Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Robert B. Greendyke, PhD.


The purpose of this research was to develop a highly accurate computational method for calculating the nonequilibrium radiative heat transfer within reentry shock layers. The nonequilibrium state of the flowfield was solved using the multispecies multitemperature nonequilibrium flow solver NH7AIR which is capable of separately tracking the vibrational energy of each diatomic species and the energy of the free electrons. The calculation of radiative heat transfer was performed by utilizing the detailed line-by-line spectral radiation solver SPRADIAN. Two radiative transport schemes were implemented in this coupled code. The first scheme was the standard tangent slab solution method. The second scheme was a finite volume method scheme for radiative heat transfer (FVMR). Data from the FIRE II flight experiment were used to validate the computer code. Coupled results obtained utilizing the tangent slab method exhibited a high degree of agreement with these experimental data. The utility of the FVMR scheme was also examined in an uncoupled implementation. Together, the enhancement of the nonequilibrium thermal modeling, the use of a highly accurate spectral radiation solver and the development of a conservative scheme for radiative transport constitute a significant improvement in current capabilities available for modeling the radiating shock layers which accompany reentry flight conditions.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number