Using CFD to analyze thermal and optical influence on a zero pressure balloon at floating condition

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Luleå tekniska universitet/Rymdteknik; Luleå tekniska universitet/Rymdteknik

Författare: Yared Woldu; Anton Fritz; [2018]

Nyckelord: CFD; High-altitude balloon; ANSYS; FLUENT;

Sammanfattning: The ability to control the trajectory and understanding the atmospheric effects on the flight performance of a scientific high altitude balloon has long been an aspiring ambition. This thesis work analyses the thermal and optical environments at float using the simulation software, ANSYS FLUENT. The objectives for this thesis were to evaluate how the solar angle, sunshine factor and the ground emissivity altered the altitude for the balloon during floating condition in Steady-state simulations. A transient simulation was conducted to evaluate the diurnal cycle effects on the altitude of the balloon. The understanding of how the parameters influence the altitude will make it possible to autonomously route the balloon to desired altitudes where you have a favorable wind direction. Performing steady-state simulations showcased the significance of certain parameters. Different solar angles greatly influenced the temperature gradient on the balloon and hence a larger lifting force acted on the balloon when the sun was at its highest point. Varying the cloudiness mostly affected the maximum temperature distribution and did not affect the minimum temperature distribution. The steady-state simulations also indicated a limited but noticeable dependence on the ground emissivity. From the transient simulations it was further enhanced how great of influence the solar angle have, which was illustrated by running diurnal cycles. It was also apparent that there are great differences depending on the seasons. For future applications, it would be of interest to investigate the effects caused by wind velocities in the steady-state case. A comparative analytic solution should be performed in order to validate the simulation results.

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