SOCRATES – Exhaust Plume Simulation

In collaboration with the Air Force Research Lab and other DoD agencies, SSI developed the SOCRATES (Spacecraft/Orbiter Contamination Representation Accounting for Transiently Emitted Species) software to predict the contamination and radiation environment around spacecraft.

SOCRATES accurately models the interaction of a spacecraft’s thruster exhaust with the atmosphere: calculating densities, reaction rates, and radiative emission rates for both steady-state and unsteady flows.

The SOCRATES software leverages the Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method with a primary focus for high altitude plume flow field and radiation calculations. It is designed as a research tool for specialists (able to simulate arbitrary species, arbitrary chemical reactions, trace species, etc.), and as a user-friendly tool for the non-specialist (able to run and produce useful results with very minimal input). Distribution of the software is restricted by U.S. export control regulations.

DSMC prediction of an underexpanded Argon plume

Spectral Science, Inc