side of the antenna will create electric and magnetic fields that accelerate the plasma past the antenna, reducing the plasma density over the antenna, therefore allowing communication. We call this the ReComm system. Key advantages of this approach over other possible solutions is that it is a lightweight adjustable system with minimal impact on the vehicle's aerodynamic characteristics. During phase-I, particle and CFD simulation codes were developed to calculate the density and position of the plasma around a hypersonic vehicle at high and low altitudes, and the ReComm technique was demonstrated analytically and in simulations. The goals of phase-II are to demonstrate the ReComm effect experimentally and to extend the plasma and ReComm effect simulations to cover lower altitude scenarios than covered in Phase-I. An additional goal in phase-II is to create a flight system design providing cost estimates for inclusion of ReComm in a demonstration mission.
Small Business Information at Submission:
ELECTRODYNAMIC APPLICATIONS, INC.
P.O. Box 131460 Ann Arbor, MI 48113
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