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NASA SP-125

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID
ROCKET PROPELLANT
ENGINES
Dieter
Rocketdyne

_,,x

K.

Huzel

Division,

and
North

David

H.

American

Huang
Aviation,

Inc.

:e_ ,

31

_:_

'2'/

Scientific
OFFICE
NATIONAL

and
Technical
Information
Division
OF TECHNOLOGY
UTILIZATION
AERONAUTICS

AND

SPACE

1967
ADMINISTRATION
Washington,

D, C.

FORE

made

Success
in this

WORD

in space demands
perfection.
Many of the brilliant
vast,
austere
environment
seem almost miraculous.

achievements
Behind each

apparent
miracle,
however,
stands the flawless
performance
of numerous
highly
complex systems.
All are important.
The failure of only one portion of a launch
vehicle
or spacecraft
may cause
failure of an entire mission.
But the first to
feel this awesome imperative
for perfection
are the propulsion
systems, especially
the engines.
Unless they operate flawlessly
first, none of the other systems
will
get a chance to perform in space.
Perfection
begins in the design of space hardware.
This book emphasizes
quality and reliability
in the design
of propulsion
and engine systems.
It draws
deeply from the vast know-how and experience
which have been the essence
of
several
well-designed,
reliable
systems
of the past and present.
And, wi_h a
thoroughness
and completeness
not previously
available,
it tells how the present
high state of reliability,
gained through years of research
and testing,
can be
maintained,
and perhaps improved,
in engines of the future.
As man ventures
deeper into space
to explore
the planets,
the search
for
perfection
in the design of propulsion
systems
will continue.
This book will aid
materially
in achieving
this goal.
WERNHER
Director

VON

BRAUN

Matshall_pace Flight Center, NASA

iii

PREFACE
This book intends to build a bridge for the student and the young engineer:
to link the rocket
propulsion
fundamentals
and elements
(which are well covered in the literature)
with the actual rocket
engine design and development
work as it is carried out in industry (which is very little, if at all
covered in literature).
The book attempts
to further the understanding
of the realistic
application
of
liquid rocket propulsion
theories,
and to help avoid or at least reduce time and money consuming
errors and disappointments.
In so doing, it also attempts
to digest and consolidate
numerous closely
related subjects,
hitherto
often treated as separate,
bringing them up to date at the same time.
The book was written

"on the job"

for use by those

active

in all phases

of engine

systems

design,
development,
and application,
in industry as well as government
agencies.
Since it addresses
itself to human beings set out to create new machines,
rather than describing
machines
about to
dominate man, the language
chosen may not always be "functional"
in the strict sense of the word.
The book presents
sufficient
detail to familiarize
and educate thoroughly
those responsible
for
various aspects
of liquid propellant
rocketry,
including
engine systems design,
engine development,
and flight vehicle application.
It should enable the rocket engineer to conduct,
independently,
complete or partial engine systems
preliminary
detail designs and to understand
and judge the activities
in, and the problems,
limitations,
and "facts of life" of the various subsystems
making up a complete
engine system.
It also attempts
to educate those ultimately
interested
in specialized
subsystems
and
component
design (thrust chamber, turbopump,
control valves,
etc.) about their own as well as neighboring subsystems
and about the complete engine system.
This should enable the student to prepare
realistic
analytical
calculations
and design layouts with a long headstart
toward the final specialized
designs
for subsystem
production
release.
Special emphasis
has been placed on engine flight application
to stimulate
engine systems
and
subsystem
designers
to think in these terms from the outset.
The book is intended
as a textbook,
with specific
consideration
of the teacher without industry experience.
We hope it will stimulate
those desiring
to specialize
in the area of a rocket engine subsystem
by supplying
adequate
information to enable them to benefit fully from the specialized
literature.
Thus it provides a realistic
expert
introduction
for those joining the liquid propellant
rocket engine field.
We gratefully
acknowledge
the most valuable
assistance
by members of the Rocketdyne
and the
Space Divisions
of North American Aviation,
Inc., Los Angeles.
We are particularly
indebted
to R. E.
Grate, C. A. MacGregor,
H. M. Alexander,
S. B. Macaluso and T. Holwager of Rocketdyne
Division,
and to R. E. G. Epple, R. W. Westrup, R. D. Hammond, and D. A. Engels of Space Division,
who
reviewed the various chapters
of the manuscript
and contributed
valuable
ideas.

inspired

Special recognition
goes to R. F. Strauss of Astrosystems
International,
the manuscript
and rendered valuable
assistance
during the various

New Jersey,
who
phases of its preparation.

