The current stable distribution of PARACHUTES is version 2.0. Its main features are:
Fully coupled explicit solution of parachute-payload systems.
Aerodynamic, structural and trajectory data for design and testing can be obtained with low computational requirements.
User-specified maneuvers can be performed during the simulation. The software can be also adapted to test automatic control and guidance strategies (GNC).
User-friendly graphical interface based on CIMNE's pre and post-processor GiD (visit www.gidhome.com).
Satisfactory parallel scalability in modest hardware platforms.
The solution modules can be used independently. This allows solving different aerodynamic and structural problems (subject to prescribed steady or unsteady loads) into the same program environment.
The software can be customized to meet users' specific needs.
Since PARACHUTES is a program in development, improvements and new features will be gradually incorporated in future software releases. Some of the current lines of investigation are:
Semi-empirical models for parachute deployment and inflation.
Improved reefing strategies (sliding cables and contact algorithms).
Vortex methods for simulating flow separation (intended for circular parachutes).