Theoretical Analysis of Ammonium-perchlorate Based Composite Propellants with RDX Containing Small Size Particles of Beryllium


Rocket engines have been developed for at least the last six decades. There is a need to improve the actual solid propellant grain for rocket engines through the addiction of metallic fuels in the mixture as well as the addiction of energetic binders to stabilize the combustion. The rocket industry expects the launchers to be reliable, to be faster, stable and to have longer times of operation for the most possible payload weight (operational envelope). New propellants should have optimized ignition and combustion time rates reducing the possibility of negative oxygen balance thus reducing detonation process. Deflagration process should be optimized for best performance of the rocket. In this evolution, small quantities of explosives have been used in the propellant in order to increase the operational burning time, hence, the specific impulse. Adding metallic fuels such as aluminum, boron or beryllium on double based composite propellants and ammonium perchlorate are expected to increase the propellant density over chemical stability and aging resistance. The study of heterogeneous propellants containing large amounts of fine beryllium and ammonium perchlorate,   it is necessary to understand the combustion products so to a proper evaluation of specific impulse, Mach number and mass flow of the mixture. In this study a mixture with nitramides (RDX – Cyclotrimethylene trinitramide) and ammonium perchlorate was analyzed with and without the addiction of small size particles of beryllium using a numerical algorithm. Therefore, this study relates the influence of beryllium  in the performance parameters of ammonium perchlorate based composite propellants.

Keywords: Propellant, Rocket engine, RDX, Ammonium perclorate

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