Photographic study of combustion in a rocket engine I : variation in combustion of liquid oxygen and gasoline with seven methods of propellant injection

Donald R. Bellman, Jack C. Humphrey
Aug 1948

Motion pictures at camera speeds up to 3000 frames per second were taken of the combustion of liquid oxygen and gasoline in a 100-pound-thrust rocket engine. The engine consisted of thin contour and injection plates clamped between two clear plastic sheets forming a two-dimensional engine with a view of the entire combustion chamber and nozzle. A photographic investigation was made of the effect of seven methods of propellant injection on the uniformity of combustion. From the photographs, it was found that the flame front extended almost to the faces of the injectors with most of the injection methods, all the injection systems resulted in a considerable nonuniformity of combustion, and luminosity rapidly decreased in the divergent part of the nozzle. Pressure vibration records indicated combustion vibrations that approximately corresponded to the resonant frequencies of the length and the thickness of the chamber. The combustion temperature divided by the molecular weight of the combustion gases as determined from the combustion photographs was about 50 to 70 percent of the theoretical value.

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