In particular,
the authors are indebted to the manifold support they received
from North American
Aviation,
Inc., and its divisions.
Rocketdyne's
engine technology
has provided a major foundation
for the book.
Dieter

K. Huzel

David H. Huang

CONTENTS

Chapter I. INTRODUCTION
TO LIQUID PROPELLANT
ROCKET
ENGINES
1.1 The Generation of Thrust by a Rocket Engine ......................................
1.2 The Gas-Flow Processes in the Combustion Chamber and the Nozzle ..................

i
4

1.3 Performance Parameters of a Liquid PropellantRocket Engine .......................


1.4 Liquid Rocket Propellants.......................................................
1.5 The Basic Elements of a Liquid PropellantRocket Engine System ....................

10
18
21

Chapter II. ROCKET


2.1
2.2
2.3
2.4
2.5

ENGINE

DESIGN

IMPLEMENTS

The Major Rocket Engine Design Parameters .......................................


The Importance of Design Quality.................................................
Systems Analysis and Design Layout .............................................
Stress Analysis ................................................................
Selectionof Materials...........................................................

Chapter III.INTRODUCTION
TO SAMPLE
CALCULATIONS
3.1 Approach ......................................................................
3.2 A-I Stage Engine ...............................................................
3.3 A-2 Stage Engine ...............................................................
3.4 A-3 Stage Engine ...............................................................
3.5 A-4 Stage Engine ...............................................................
Chapter IV. DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION
4.1 The Basic Thrust Chamber Elements
..............................................
4.2 Thrust Chamber Performance
Parameters ...........................................
4.3 Thrust Chamber Configuration
Layout .............................................
4.4 Thrust Chamber Cooling .........................................................
4.5 Injector Design .................................................................
4.6 Gas-Generating
Devices .........................................................
4.7 Ignition Devices ................................................................
4.8 Combustion Instability
..........................................................
Chapter
5.1
5.2
5.3
5.4
5.5
5.6

V.

DESIGN

OF PRESSURIZED-GAS

PROPELLANT-FEED

31
50
51
56
59

63
64
68
72
74

DEVICES
81
83
86
98
121
131
136
143

SYSTEMS

Determinationof Pressurant Requirements .........................................


Stored Gas Systems .............................................................
PropellantEvaporation Systems ..................................................
Systems Evaporating Nonpropellants..............................................
Systems Using Products of Chemical Reactions.....................................
Selectionof the PressurizationSystem ............................................

151
156
165
167
167
173

vii

viii

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

Page
Chapter
6.1
6.2
6.3
6.4
6.5
6.6
6.7

YI. DESIGN OF TURBOPUMP


PROPELLANT-FEED
SYSTEMS
Elements
of Turbopump Propellant
Feed Systems ...................................
Turbopump System Performance
and Desi_ou Parameters
..............................
Design of Centrifugal
Pumps .....................................................
Design of Axial-Flow
Pumps .....................................................
Design of Turbines
.............................................................
Design of Turbopump
Bearings,
Seals, and Gears ...................................
Design Layout of Turbopump Assemblies
..........................................

