The effects of nozzle geometry on particle size distribution in a small two dimensional rocket motor
Brennan, William Dennis
Netzer, David Willis
Hauser, James P.
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Laser diffraction particle sizing was conducted at the nozzle entrance, inside the nozzle, and in the exhaust plume of a small two-dimensional rocket motor using two different metallized propellants to determine the effects of nozzle geometry on particle breakup. Six different nozzles were used, including three converging nozzles and three converging/diverging nozzles. An AP-GAP/AI propellant containing 4.69 percent aluminum showed no significant effects of nozzle geometry on exhaust plume particle size. Exhaust plume measurements showed consistent results under various conditions, indicating that the particle breakup had been completed at the nozzle throat. The particle size distribution was successfully tracked through the motor for one particular converging section, with particle breakup inside the nozzle occurring prior to that predicted by theoretical analysis. An AP/HTPB/ZrC propellant containing 1/0 percent zirconium carbide exhibited particle size variation in the exhaust plume, but sparse data and varying combustion chamber pressures precluded isolation of the causal factor. Additionally, combustion chamber pressure was shown to decrease measured particle size inside the motor for both propellants. Extensive particle sizing validation experiments using particles of known size suspended in distilled water were conducted throughout the course of the investigation to assist interpretation of laser diffraction particle sizing data.
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