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High Speed Imaging of the Fragmentation of the Jules Verne Automated Transfer Vehicle

[+] Author Affiliations
C. G. Giannopapa, J. Hatton

European Space Agency, Noordwijk, The Netherlands

E. Franken, B. van der Linden

Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, The Netherlands

P. Jenniskens

The SETI Institute, Mountain View, CA

Paper No. PVP2009-77818, pp. 599-604; 6 pages
  • ASME 2009 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 4: Fluid-Structure Interaction
  • Prague, Czech Republic, July 26–30, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4367-3 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3854-9
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


The Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) “Jules Verne” is the first completely automated rendezvous and docking spaceship to service to the International Space Station (ISS). As a cargo ship, it is designed for one-time use. After completing its mission, it is subjected to hypersonic flow during the re-entry into earth’s atmosphere, with high associated heat flux leading to structural heating and fragmentation of the vehicle. During its first voyage on September 29, 2008, the ATV reentry was observed using various instruments including a wide field view camera and high frame rate cameras. Using the wide field view camera the trajectory path can be reconstructed. The high frame rate camera gives information about the sequence of the events of the explosions and fragmentations of various parts of the spacecraft. The aim of this paper is to present the detailed events that occurred during the ATV re-entry.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME
Topics: Vehicles , Imaging



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