Digital Engineering and Digital Twin

Hypersonic systems, which are designed, built and supported by numerous people, generate digital data in many forms. By connecting the data that defines the shape, materials and processes used to create the hypersonic system, digital information is created to support predictive analysis and mission planning via a digital twin, a digital representation of the hypersonic system used to predict future performance.

Systems Integration and Design Trade Studies

HAMTC research focuses on model-based characterization of the design space that spans the vehicle/system level to the material selection, manufacturing processes, and joining concept level. We use an iterative workflow that proceeds from system-to-component and component-to-system to characterize the reliability and performance of various hypersonic concepts at the mission level.


Design for Hypersonic Intent

Hypersonic vehicle design requires consideration of the tightly coupled, multiphysics processes throughout the system to design internal flow paths and external vehicle shape. From the laboratory to the vehicle, HAMTC enables vertically integrated design, build, join and test capabilities across all scales to achieve mission requirements. 


Materials Development

HAMTC specializes in the design and development of new materials to meet the unique requirements required by hypersonic environments, including high temperature and environmental resistant alloys, UV-curable resins for digital light processing of non-reflective (dark) powders, and environmental and thermal barrier coatings.



Metal Printing

Laser-bed powder fusion of a series of structural and high temperature alloys provides high precision and the ability to print fine features. HAMTC offers a series of machines with various build envelopes relevant to hypersonic applications, including a collaboration with GE Additive which enables customization throughout the build process. 


Ceramic Printing

Digital light processing additive manufacturing of silicon carbide (SiC), silicon nitride (Si3N4), and ultra-high temperature ceramics (UHTCs) at relevant sizes for hypersonic vehicles provides high throughput, superior surface quality, and the ability to print fine features in a repeatable and reproducible manner. 


Dissimilar Materials Printing

Via unique advanced manufacturing equipment, HAMTC provides innovations in the ability to print dissimilar materials within the same build, thus providing functionally graded solutions to meet design needs. 


ICME Modeling to Support Rapid Material Qualification and Part Certification

Via integrated computational materials engineering (ICME) practices, HAMTC blends material modeling, advanced characterization, and data-driven approaches to rapidly qualify new materials and certify parts to reduce the time necessary to transition the new technology into service. 



Advanced Joining Techniques

HAMTC develops joining and bonding strategies necessary to integrate parts made of dissimilar materials together to form sub-assemblies and systems, including design trade studies while accounting for the disparate coefficient of thermal expansions of these materials.   


Novel Coatings

HAMTC develops high-temperature and oxidative-protection strategies for parts using a plasma spray of ceramics.


Part Count Reduction Through Additive Manufacturing

Using additive manufacturing, HAMTC explores additional design space and mechanical fasteners to reduce the number of overall parts, as well as developing novel joining techniques that exploit the additive manufacturing processes.



Thermo-Mechanical Testing

HAMTC offers a range of thermo-mechanical testing services, including: 

  • Flexure, compression, and shear-testing of ultra-high temperature ceramics and composites at high temperatures relevant to hypersonic vehicles in inert atmospheres using a custom designed system. The novel furnace hot zone architecture allows for the accommodation of large specimens while maintaining excellent temperature uniformity.
  • An induction system that provides rapid heating capabilities for tension and fatigue testing of metallic test specimens. This high-powered system allows for high throughput testing across a wide temperature range for a given material.
  • A one-of-a-kind plasma torch, capable of producing plasma temperatures that has been coupled with a load frame to conduct ultra-high temperature mechanical tests in air while specimens are exposed to the plasma jet.

Environmental Testing

The plasma torch facility uses high power microwave radiation to heat a gas to extreme conditions, mimicking high temperatures and oxidative atmosphere emerging in the vicinity of hypersonic vehicles. This unique environment is used to test novel materials capable of withstanding extreme conditions of hypersonic flight.

Controlled-atmosphere oxidation tests can be carried out at high temperatures using tailored gas mixtures pertinent to hypersonic flight environments. 


High-Speed Propulsion Testing

Ground-testing of hypersonic propulsion systems requires that the flow conditions of Mach 5+ flight at high altitude are accurately replicated in the laboratory. HAMTC is located within Purdue‘s Hypersonic and Applied Research Facility adjacent to the Purdue Zucrow Laboratories, which can produce these conditions at flow rates that enable testing of full-scale systems.  Laser-based diagnostics of flow conditions provide unprecedented insight to the rate-controlling, multi-scale, processes throughout the gas and solid materials in these experiments. 


Aerodynamic Testing

HAMTC provides the ability to rapidly prototype new designs with unique manufacturing processes to quickly assess hypersonic aerodynamic results given connectivity to the Boeing/AFOSR Mach 6 Quiet Tunnel and the Mach 8 Quiet Tunnel, all located within HARF.

Controlled-atmosphere oxidation tests can be carried out at high temperatures using tailored gas mixtures pertinent to hypersonic flight environments. 


Aerothermodynamic Testing

HYPULSE is a dual-mode reflected-shock/shock-expansion tunnel that can generate extremely high enthalpy flow conditions (up to Mach numbers of 20+) in a free-jet configuration. Flow conditions can be assessed with spatio-temporally resolved laser-based diagnostics at Megahertz rates. HAMTC is co-located along with HYPULSE in the Hypersonics and Applied Research Facility at Purdue University.

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