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Numerical Evaluation of the Use of Aluminum Particles for Enhancing Solid Rocket Motor Combustion Stability

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journal contribution
posted on 21.05.2021, 17:17 authored by David Greatrix
The ability to predict the expected internal behaviour of a given solid-propellant rocket motor under transient conditions is important. Research towards predicting and quantifying undesirable transient axial combustion instability symptoms typically necessitates a comprehensive numerical model for internal ballistic simulation under dynamic flow and combustion conditions. On the mitigation side, one in practice sees the use of inert or reactive particles for the suppression of pressure wave development in the motor chamber flow. With the focus of the present study placed on reactive particles, a numerical internal ballistic model incorporating relevant elements, such as a transient, frequency-dependent combustion response to axial pressure wave activity above the burning propellant surface, is applied to the investigation of using aluminum particles within the central internal flow (particles whose surfaces nominally regress with time, as a function of current particle size, as they move downstream) as a means of suppressing instability-related symptoms in a cylindrical-grain motor. The results of this investigation reveal that the loading percentage and starting size of the aluminum particles have a significant influence on reducing the resulting transient pressure wave magnitude.