A conceptual design of an Earth return vehicle is presented with the goal of safely returning biological samples from orbit. Key entry, descent, and landing trade studies were completed at the conceptual level for two different mission scenarios: return from the International Space Station and an autonomous, free-flying vehicle returning from low Earth orbit. The analyses that follow for each key subsystem drove design decisions to create the Biopan Deployment in Orbit for Microgravity Exposure vehicle with the versatility to satisfy both of the aforementioned mission scenarios. The final design features a ballistic entry, a 45 deg sphere–cone aeroshell with a diameter of 88 cm, a phenolic impregnated carbon ablator heat shield with a thickness of 7.7 cm, and a passive landing system containing an 8-m-diam ringsail parachute combined with a 7.8-cm-thick crushable carbon foam. Analysis of the vehicle performance verified survivability of biological samples due to heat and deceleration loads from entry. Trajectory dispersion analysis yielded crossrange and downrange limited to and , respectively, whereas landing velocity was confirmed to be for all cases.
 , “To Boldly Go: Growing Cells in Zero Gravity to Treat Stroke,” Mayo Clinic Magazine, Vol. 29, No. 1, 2015, pp. 10–11, http://www.mayo.edu/pmts/mc2300-mc2399/mc2386-2901.pdf [retrieved Sept. 2016].
 , “Entry, Descent, and Landing Operations Analysis for the Stardust Entry Capsule,” Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Vol. 45, No. 6, Nov.–Dec. 2008, pp. 1262–1268. doi:https://doi.org/10.2514/1.37090 JSCRAG 0022-4650
 “TVA Selected for NASA Flight Opportunities Program,” Terminal Velocity Aerospace, LLC, http://terminalvelocityaero.com/pdf/TVA_PR_FlightOppyNASA_14Apr2015.pdf [retrieved Sept. 2016].
 “ISS National Lab Project Pipeline: Intuitive Machines-ISS Terrestrial Return Vehicle (TRV),” ISS U.S. National Lab., http://www.spacestationresearch.com/research-on-station/projects/ [retrieved Sept. 2016].
 , “BIOPAN Experiment LICHENS on the Foton M2 Mission Pre-Flight Verification Tests of the Rhizocarpon Geographicum-Granite Ecosystem,” Advances in Space Research, Vol. 40, No. 11, 2007, pp. 1665–1671. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2007.02.022 ASRSDW 0273-1177
 , “Poster: Biopan—A Multi-Purpose Exposure Facility for Space Research,” Proceedings of the 6th European Space Mechanisms & Tribology Symposium, ESA SP-374, European Space Agency, Technopark, Zurich, Aug. 1995.
 “Japanese Experiment Module (JEM)/Kibo (Hope),” Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington D.C., http://www.nasa.gov/externalflash/ISSRG/pdfs/jem.pdf [retrieved Nov. 2014].
 “Chapter 6: FOTON Retrievable Capsules,” European Users Guide to Low Gravity Platforms, European Space Agency, Rept. UIC-ESA-UM-0001, Erasmus User Centre and Communication Office, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, 2005.
 , “The Past, Present, and Future of BIOPAN,” Advances in Space Research, Vol. 36, No. 2, July 2005, pp. 311–316. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2005.07.005 ASRSDW 0273-1177
 Pegasus User’s Guide, 7th ed., Orbital Sciences Corporation, Dulles, VA, April 2010, pp. 1–39.
 , “Hypersonic Flow,” Proceedings of the 5th International Aeronautical Conference, Inst. of Aeronautical Sciences, New York, 1955, pp. 241–276.
 , “Comprehensive Model for Multicomponent Ablation Thermochemistry,” 35th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibition, AIAA Paper 1997-0141, Jan. 1997.
 , “Thermo-Chemical-Structural Analysis of Carbon-Phenolic Composites with Pore Pressure and Pyrolysis Effects,” Solid Propulsion Integrity Program, Document HI-017F/1.2.5, Costa Mesa, CA, Aug. 1992.
 , “Testing of SLA-561V in NASA-Ames Turbulent Flow Duct with Augmented Radiative Heating,” 42nd AIAA Thermophysics Conference, AIAA Paper 2011-3619, June 2011.
 , “Recovery System Design Guide,” U.S. Air Force Flight Dynamics Lab., TR-78-151, Wright–Patterson Air Force Base, OH, 1978.
 Military Specification (MIL)-C-7020H, Cloth, Parachute, Non-Rip Stop and Twill Weave, Revision H, March 1992.
 , “Mars Exploration Rover Parachute Decelerator System Program Overview,” 17th AIAA Aerodynamic Decelerator Systems Technology Conference, AIAA Paper 2003-2100, May 2003.
 , “Parachute Mortar Design,” Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Vol. 11, No. 4, 1974, pp. 246–251. doi:https://doi.org/10.2514/3.62051 JSCRAG 0022-4650
 “Study of Pressure Packing Techniques for Parachutes,” U.S. Air Force, TR ASD-TR-61-426, Wright-Patterson AFB, OH, 1962.
 , “Planetary Entry, Descent and Landing Shortcourse Notes,” Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA, 2014.
 , “A Passive Earth-Entry Capsule for Mars Sample Return,” 7th AIAA/ASME Joint Thermophysics and Heat Transfer Conference, AIAA Paper 1998-2851, June 1998.
 , “Earth Entry Vehicle for Mars Sample Return,” International Astronautic Federation Rept. IAF-00-Q.3.04, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Oct. 2000.
 , “Design, Fabrication and Testing of a Crushable Energy Absorber for a Passive Earth Entry Vehicle,” NASA CR-2002-211425, April 2002.
 , “Numerical Simulation of Supersonic Flow Past Reentry Capsules,” Shock Waves, Vol. 15, No. 1, March 2006, pp. 31–41. doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00193-005-0003-0 SHWAEN 0938-1287
 “Duocel Carbon Foam,”ERG Materials and Aerospace Corp., Oakland, CA, Oct. 2013, http://www.ergaerospace.com/images/ERG%20Data%20Sheets%203.pdf [retrieved Feb. 2015].
 “Orbital ATK Space Propulsion Products Catalog,” Orbital ATK Aerospace Group, Magna, UT, Aug. 2012, Paper 12-S-1902.
 , “Entry Dispersion Analysis for the Stardust Comet Sample Return Capsule,” Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, Vol. 36, No. 3, May–June 1999, pp. 463–469. doi:https://doi.org/10.2514/2.3467 JSCRAG 0022-4650
 , “The NASA/MSFC Global Reference Atmospheric Model—1995 Version (GRAM-95),” NASA TM-4715, Aug. 1995.
 , “Stardust Entry: Landing and Population Hazards in Mission Planning and Operations,” AIAA/AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference and Exhibit, AIAA Paper 2006-6412, Aug. 2006.
 “Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, 3 Arc Second Scene,” Global Land Cover Facility, Univ. of Maryland SRTM_u03_n008e004, Unfilled Unfinished 2.0, College Park, MD, Feb. 2000.
 “2010 TIGER/Line Shapefiles,” U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, MD, March 2012, https://www.census.gov/geo/maps-data/data/tiger.html [retrieved Nov. 2014].