High Enthalpy Shock Tunnel Göttingen (HEG)

The German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) DLR Institute of Aerodynamics and Flow Technology in Göttingen is the only facility in Europe that can correctly reproduce the absolute velocities of spacecraft re-entry flows. It can achieve flow velocities of up to seven kilometres per second.

Reproducing flow velocity correctly

By correctly reproducing the kinetic energy of the flow, as well as the high gas temperatures produced as a result (approximately 10,000 kelvin), this large-scale facility makes it possible to examine how chemical reactions in gas influence fluid mechanics upon re-entering the atmosphere of Earth, or entering the atmospheres of other planets.

The experimental data obtained in the HEG are used to validate DLR's numerical methods. In addition, they can be compared with flight data, allowing the quality of both experimental data from the facility and data from flight experiments to be assessed.


Volker Speelmann

Head of Research Infrastructures
German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Executive Board department for Innovation, Transfer and Research Infrastructure
Linder Höhe, 51147 Cologne

Dr. Alexander Wagner

German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Institute of Aerodynamics and Flow Technology
Bunsenstraße 10, 37073 Göttingen