Surprisingly, the heat shield of a hypersonic space vehicle entering a planetary atmosphere and a burning match undergo comparable internal physical phenomena. The ignition of a match is triggered by the combustion of its head. The heat generated by the sulfur head starts a self-sustained process, called pyrolysis. Pyrolysis comes from the ancient Greek “pyros” (fire) and “lysis” (separation). This substantive arose from early observations that in fires wood is separated into a solid dark part (char) and combustible gases. The exothermal combustion of the pyrolysis gas in air produces more heat than necessary to keep the pyrolysis process going. When a match is held horizontally, sufficient heat is transferred into the wooden stick to sustain the pyrolysis process and a pyrolysis front propagates along the stick. Technically, one could argue that a match does not burn but that it undergoes self-pyrolysis. The pyrolysis residue is a black stick of carbonized wood (char), a quasi-pure pseudo-graphitic carbon. It is interesting to observe that a match usually bends while burning, revealing internal mechanical strains generated by thermal dilatation and pyrolysis shrinkage. The char quickly cools down and its oxidation by air is very limited. A very similar pyrolysis process occurs in the thermal protection system (TPS) of very high-speed atmospheric entry capsules, with the difference that the surface temperature is chiefly imposed by a high enthalpy flow and that the surface temperature may reach 3000°C. The same process is used to produce biofuel by heating biomass up to 1000°C in the absence of oxygen. Combustion of the char occurs in fire and TPS applications. In the TPS community, the solid combustion process is called ablation, to capture the idea that matter is removed – such as charcoal progressively being consumed in a barbecue. Spallation (mechanical erosion), melting and sublimation (solid to gas transformation) may also contribute to ablation in TPS applications, depending on the type of material and entry conditions. Engineers have to design heat shields thick enough to anticipate these ablation processes. The articles that are available in this website bring some contibutions to improve the understanding and the modeling of these phenomena.

Journal articles

28. Computation of the Permeability Tensor of Non-Periodic Anisotropic Porous Media from 3D Images. H. Scandelli, A. Ahmadi-Senichault, C. Levet, J. Lachaud. Transport in Porous Media, 142: 669–697, 2022.
doi: 10.1007/s11242-022-01766-8

27. Estimation of Local Equilibrium Foam Model Parameters as Functions of the Foam Quality and the Total Superficial Velocity. A. Vicard, O. Atteia, H. Bertin, J. Lachaud. ACS Omega. 7:16866-16876, 2022.
doi: 10.1021/acsomega.1c04899 Open access

26. Simulation of wood combustion in PATO using a detailed pyrolysis model coupled to fireFoam. H. Scandelli, A. Ahmadi-Senichault, F.  Richard, J.  Lachaud. Applied Sciences, 11: 10570, 2021.
doi: 10.3390/app112210570 Open access

25. High-flux sublimation of a 3D carbon/carbon composite: surface roughness patterns. C. Levet, J. Lachaud, V. Ducamp, R. Memes, J. Couzi, J. Mathiaud, A. P. Gillard, P. Weisbecker, G. L. Vignoles.  Carbon. 173: 817-831, 2021.
doi: 10.1016/j.carbon.2020.11.023 Preprint

24. Multicomponent pyrolysis model for thermogravimetric analysis of phenolic ablator and lignocellulosic biomass. F. Torres-Herrador, V. Leroy, B. Helber, L. Contat-Rodrigo, J. Lachaud, T. Magin. AIAA Journal. AIAA Journal, 58 : 4081-4089, 2020.
doi: 10.2514/1.J059423 Preprint

23. A high heating rate pyrolysis model for the Phenolic Impregnated Carbon Ablator (PICA) based on mass spectroscopy experiments. F. Torres-Herrador, J.B.E. Meurisse, F. Panerai, J. Blondeau, J.  Lachaud, B. K. Bessire, T. E. Magin, N. N. Mansour. Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. 141 : 1-10, 2019.
doi: 10.1016/j.jaap.2019.05.014 Preprint

