Integral Part of da Vinci Project Quest to Win the International
X PRIZE® Competition - CFDRC
Software Support Allows Virtual Testing for Manned Space Vehicle - Huntsville
, AL , (February 25, 2003) - CFD Research Corporation
(CFDRC) announced today that its multiphysics software products,
CFD-ACE+ and CFD-FASTRAN, have been selected as design tools
for the da Vinci manned space vehicle project. The da Vinci Project
is a Canadian entrant in the X PRIZE® competition, the International "New
Race to Space®".
To win the X PRIZE, private teams must finance, build and fly
a three-person spacecraft 100 km (62 miles) to the edge of space,
return safely, and then demonstrate the reusability of their vehicle
by flying it again within two-weeks. There are now 24 teams from
seven countries entered into the competition. The goal of the X
PRIZE is to make space travel frequent and affordable for the general
"CFDRC and CFD Canada have provided valuable and strong CFD
support for the da Vinci project," said Brian Feeney, Team
Leader and Pilot. "The CFD-ACE+ and FASTRAN software tools
have combined well with several other analytical methods and CAD
tools better equipping us to build our spacecraft from design to
final-stage testing and performance validation. The ability to
perform extensive external and coupled thermal load analysis on
the reentry phase of the flight is particularly beneficial. The
analytical tools and resources provided from both CFDRC and CFD
Canada allow us a major competitive advantage moving forward."
"We are very excited to be a part of the da Vinci project,
where the ultimate goal is routine space travel," said Dr.
Ashok Singhal, President and Technical Director, CFD Research Corporation. "CFDRC
has always been at the leading edge of simulation technology, making
our tools very suitable for the da Vinci project in its quest to
fly humans into space."
"We have been intimately involved in this exciting project
since its inception," said Dr. Vladimir Kudriavtsev, managing
director of CFD Canada. "Multi-disciplinary CFD solutions
developed at CFDRC were utilized to study various flight scenarios
and various vehicle configurations, including innovative aero-breaking
The da Vinci Project began development of its vehicle shortly
after the X PRIZE was announced in 1996, and the team officially
entered the competition in 2000. To date, there have been two unmanned
flight tests of the full-scale rocket propulsion system and flight
qualification of the flight guidance system. Detailed engineering
and fabrication of the manned rocket is ongoing. Flight-testing
of the manned rocket is targeted for 2003.
"It will be the private sector, led by visionaries such as
Brian Feeney and his da Vinci team, that will open the frontiers
of space for the general public," said Dr. Peter Diamandis,
Founder and Chairman. "We congratulate CFDRC for supporting
that vision and the da Vinci Project."
About CFD Research Corporation:
CFDRC is a technology leader in advanced multiphysics and multidisciplinary
simulation software and research. The company's CFD-ACE+ product
line and related services allow users to significantly reduce design
time and expenses through comprehensive up-front simulations. The
main industries served are semiconductors, MEMS, BioMEMS, medical
devices, fuel cells, automotive, and aerospace. CFDRC also offers
CFD-FASTRAN, the leading compressible flows software for high-speed
aerodynamics and multiple moving bodies analysis.
CFDRC's extensive research in advancement of numerical methods,
physical models and new concepts under contracts sponsored by government
agencies and industry guarantees to sustain its technology leadership
CFDRC has over 130 employees (over 75 PhDs) and is headquartered
in Huntsville, AL with branch offices in Sunnyvale, CA and Stuttgart,
Germany. Worldwide representation is provided through a network
of distributors. For more information visit our web site at www.cfdrc.com.
About the da Vinci Project:
The da Vinci Project's aim of capturing the X Prize, the international "New
Race to Space®" is backed by a core of volunteers from
many walks of life and disciplines. Aerospace engineers, experts
in project management and finance contribute their time and expertise
towards the realization of the next step in Human discovery. The
da Vinci Project's novel rocket design will be launched from the
world's largest reusable helium balloon at an altitude of 80,000
feet (24,400 meters). To learn more, visit www.davinciproject.com.
About the X PRIZE:
The X PRIZE competition, the first-ever space-based incentive
competition, follows in the footsteps of more than 100 aviation
incentive prizes offered early last century, that created today's
$300 billion-dollar commercial air transport industry. The most
significant of these prizes was the Orteig Prize, won by Charles
Lindbergh for his 1927 flight from New York to Paris.
For additional information on the X PRIZE Foundation and Competition
and the more than 20 teams from around the world, visit the X PRIZE
Foundation on the web at www.xprize.org.
For more information, please contact: