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Aeroballistic Research Facility

Copyright 1999-2022 John Cipolla/AeroRocket.ll rights reserved.

John Cipolla was the primary USAF civilian aerospace engineer responsible for designing the 800-foot long Aeroballistic Research Facility (ARF) located at Eglin AFB in Florida. As the primary mechanical designer of the ARF, John Cipolla was responsible for design, fabrication and installation for dozens of major ARF components. For ARF development, John Cipolla designed the free-flight instrumentation used to measure subsonic, supersonic and hypersonic projectile position, velocity, stability derivatives and aerodynamic coefficients. Free-flight tests conducted in the ARF are used to validate high-speed projectile designs and related Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis results. The ARF engineering design effort continues to have a direct positive impact on many Army, USAF and NASA projects. John Cipolla utilized the ARF to publish AIAA research papers concerning Interferometric analyses of cone-cylinder-flare bodies in hypersonic flight and the analysis of slender missile configurations in supersonic flight to validate the Eagle CFD code. Many USAF/AFAL civilian and military personnel used the ARF to publish dozens of AIAA research papers.

NOTE: In addition to authoring the Eagle CFD manuals, John Cipolla performed the first validation analyses of the Eagle CFD code that ultimately formed the basis of the Beggar CFD code used by the United States Air Force SEEK EAGLE Office (AFSEO) to predict time accurate store separation from transonic and supersonic aircraft.

1. "A Unique Alignment System", AFAL paper describing ARF design, 1975.
2. "Program EAGLE Users Manual", AFATL-TR-88-117, Vol. I, 1988.
3. "Program EAGLE Numerical Grid Generation System User's Manual", AFATL-TR-87-15, Vol. II, 1988
4. "Aerodynamic Test and Analysis of a Slender Generic Missile Configuration", AIAA-89-3368, (1989)
5. "Computational and Experimental Interferometric Analysis of a Cone-Cylinder Flare Body",
AFAL, 1989

Thank you.
John Cipolla
Chief Aerodynamicist

Aeroballistic Reearch Facility Design by John Cipolla
Figure 1, From the paper  "A Unique Ballistic Tunnel Measurement System" by John Cipolla
describing the Aeroballistic Research Facility (ARF). Engineering drawing by John Cipolla (1974).

Hypersonic missile In free flight in ARF
Figure 2,
Free flight hypersonic missile tested at the ARF.