176
186
204
225
238
257
261

Chapter VII. DESIGN OF CONTROLS AND VALVES


7.1
Control Methods ...............................................................
7.2
Basic Liquid Propellant
Rocket Engine Control Systems ............................
7.3
Engine Thrust Level Control ....................................................
7.4
Propellant-Mixture-Ratio
and Propellant-Utilization
Control .........................
7.5
Thrust-Vector
Control ..........................................................
7.6
Design Considerations
for Fluid-Flow
Control Components
..........................
7.7
Design of Dynamic Seals for Fluid-Flow-Control
Components ........................
7.8
Design of Propellant
Valves ....................................................
7.9
Design of Control Pilot Valves ..................................................
7.10 Design of Fixed-Area-Type
Regulating
Devices ....................................
7.11 Design of Servovalves ..........................................................
7.12 Design of Gas Pressure
Regnalators ..............................................
7.13 Design of Liquid Flow and Pressure
Regulators
...................................
7.14 Design of Pressure
Relief Valves ................................................
7.15 Design of Miscellaneous
Valves .................................................
Chapter
8.1
8.2
8.3
8.4
8.5
8.6
8.7
8.8

VIII. DESIGN OF PROPELLANT


TANKS
Basic Design Configurations
of Propellant
Tanks ...................................
General Design Considerations
for Propellant Tanks ................................
Structural
Design of Propellant
Tanks .............................................
Design of Storable Liquid Propellant
Tanks ........................................
Design of Cryogenic
Liquid Propellant
Tanks and Their Insulation
....................
Design of Fiber-Glass
Filament-Wound
Liquid Propellant
Tanks ......................
Design of Propellant
Tank Pressurant
Diffusers
....................................
Propellant
Expulsion
Under Zero Gravity or Oscillatory
G-Loading Conditions

Chapter
9.1
9.2
9.3
9.4
9.5
9.6

IX. DESIGN OF INTERCONNECTING


COMPONENTS
AND MOUNTS
The Principal
Interconnecting
Components
and Mounts ...............................
Design of Tubings and Tube Fittings ..............................................
Design of Flange Joints .........................................................
Design of Brazed Joints for Rocket Engines ........................................
Design of Ducts for Rocket Engines ...............................................
Design of Gimbal Mounts ........................................................

Chapter X. ENGINE SYSTEMS DESIGN INTEGRATION


10.1 Systems Engineering
...........................................................
10.2 Engine System Design Integration
by Dynamic Analyses
............................
10.3 Design Integration
for Engine System Calibration
..................................
10.4 Engine System Integrated
Performance
Characteristics
..............................
10.5 Mechanical
Integration
of Engine Systems .........................................
10.6 Electrical
System ..............................................................

263
265
267
268
272
280
289
294
301
307
309
315
321
322
325

..........

329
332
336
343
345
348
349
349

353
358
360
370
372
379

383
384
390
394
399
403

CONTENTS

iX

Page
10.7
10.8
10.9

Engine Instrumentation
.........................................................
Clustering
of Liquid Propellant
Rocket Engines
...................................
Engine-to-Vehicle
Interface .....................................................

411
415
419

Chapter
11.1
11.2
11.3
11.4

Xl. DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT


SPACE ENGINES
PrincipalSpace Engine Applications.............................................
General Design Considerations..................................................
Design of SpacecraftMain Propulsion Systems.....................................
Design of Reaction Control Engine Systems .......................................

429
430
435
442

INDEX

..............................................................................

451

Chapter
Introduction

To

Liquid

Propellant

In order that the reader may better understand


the basic laws and the operation
of liquid propellant
rocket engine systems,
a brief review of
the fundamentals
is presented.

1.1

THE GENERATION
OF THRUST
BY A ROCKET ENGINE

The function of a chemical


rocket engine
system is to generate thrust through combustion;
i.e., release of thermal energy derived from the
chemical
energy of the propellants.
The generated force (pressure)
imparts a momentum to the
combustion
products.
In accordance
with the
basic laws of motion, a momentum in the opposite direction
is also imparted to the vehicle.
In
practice,
high temperature,
high-pressure
gases
are produced
in combustion
chambers
through
chemical
reactions
of either solid or liquid propellants.
These gases are ejected through a
nozzle at high velocity.
The operation
of a
rocket engine system is independent
of its environment
except for slight effects on performance caused by ambient air pressure.
The rocket
or, in a more general sense, the "reaction
motor"
presently
is the only practical
device able to
propel a vehicle in space.
Let us examine briefly the process
of thrust
generation
and summarize the most frequently
used laws and formulae needed to design the
shape and to predict the behavior of a rocket
engine.
These laws are mere adaptations
of
basis physical
laws.
We know that
F= ma

(1-1)

Force equals mass times acceleration.


