Research objectives and content
The objective of this research project is the numerical study of weakly ionized high temperature gas flows. A strong emphasis is put on the use of up-to date finite volume numerical methods and of accurate physico chemical models needed to describe the complex phenomena that happen in such a flows. To improve the latter point an INTAS program on " Theoretical and experimental studies on high temperature ionized gas flows around thermal protection systems for space vehicles" is begun under the leadership of von Karman Institute. The aim is to develop and implement new models for the description of partially dissociated and ionized air in chemical, vibrational, electronic and electron non-equilibrium. The von Karman Institute is currently building a high temperature plasma air wind tunnel (so called Plasmatron) and this will be a unique opportunity to validate experimentally the numerical results and the quality of physico-chemical models. Another important field, susceptible of industrial relevance, that will be investigated is the one concerning the interaction between the high temperature air and the surface of ceramics materials employed in the thermal protection systems for aerospace vehicles. In this case oo it will be possible to validate experimentally the results.
Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)
It is expected that during this project the applicant will acquire up-to-date knowledge in physico-chemical modeling, CFD skills, ability to carry out research and to discuss critically and fruitfully the results obtained.