22. Ablative thermal protection system under uncertainty including pyrolysis gas composition. M. Rivier, J. Lachaud, P. M. Congedo. Aerospace Science and Technology. 84 : 1059-1069, 2019.
doi: 10.1016/j.ast.2018.11.048  Preprint

21. Multidimensional material response simulations of a full-scale tiled ablative heatshield. J. B. E. Meurisse, J. Lachaud, F. Panerai, C. Tang, N. N. Mansour. Aerospace Science and Technology. 76 : 497–511, 2018.
doi: 10.1016/j.ast.2018.01.013  Preprint

20. Analytical modeling of the transient ablation of a 3D C/C composite. J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, G. L. Vignoles. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 155 A : 1150-1165, 2017.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2017.06.130  Preprint

19. Theoretical study on the micro-scale oxidation of resin-infused carbon ablators. J. Ferguson, F. Panerai, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. Carbon. 121 : 552-562, 2017.
doi: 10.1016/j.carbon.2017.06.013  Preprint

18. Thermodynamic properties of carbon-phenolic gas mixtures. J. B. Scoggins, J. Rabinovich, B. Barros-Fernandez, A. Martin, J. Lachaud, R. L. Jaffe, N. N. Mansour, G. Blanquart, T. E. Magin. Aerospace Science and Technology.  66 : 177-192, 2017.
doi: 10.1016/j.ast.2017.02.025  Preprint

17. A generic local thermal equilibrium model for porous reactive materials submitted to high temperatures. J. Lachaud, J. B. Scoggins, T. E. Magin, M. G. Meyer, N. N. Mansour. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 108 : 1406-1417, 2017.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2016.11.067  Preprint

16. Micro-tomography based analysis of thermal conductivity, diffusivity and oxidation behavior of rigid and flexible fibrous insulators. F. Panerai, J. C. Ferguson, J. Lachaud, A. Martin, M. J. Gasch, N. N. Mansour. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 108 : 801-811, 2017.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2016.12.048  Preprint

15. Detailed analysis of species production from the pyrolysis of Phenolic Impregnated Carbon Ablator.
H.-W Wong, J. Peck, J. Assif, F. Panerai, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. Journal of Analytical and Applied Pyrolysis. 122: 258-267, 2016.
doi: 10.1016/j.jaap.2016.09.016  Preprint

14. Effects of water phase change on the material response of low-density carbon-phenolic ablators. A. Omidy, F. Panerai, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour, A. Martin. Journal of Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Technical Notes. 30 (2): 473-478, 2016.
doi: 10.2514/1.T4814  Preprint

13. Modeling the oxidation of low-density carbon fiber materials based on micro-tomography.
J. C. Ferguson, F. Panerai,  J. Lachaud, A. Martin,  S. C. Bailey and N. N. Mansour. Carbon, 96, 57-65, 2016. doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2015.08.113  Preprint

12. Detailed chemical equilibrium model for porous ablative materials. J. Lachaud, T. van Eekelen, J. B. Scoggins, T. E. Magin, N. N. Mansour. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 90, 1034-1045, 2015.
doi:10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2015.05.106  Preprint

11. Quantitative determination of species production from the pyrolysis of a phenol-formaldehyde resin.
H.-W Wong, J. Peck, R. Bonomi, J. Assif, G. Reinisch, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. Polymer Degradation and Stability, 112, 122-131, 2015.
doi:10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2014.12.020  Preprint
       
10. Porous material analysis toolbox based on OpenFoam and applications. J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour.  Journal of Thermophysics and Heat Transfer, 28 (2): 191–202, 2014.
doi: 10.2514/1.T4262  Preprint

9. Flow-tube oxidation experiments on the carbon preform of PICA. F . Panerai, A. Martin, N. N. Mansour, S. A. Sepka, J. Lachaud. Journal of Thermophysics and Heat Transfer, 40 (2): 181-190, 2014.
doi: 10.2514/1.T4265 Preprint

