I³MS - Kowalski Seminar
Dr. Julia Kowalski - Simulation of close-contact melting for exploration technologies
Graduate School AICES, RWTH Aachen University
Some of the icy bodies in our Solar System, e.g. Jovian moon Europa or Saturnian moon Enceladus are prime targets to search for extraterrestrial life. In view of next generation exploration missions, various innovative melting technologies for autonomous locomotion through ice have been proposed. This also requires advanced computational models to determine their dynamic range by solving for heat transfer in the probe and the ambient ice coupled to thermodynamic processes within the open boundary, micro-scale melting film. In this talk we will present a mathematical model for this so-called contact phase-change situation. In the absence of forces, the presented model degenerates to the commonly known Stefan problem, and we will discuss their relation in greater detail. As well we will describe a numerical solution scheme for relevant environmental conditions, present model results and draw conclusions in perspective of simulation support for ice-penetrating exploration missions and applications for contact phase-change models in general.