We also
know that the velocity
increase
experienced
by
the accelerated
mass, during the time the force
is imparted,
is
v = at

(1-2)

Rocket

Combining
obtain

these

Engines

two fundamental

F =t

relations,

we

(1-3)

This expression,
known as the momentum theorem, is the basic thrust equation for rocket engines.
When applied to rocket engines,
the term
for mass, m, and the term for velocity,
v, may
apply either to the vehicle or to the ejected
gases.
The products of v and m, in opposite
directions,
must be equal, as prescribed
by the
law of action and reaction.
This condition exists
even in a "tiedown"
static rocket firing.
In this
case, however, the "vehicle
mass" (the earth) is
so large that reaction
effects are undetectable.
The vehicle designer
is primarily
interested
in the utilization
of the engine thrust available
for the acceleration
of the vehicle,
which at any
point

of the trajectory

may be expressed

F = Wmf = Wma

as

(1-3a)

The vehicle designer


uses this equation
for vehicle design and trajectory
calculations,
properly
considering
that thrust F and vehicle mass Wm
change during flight.
In contrast,
the engine designer
and builder
is primarily concerned
with the generation
of
thrust.
His attention,
therefore,
is focused on
the efficient
conversion
of the chemical
energy
of the propellants
into thermal energy, and thus
into kinetic energy of the gaseous
combustion
products.
His particular
concern is to do this in
the most efficient
way. For the designer,
the
basic equation (1-3) may be rewritten
as

_F =-_Ve = fnVe

(1-3b)

where m is the mass flow rate of the gases,


and
v e is their velocity
at the nozzle exit.
Even in

DESIGN OF LIQUID

this

simple

given

form,

mass

it becomes

flow

rate,

clear

thrust

that,

will

particular
also
is

the

thrust

subject
a function

that

all

of all

internal
of this

momentum

liquid

and

(fig.

exit

in

engine,

of the

thrust

plane,

is
states

assumes

that

propellants

can

i.e.,

the

static

plane

flow

be neglected
exit

all

lines.

on

to the
The
with

the

is often

referred

AeP e as

the

is

not

that

is

one-

molecules

that

1-1).

have

inside
portion

form

not

all

pressure

of the

converted

chamber

nozzle.

gas

the

generation

convert,

of the

forces
gas

has

at maximum

avail-

not

a
re-

been

used

for

It is

the

chamber

efficiency,

energy

words,
by the

momentum.
thrust

in
indi-

kinetic

generated

energy

thrust

AePe

In other

pressure

of gas

function

term

into

and

pressure
generation

of the

of chemical

cific

of thrust

gas

thrust,

The

presence

of the

lease

momentum

thrust.

the

of the

expression--re

The
been

the

the

pressure

a desirable

rocketry.
cates

a container

to as

The

velocity

and

plane

The

abso-

Ae (in2).

injection

the

that

on parallel

is
exit

the

through

dimensional;

able

F_

psia)

in the

of gases

move

acting

chamber,

or

pressure

the

surface.

is such

of the
flow

which

(1-3b)

is equal

out

rocket

of tile

vehicle,

forces

container

gas

equation

of a container,

external

flowing

propellant

inclusion

out

Pe (lb/in2

lute

with

environment,
Equation

is flowing

surfaces

total

of the

pressure

of altitude.

if a mass

sum

chamber

to the

ROCKET ENGINES

where

for a

increase

increased
gas velocities
obtained.
It should
be remembered
that the

PROPELLANT

spe-

nozzle

the

to

available

...........

chamber
_

pressure

obtain

Pe

into

maximum

gas

thrust

momentum,

for a given

and

thus

propellant

flow

rate.
We now
Figure

a finite

I-1

altitude
Let
ated

us first

assume

at an ambient

condition).

that

the chamber

pressure

Then,

the

net

is

oper-

Pa = 0 (high-altitude
force

acting

on the

gas in the chamber


is the sum of the reactions
from the chamber
walls
and of the reaction
of the
absolute

gas

reaction

forces

ing

to the

the

gas

of the

pressure
are

at the
opposed

momentum

must

exit.
(fig.

theorem,

be equal

to the

the

These
1-1).
net

momentum

two
Accord-

force
flux

acting

have

no effect

ever.

these

pressure
are

chamber:

on the

A e, the

access

to it.
a net

the

cancel

onto

this

rocket

the

the

exit

not

have

Pa thus

cre-

projected

thrust)

term

thrust

gases

in the

Pa does

(opposing

Including

general

of the

Since

pressure

force

walls
How-

part

AePa.
velocity

ambient

area

chamber

inside.

pressure

unbalanced

Aep a.