8. Numerical validation of an effective radiation heat transfer model for fiber preforms. A. J. van Eekelen, J. Lachaud. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Engineering Notes. 48 (3): 534-537, 2011.
doi: 10.2514/1.51865 Preprint

7. Benefits of X-ray CMT for the modeling of C/C composites. O. Coindreau, C. Mulat, C. Germain, J. Lachaud, G. L. Vignoles. Advanced Engineering materials, 13 (3): 168-185, 2011.
doi: 10.1002/adem.201000233  Preprint

6. Multiscale approach to ablation modeling of phenolic impregnated carbon ablators. J. Lachaud, I. Cozmuta, N. N. Mansour. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, 47 (6): 910-921, 2010.
doi: 10.2514/1.42681   Preprint

5. Ablation of carbon-based materials: multiscale roughness modelling. Gerard L. Vignoles, Jean Lachaud, Yvan Aspa, Jean-Marc Goyhénèche. Composites Science and Technology, 69 (9): 1470-1477, 2009.   doi:10.1016/j.compscitech.2008.09.019  Preprint

4. A Brownian motion technique to simulate gasification and its application to C/C composite ablation. J. Lachaud, G.L. Vignoles. Computational Materials Science, 44 (4): 1034-1041, 2009. doi:10.1016/j.commatsci.2008.07.015  Preprint Movie

3. Analytical modeling of the steady state ablation of a 3D C/C composite. J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, G. L. Vignoles. Int. J. of Heat and Mass transfer, 51 (9-10): 2618-2627, 2008.
doi:10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2008.01.008  Preprint

3-corrigendum. Corrigendum to “Analytical modeling of the steady state ablation of a 3D C/C composite”, [Int. J. Heat Mass Transfer 51 (2008) 2614–2627.]. Z. Han, G. L. Vignoles, J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 164 : 119957, 2021.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2020.119957 Open Access

2. A theoretical/experimental approach to the intrinsic oxidation reactivities of C/C composites and of their components. J. Lachaud, N. Bertrand, G. L. Vignoles, G. Bourget, F. Rebillat, and P. Weisbecker.Carbon, 45 (14): 2768-2776, 2007.
doi:10.1016/j.carbon.2007.09.034  Preprint

1. The Film-boiling densification process for C/C composite fabrication : from local scale to optimization. G. Vignoles, J.M. Goyhénèche, P. Sebastian, J. R. Puiggali, J.F. Lines, J. Lachaud, P. Delhaes, M. Trinquecostes. Chemical Engineering Science, 61 (17): 5636-5653, 2006.
doi:10.1016/j.ces.2006.04.025

Conference proceedings

34. Experimental investigation of heat transfer in Calcarb : one or two temperature model? S. Liu, A. Ahmadi-Senichault, C. Levet, J. Lachaud. 2nd International conference on flight vehicles, aerothermodynamics and re-entry missions and engineering, FAR2022, 19-22 June, 2022. Heilbronn, Germany.
Preprint

33. Effect of the internal gas flow velocity on the thermal conductivity of porous thermal protection systems. J. Chevalier, B. Dubroca, A. Cosculluela, A. Ahmadi-Senichault, J. Lachaud. 2nd International conference on flight vehicles, aerothermodynamics and re-entry missions and engineering, FAR2022, 19-22 June, 2022. Heilbronn, Germany.
Preprint

32. Two temperature ablative material response model with application to low-density carbon phenolic ablators. H. Scandelli, A. Ahamdi-Senichault, J. Lachaud. 2nd International conference on flight vehicles, aerothermodynamics and re-entry missions and engineering, FAR2022, 19-22 June, 2022. Heilbronn, Germany.
Preprint

31. Multi-scale modeling of low-density carbon-phenolic ablators. N. N. Mansour, J. Lachaud, F. Panerai, J. BE. Meurisse, J. C. Ferguson, A. Borner, J. Monk, C. Tang, T. Magin, M. J. Wright, M. Barnhardt. International conference on flight vehicles, aerothermodynamics and re-entry missions and engineering, FAR2019, 30 sept – 3 oct., 2019, Monopoli, Italy.
Preprint

