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UND, Purdue University collaborate on research to improve safety and tracking of hypersonic vehicles

Hallie Chelmo, assistant professor of Mechanical Engineering, seated, and David Delene, research professor of Atmospheric Sciences, left, work in Chelmo’s lab while doctoral student Imteaz Osmani assists. Photo by Adam Kurtz/UND Today.

What are the implications of the interaction between hypersonic vehicles travelling through the atmosphere and the ice crystals that naturally form there? A pair of UND researchers have received a federal grant to study that interaction, and their results could impact the design and improve the safety of hypersonic vehicles.

Hallie Chelmo, assistant professor of Mechanical Engineering, and David Delene, research professor of Atmospheric Sciences, have been awarded $750,000 from the Office of Naval Research to study how ice crystals form in the atmosphere and how they impact hypersonic vehicles. Such vehicles include certain missiles, military vehicles, and spacecraft reentering earth’s atmosphere.

The UND researchers are joined in the project by Joseph Jewell, an assistant professor in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University. Chelmo is the Principal Investigator on the project, and Delene and Jewell are working as Co-Principal Investigators.

Brian Tande, dean of the UND College of Engineering and Mines, praised Chelmo’s leadership of the collaborative research project, which is happening alongside national security and space research at UND.

“Dr. Chelmo’s unique expertise and capabilities are already making significant contributions to the research mission of our College and to UND’s National Security Initiative,” Tande said. “This project is a very important part of our growing portfolio of work studying hypersonics, an area critical to our national security. Dr. Chelmo has assembled a very strong team of collaborators and I’m certain that this project will be the first of many.”

For the full story, find it at UND Today.