(1-5),

on the

supersonic

ambient

chamber

nitude

gas

at

2) (low-

pressure

of the

forces

The

is operated

resulting

by an amount

with

plane

rocket

Pa > 0 (lb/in

outside

pressure

flowing

the

The

on the

thrust

thrust

out

that
pressure

condition).

forces

ates

on

assume

ambient

of mag-

in equation

equation

is ob-

tained:

Ptc

dA-

AePe

--_-V

F =/2: Ve.
g

tC

Tile
acts
hicle.

integral
on the

describes
that force
F (Ib) which
thrust
chamber
and thus on the ve-

We can

write:

The

following

standing

of the

pose
F-AePe

=_Ve

(1-4)

equation

movable
ber

and

pressure),

or

F = W---ve+ AePe
g

(1-5)

and

(1-6).

extend

the

terms

which

Let

,nass),

a piston

(fig.

may
of the

a spring

(representing
rack

1-2).

(1-6)

us assume

(representing

a stationary

ditions)

- Pc)

model
nature

cylinder
vehicle

Ae(Pe

(representing

the

undercom-

we have
thrust

cham-

(representing
the

gas
ambient

gas
mass),
con-

INTRODUCTIONTO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

MOVEABLE
THRUST

CYLINCER
CHAMBER

(REPRESENTING
AND

(g/_/)indicatesthatoptimum ve has not been


obtained.

VEHICLE)

MASS)

Sample

Calculation

(I-1)

-l_:,Ig_YI'iY'_LI
_U-- -T.

(REPRESENTING
GAS PRESSURE)

'_- STATIONA RY RACK


(REPRESENTING
AMBIENT
CONBITION$)

Figure

I-2

The spring is so made that its end slips sideways upon reaching
the end of the cylinder
and
engages
the stationary
rack.
The cylinder is
suspended
in a suitable
manner to move freely.
When releasing
the spring force ("Pc"), the
"gas" is expelled to the rear. If, upon reaching
the chamber exit, some spring force remains,
the
spring engages
the rack and continues
to act
upon the cylinder,
but ceases to act upon the
"gas."
We find that the model works for all
cases:
underexpanded
(as assumed above, where
spring free length is longer than cylinder length);
overexpanded
(spring free length is less than
cylinder length and the spring force is exhausted
prior to the "gas" reaching
the exit, the "gas"
therefore
being subject to deceleration
within
the cylinder);
and ideal expansion
(where spring
free length equals cylinder length).
The model can also illustrate
the case of the
overexpanded
nozzle without jet separation,
which will be further explained
below.
This
situation
is equivalent
to that of the inertia of
piston ("gas")
and spring pulling the spring beyond its null point.
The negative-loaded
spring,
in engaging the rack ("ambient"),
will pull the
cylinder backward.
Equation
(1-6) is often expressed
as

F:c--

Where c is defined
velocity

(ft/sec)

as the effective

(1-7)

exhaust

and comprises

c= v e + Ae(Pe - Pa) (g./W)

(1-8)

The effective
exhaust velocity
is not the
actual gas velocity
except when Pe : Pa where
becomes
equal to Ve. As explained
with equation (1-6), the presence
of a term Ae(Pe- Pa)

The following data are given for a liquid propellant rocket engine:
thrust, F : 100 000 lb at
sea level;
propellant
consumption
rate, g/= 369.3
Ib/sec;
thrust chamber exit area, A e = 760.8 in 2"
gas exit static pressure, Pe : 10.7 psia; ambient
pressure,
Pa : 14.7 psia (sea level);
gravitational
constant,
g: 32.2 ft/sec _.
From what we have just learned,
we will determine (a_) gas exhaust velocity,
(_b_)engine
thrust in space, and (c__)the effective
exhaust
velocities
at sea level and in space.
Solution
(a) From equation
velocity