30. Comparison between traditional and competitive reaction models for the pyrolysis of high temperature aerospace materials. F. Torres-Herrador, J. Coheur, J. Blondeau, J.B.E. Meurisse, F. Panerai, J.  Lachaud, T. E. Magin, N. N. Mansour. AIAA Aviation 2019 Forum. AIAA paper 2019-3361.
doi: 10.2514/6.2019-33 Preprint

29. Analysis of Fibrous Felts for Flexible Ablators Using Synchrotron Hard X-Ray Micro-Tomography. F. Panerai, J. Ferguson,  J. Lachaud, A. Martin,  M. J. Gasch, N. N. Mansour. 8th European Symposium on Aerothermodynamics for Space Vehicles.  Lisbon, Portugal, March 2-4, 2015.
Preprint

28. Quantitative determination of species production from the pyrolysis of the Phenolic Impregnated Carbon Ablator (PICA).
H.-W. Wong, J. Peck, J. Assif, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. 53rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, January 2015. AIAA paper 2015-1447.
doi: 10.2514/6.2015-1447

27. Toward Ablative Material Response Coupling in DPLR. S. Muppidi, M. Barnhardt, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. 11th AIAA/ASME Joint Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Conference, June 2014. AIAA paper 2014-2120.
doi: 10.2514/6.2014-2120

26. Numerical and experimental study of carbon fiber oxidation. F. Panerai, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour, A. Martin. 52nd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, National Harbor, MD, 13-17 January 2014. AIAA Paper 2014-1208.
doi: 10.2514/6.2014-1208

25. Measurement of pyrolysis products from phenolic polymer thermal decomposition. H.-W. Wong, J. Peck, R. Edwards, G. Reinisch, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour. 52nd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, National Harbor, MD, 13-17 January 2014. AIAA paper 2014-1388.
doi: 10.2514/6.2014-1388

24. Porous-material Analysis Toolbox based on OpenFOAM-extend and Applications. J. Lachaud, N. Mansour. 44th AIAA Thermophysics Conference, San Diego, CA, Jun 24-28 2013.  AIAA paper 2013-2767.
doi: 10.2514/6.2013-2767

23. A New Approach To Light-Weight Ablators Analysis: From Micro-Tomography Measurements to Statical Analysis and Modeling. N.N. Mansour, F. Panerai, A. Martin, D.Y. Parkinson, A. MacDowell, A. Haboub, T. A. Sandstrom, T. Fast, G. L. Vignoles, J. Lachaud.  44th AIAA Thermophysics Conference, San Diego, CA, Jun 24-28 2013. AIAA Paper 2013-2768.
doi: 10.2514/6.2013-2768

22. Flow-tube Oxidation Experiments on the Carbon Preform of PICA. F. Panerai, A. Martin, N. N. Mansour, S. A. Sepka, J. Lachaud. 44th AIAA Thermophysics Conference, San Diego, CA, Jun 24-28 2013. AIAA Paper 2013-2769.
doi: 10.2514/6.2013-2769

21. Validation of a volume-averaged fiber-scale model for the oxidation of a carbon-fiber preform. J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour, A. Ceballos, D. Pejakovic, L. Zhang, J. Marschall. 42nd AIAA Thermophysics Conference, 27 – 30 Jun 2011, Honolulu, Hawaii.  AIAA Paper 2011-3640.
doi: 10.2514/6.2011-3640  Preprint

20. Stagnation line approximation for ablation thermochemistry. J. de Muelenaere, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour, T. E. Magin. 42nd AIAA Thermophysics Conference, 27 – 30 Jun 2011, Honolulu, Hawaii. AIAA Paper 2011-3616.
doi: 10.2514/6.2011-3616 Preprint

