Propellant vaporization as a criterion for rocket engine design : relation between percentage of propellant vaporized and engine performance

Marcus F. Heidmann, Richard J. Priem
Mar 1958

An analysis is presented on the quantitative effect of incomplete propellant vaporization on rocket-engine performance. A relation between characteristic exhaust velocity c* and the percentages of oxidant and fuel vaporized and burned is given. The analysis shows that c* efficiencies of 70 to 90 percent can be realized when only half the fuel is vaporized, whereas c* efficiencies of about 60 percent can be realized when half the oxidant is vaporized. The specific relations between c* and propellant vaporized are presented graphically for the hydrogen-fluorine, hydrogen-oxygen, ammonia-fluorine, and JP-4 - oxygen propellant combinations. The analysis is applied to experimental data for these propellant combinations.

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