What is it about?

The calculation of the sonic boom involves unconvenient empirical methods, or a theory dating back to the 50s that proves to be complex in use and ultimately questionable. We present here a simplified method to calculate the sonic boom features at various distances from the source (bullet, aircraft, space vehicle).

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Why is it important?

The study includes both innovative aspects and a considerable simplification of the practical applications (acoustic fallout from supersonic aircraft, targeting and scoring systems, etc). We show that the classic theory of the sonic boom has limits and appears unnecessarily complicated with regard to the reliability of its results

Perspectives

I hope that the content of this article, based on a study conducted at ONERA and a personal work, may be the subject of other applications. The quick calculation method could be well suited, for example, to projectile tracking in real time.

Jean Varnier
ONERA

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This page is a summary of: Ballistic Wave from Projectiles and Vehicles of Simple Geometry, AIAA Journal, July 2018, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), DOI: 10.2514/1.j056239.
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