Fundamental processes in reentry plasmas

In a research lead by Dr. Mário Lino da Silva, the fundamental processes occurring in planetary atmosphere spaceship reentry conditions, are studied. These are extreme conditions, where very high translation temperatures can be reached, above 10 000K. The investigation focus on the dissociation and recombination mechanisms, as well as the vibrational energy transfers involving vibrationally excited molecules. Complete sets of V-V (vibration-vibration) and V-T (vibration-translation) reaction rates are obtained for nitrogen and oxygen from the Forced Harmonic Oscillator (FHO) model.