19. High-Fidelity Charring Ablator Thermal Response Model. N. N. Mansour, J. Lachaud, T. E. Magin, J. de Muelenaere, Y.-K. Chen. 42nd AIAA Thermophysics Conference, 27 – 30 Jun 2011, Honolulu, Hawaii. AIAA Paper 2011-3124.
doi: 10.2514/6.2011-3124  Preprint

18. A short review of ablative material response models and simulation tools. J. Lachaud, T.E. Magin, I. Cozmuta, N.N. Mansour. 7th Aerothermodynamics Symposium, 9-12 May 2011, Brugge, Belgium. Edited by L Ouwehand, ESA Publications Division, ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands. ESA SP-692.
ISBN : 978-92-9221-256-8 Preprint

17. Radiation Heat-Transfer Model for the Ablation Zone of Low-Density Carbon-Resin Composites. T. van Eekelen, J. Lachaud. 10th AIAA/ASME Joint Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Conference, Jun 28-1 Jul 2010, Chicago, Illinois. AIAA paper 2010-4904.
doi: 10.2514/6.2010-4904  Preprint

16. Ablation of C/C composites: roughness and reactivity. G. L. Vignoles, J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, M. Quintard. Carbon 2010, Clemson, SC, USA, 7-11 July 2010.

15. Effective surface recession laws for the physico-chemical ablation of C/C composite materials. G. L. Vignoles, J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, M. Quintard.  In “Mechanical Properties and Performance of Engineering Ceramics and Composites V”, Dileep Singh and Jonathan Salem, Editors; Sanjay Mathur and Tatsuki Ohji, Volume Editors, Ceram. Eng. And Sci. Procs vol. 31, n° 2, The American Ceramic Society, Westerville, OH (2010), pp. 351-360.

14. Microscopic scale simulation of the ablation of fibrous materials. J. Lachaud, N. Mansour. 48th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, Orlando, Florida, Jan. 4-7, 2010. AIAA Paper 2010-0984.
doi: 10.2514/6.2010-984  Preprint

13. Modélisation de la pyrolyse d’un matériau composite à fibres courtes orientées aléatoirement. J. Lachaud, Nagi Mansour, Susan White, Bernie Laub, Jean-Marc Bouilly. Congrès Français de Thermique, SFT 2008, Toulouse, France, June 2008. Postprint (in French)  Preprint (in English)

12. Résolution analytique et validation expérimentale d’un modele multiéchelle d’ablation pour les composites C/C. J. Lachaud, G. Vignoles, J.-M. Goyhénèche, J.-F. Epherre. Congrès Français de Thermique, SFT 2007, Ile des Embiez, France, May 2007 (in French). Preprint (in French)

11. 3D Modelling of thermochemical ablation in carbon-based materials : effect of anisotropy on surface roughness onset.
J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, G. L. Vignoles, J.-M. Goyhénèche. Proceedings of the 10th International Symposium on Materials in a Space Environment, Collioure, France. ESA-SP 616,  Septembre 2006, Edited by L. Conroy, ESA Publications Division, ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands. Preprint

10. Experimental characterization and 3D modeling of carbon/carbon composites oxidation: role of the interphase.
J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, G. Vignoles, G. Bourget. In J. Lamon, editor, 12th European Conference on Composite Materials (ECCM12), Biarritz. 29th August – 1st September 2006. Preprint

9. Identifcation of intrinsic carbon fiber oxidation kinetics from experimental data and CFD modeling. N. Bertrand, J. Lachaud, G. Bourget, G. L. Vignoles, F. Rebillat. In J. Lamon, editor, 12th European Conference on Composite Materials (ECCM12), Biarritz. 29th August – 1st September 2006. Preprint

8. Simulation of C/C composites ablation using a VOF method with moving reactive interface. Y. Aspa, J. Lachaud, G. Vignoles, M. Quintard. In J. Lamon, editor, 12th European Conference on Composite Materials (ECCM12), Biarritz. 29th August – 1st September 2006. Preprint

7. Ablation of carbon-based materials : multiscale roughness modeling. G. Vignoles, J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, J.-M. Goyhénèche.  In J. Lamon, editor, 12th European Conference on Composite Materials (ECCM12), Biarritz. 29th August – 1st September 2006. Postprint

6. Effective Surface Approach for the Design of Ablative Composites.
Y. Aspa, J. Lachaud, G. Vignoles, M. Quintard. Proceedings of the 1st International ARA Days : Atmospheric Reentry Systems Missions and Vehicles, Edited by T. Leuveugle. Arcachon, France, July 2006.

