Research in Engineering and Aviation
Examining Atmospheric Conditions for the Potential Exploration of Gas Giant Vortices with Autonomous Gliders
Examining Atmospheric Conditions for the Potential Exploration of Gas Giant Vortices with Autonomous Gliders. 31st Congress of the Organisation Scientific et Technique Internationale du Vol a Voile (OSTIV), Uvalde, TX August 8-15.
The concept of an autonomous gliding flight with a buoyancy-driven glider has been explored in Morrow et al (1996) as a possible means of investigating the atmosphere of Titan. This has inspired a consideration of the possibility of using a similar approach to the exploration of the atmosphere of the giant planets. Vortices present a particularly inviting target for this type of mission. Simulations indicate that these vortices may have regions of upwelling that could significantly extend glider-based missions. Such simulations also generate the flowfield in these regions, allowing for improved aircraft and mission design.