This experience included the unique ground testing of the actual flight hardware prior to flight in CUBRC’s flight matching LENS II ground test facility. This will provide one of a kind opportunities to evaluate how well the nation’s ground test facilities are able to determine the boundary layer state prior to flight. The CUBRC Aerosciences team continues to leverage this experience on other important flight test programs to advance the nation’s understanding of hypersonic flight.
CUBRC worked in conjunction with AFOSR, NASA Wallops (the launch provider) and co-PI Texas A&M to design, fabricate, instrument, ground test and deliver the completed flight vehicle to NASA Wallops, resulting in a very successful flight test. In this process, the CUBRC team gained significant expertise in the areas of flight test planning and computational analysis, analysis and selection of flight system materials and sensors, fabrication of flight test hardware to assure survival and mission success, and the hardware and wiring requirements for flight qualified instrumentation and telemetry of data.