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Low-velocity impacts into granular material: application to small-body landing

Murdoch, Naomi and Drilleau, Mélanie and Sunday, Cecily and Thuillet, Florian and Wilhelm, Arnaud and Nguyen, Gautier and Gourinat, Yves Low-velocity impacts into granular material: application to small-body landing. (2021) Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 503 (3). 3460-3471. ISSN 0035-8711

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stab624

Abstract

With the flourishing number of small body missions that involve surface interactions, understanding the mechanics of spacecraft - surface interactions is crucial for improving our knowledge about the landing phases of space missions, for preparing spacecraft operations, and for interpreting the results of measurements made during the surface interactions. Given their regolith-covered surfaces, the process of landing on a small body can be considered as an impact at low-velocity onto a granular material in reduced-gravity. In order to study the influence of the surface material, projectile shape, and gravity on the collision dynamics we used two experimental configurations (one for terrestrial gravity experiments and one for reduced-gravity experiments) to perform low-velocity collisions into different types of granular materials: quartz sand, and two different sizes of glass beads (1.5 and 5 mm diameter). Both a spherical and a cubic projectile (with varying impact orientation) were used. The experimental data support a drag model for the impact dynamics composed of both a hydrodynamic drag force and quasi-static resistance force. The hydrodynamic and quasi-static contributions are related to the material frictional properties, the projectile geometry, and the gravity. The transition from a quasi-static to a hydrodynamical regime is shown to occur at lower impact velocities in reduced-gravity trials than in terrestrial gravity trials, indicating that regolith has a more fluid-like behaviour in low-gravity. The reduced quasi-static regime of a granular material under low-gravity conditions leads to a reduction in the strength, resulting in a decreased resistance to penetration and larger penetration depths.

Item Type:Article
HAL Id:hal-03179064
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Ecole nationale supérieure des Mines d'Albi-Carmaux - IMT Mines Albi (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Toulouse - INSA (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut Supérieur de l'Aéronautique et de l'Espace - ISAE-SUPAERO (FRANCE)
Other partners > Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier - UT3 (FRANCE)
Other partners > Université Côte d'Azur (FRANCE)
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Deposited On:24 Mar 2021 09:23

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