Experimental results Regarding the inflation of unfolding cylindrical tubes

A. L. Clem, S. W. Smith, J. A. Main

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Inflatable structures promise to greatly reduce the cost oflaunching pay loads into orbit However, predicting the dynamics of their deployment and their interactions with other spacecraft is difficult. One such method for understanding the dynamics is the development of a computer simulation. One of the most important elements of a computer simulation is the determination of the internal pressure characteristics during inflation and deployment. Presented in this paper are the results of several experiments designed to examine the internal pressure of an unfolding, inflatable cylinder. Results show that external pressure greatly effects internal pressure during pressurization. Results also show that delays in pressurization across folds can occur. The presence and size of the delay are a function of tube diameter, pressure, and fold angle.

Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - 2001
Event19th AIAA Applied Aerodynamics Conference 2001 - Anaheim, CA, United States
Duration: Jun 11 2001Jun 14 2001


Conference19th AIAA Applied Aerodynamics Conference 2001
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityAnaheim, CA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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