The objective of the BOLT (Boundary Layer Transition) project is to experimentally investigate the hypersonic boundary layer transition mechanisms from laminar to turbulent flow on a low-curvature concave surface with highly swept leading edges. This shall be achieved during a captive-carry flight experiment on a sounding rocket at speeds between Mach 5 to 7 in two experiment windows on upleg and downleg trajectory of the rocket. The vehicle configuration is therefore selected and adapted in a way to provide the necessary measurement conditions, especially also on the ascent flight path.
The BOLT project is coordinated by Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) led by Dr. Sarah Popkin.
The project will be carried out in collaboration with the Air Force Research Laboratory Aerospace Systems Directorate (AFRL/RQ) and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL). The extended BOLT team also includes additional partners from government, academia, and industry including Purdue University, the University of Minnesota, Texas A&M University, the NASA Langley Research Center, CUBRC, VirtusAero LLC, and GoHypersonic, Inc
The German Aerospace Center (DLR) is collaborating closely on ground testing, aerodynamic post flight analyses as well as mission design, vehicle layout and payload subsystems.
The Mobile Rocket Base (MORABA) of Space Operations and Astronaut Training (RB) provides the payload support systems and launch service of the sounding rocket.
For better evaluation of the experimental data consisting of over 340 measurements of temperature, pressure, and heat transfer on the BOLT Flight Geometry, detailed knowledge of the atmospheric conditions within the two experiment windows is essential. Therefore, special weather balloon soundings with the HYFLITS (Hypersonic Flight in the Turbulent Stratosphere) payloads from the HYFLITS team of collaborating US universities (University of Minnesota, University of Colorado, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University) shall be coordinated with the BOLT mission in a way to perform timely and locally as close as possible soundings to the experiment vehicle.
The objective of the BOLT (Boundary Layer Transition) project is to experimentally investigate the hypersonic boundary layer transition mechanisms from laminar to turbulent flow on a low-curvature concave surface with highly swept leading edges.