5. Ablation of carbon/carbon composites : 3D multiscale simulation of surface roughness evolution. J. Lachaud, G. Vignoles, Y. Aspa, J.-F. Epherre. Proceedings of the 1st International ARA Days : Atmospheric Reentry Systems Missions and Vehicles, Edited by T. Leuveugle. Arcachon, France, July 2006. Preprint

4. Identification of microscale ablative properties of C/C composites using inverse simulation. Y. Aspa, J. Lachaud, G. Vignoles, M. Quintard. 9th AIAA/ASME Joint Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Conference. 5 – 8 June 2006, San Francisco, California. AIAA Paper 2006-2911.
doi: 10.2514/6.2006-2911 Preprint

3. Roughness evolution in ablation of carbon-based materials : multi-scale modelling and material analysis. G. Vignoles, J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa. Proceedings of the 5th European Workshop on Thermal Protection Systems and Hot Structure. ESA SP 631, May 2006. Edited by K. Fletcher, ESA Publications Division, ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands. ESA SP 631. Preprint

2. Modélisation 3D de l’ablation thermochimique des composites C/C. J. Lachaud, Y. Aspa, G. Vignoles, J.-M. Goyhénèche. Congrés Français de Thermique, SFT 2006, Ile de Ré, France, May 2006 (in French). Preprint (in French)

1. Ablation in carbon/carbon composites : microscopic observations and 3D numerical simulation of surface roughness evolution. J. Lachaud, G. L. Vignoles, J.M. Goyhénèche, J.-F. Epherre. 6th Pacific Rim Conference on Ceramic and Glass Technology (PacRim 6), September  2005, Maui, Hawaii. Published in, Ceramic Transactions, 191: 149-160, 2006. Ceramic Transactions, 191 : 149-160, 2006 (edited version). Preprint

Ablation Test-cases

Ablation Test-Case Series# 3. Version 2.0. T. van Eekelen, J. Lachaud, A. Martin,  D. Bianchi. Prepared for the 6th Ablation Workshop, April 10-11 2014, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Ablation Test-Case Series# 2. Version 2.8. J. Lachaud, A. Martin, T. van Eekelen, I. Cozmuta. Prepared for the 5th Ablation Workshop, Feb. 28-March, 2012, Lexington, Kentucky.

Ablation Test-Case Series# 1
. Version 1.1. J. Lachaud, A. Martin, I. Cozmuta, B. Laub. Prepared for the 4th AF-SNL-NASA Ablation Workshop, March 1-3, 2011, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Properties of the Theoretical Ablative Composite for Open Testing (TACOT). J. Lachaud, T. van Eekelen, A. Martin, D. Bianchi, I. Cozmuta, B. Laub, J. de Muelenaere, J. B. Scoggins, J.-M. Bouilly, J.-M. Dupillier, B. Blackwell, M. Howard.  TACOT_v3.0.xls

Code-to-Code Comparison, and Material Response Modeling of Stardust and MSL Using PATO and FIAT. A. D. Omidy,  F. Panerai, J. Lachaud, N. N. Mansour, I. Cozmuta, A. Martin. NASA CR-2015-218960, 2015, 36 pages. NASA Technical Report Server  Open access

Contact

Jean Lachaud
Associate Professor
University of Bordeaux
Institute of Mechanical Engineering / Building A11
33400 Talence, FRANCE

email : jean.lachaud@u-bordeaux.fr

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