In the high energy gas flows, associating high velocities and high temperatures, physical and chemical processes such as molecular vibrational excitation, dissociation, ionisation or various reactions take palce and deeply influence the structure of the flows. The characteristic times of these processes have the same order of magnitude as aerodynamic characteristic times so that these reactive media are generally in thermodynamic and chemical non-equilibrium. This book presents a general introductory study of these media. In the first part their fundamental statistical aspects are described, starting from their discrete structure and taking into account the interactions between elementary particles: the transport phenomena, relaxation and kinetics as well as their coupling are thus analysed and illustrated by many examples. The second part deals with the macroscopic re-entry bodies. Finally the experimental aspects of these flows, their simulations in shock tube and shock tunnel are described as well as their application, particularly in the aero- spatial domain.
This book is intended for researchers and students that have acquired basic knowledge in thermodynamics, statistical physics and fluid mechanics. It must also interest the engineers engaged in research and industry related to the applications of the reactive flows, in particular in the aerospace field and, more generally, all the researchers trying to simulate and calculate complex reactive flows.