(1-6) the gas exhaust

ve : IF - Ae(P e - pa)](g/g/)
= [100 000-

760.8(10.7-

14.7)](32.2/369.3)

: 9040 ft/sec
Our calculation

assumes

long for sea-level


the fact that Pe is
"undershoot"
and
shoot" occurred.
i.e., if the nozzle

a nozzle

somewhat

too

conditions,
as indicated
by
smaller than Pa; a pressure
an exhaust velocity
"overIf no jet separation
occurred,
remained
_filled" to the exit

plane, the calculation


is valid.
The "penalty"
of incorrect
nozzle length simply appears
as the
negative thrust term Ae(Pe-Pa).
If jet separation does occur within the nozzle,
or if it is
combined with decelerating
shock waves, the
situation
becomes
considerably
more complicated
and requires
elaborate
mathematical
treatment.
However, there should be no concern at this point.
From equation
(1-6), we know that the difference in thrust between space and sea level is
AeP a. Since the nozzle selected
was too long at
sea level, this thrust increase
AeP a during rocket
ascent will be obtained
in two distinct
steps.
First, by reduction of the negative
thrust term
Ae(Pe-Pa)
to zero.
This will occur when Pe = Pa;
that is, when the rising vehicle reaches
an altitude where Pa = 10.7 psia, in our specific
case.
As we have learned, this represents
ideal expansion.
As the vehicle continues
to ascend farther

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

and eventually
reaches
Pa---0, the increase
of
Ae(Pe- Pa) raises the
combined effect of the
simply the elimination
nozzle is filled at all
Thus,

we obtain

"empty space" where


the positive
term
thrust level farther.
The
two phases,
however, is
of paAe, provided the
times.

engine

F= 100000+760.8
(c) From equation
velocity
at sea level

thrust

in space:

14.7= 111 183.8 lb


(1-8) the effective
results

exhaust

c = v e + Ae(Pe - pa)(g/W)
=9040-_760.8(10._-

14.,)
_

(32.2,' 369.3)

ROCKET ENGINES

(4)
(5)
(6)
(7)

ible, it is additionally
called an isentropic process.
No friction
Steady flow rate
One-dimensional
flow (all gas molecules
move on parallel lines)
Velocity
uniformity across
any section
normal to chamber axis

(8) Chemical equilibrium


established
within
the combustion
chamber and not shifting
in the nozzle.
Certain correction
factors,
usually empirically
obtained,
will be applied to the results
derived
from these ideal assumptions
in the actual design of a rocket and for the prediction
of its
behavior.

= 8772, ft/sec
and in space
c= v e + AePe(g/_l)
= 9040 + 760.8 10.7 (32.2,/369.3)
= 9750 ft/sec

1.2

THE GAS-FLOW PROCESSES


IN THE
COMBUSTION CHAMBER AND THE
NOZZLE

Since the analytical


treatment of compressible fluids flowing through cylindrical
ducts and
nozzles
can be found in standard
aerodynamics
and thermodynamics
textbooks,
no attempt will
be mad'_ here to derive basic equations
governing
gas flows.
Rather, significant
applications
of
those equations
used in actual rocket design are
presented.
The parameters
and terms applicable
to gas
flows in a liquid propellant
rocket thrust chamber
are shown in figure I-3 and table 1-1. These
parameters
serve to define the characteristics
of
gas flow at various points within the thrust chamber. Gas-flow calculations
for rocket thrustchamber design
ideal conditions:

usually

assume

The Perfect

At any section

the following

(1) Homogeneous
gas composition
(2) Perfect gas
(3) No heat transfer through the motor walls
in either direction;
i.e., adiabatic
processes.
If no increase
in entropy occurs,
i.e., if the process
is considered
revers-

Gas Law
X the peifect

gas law states:

144pxVx = RTx

The Principle

of Conservation

(1-9)

of Energy

In an adiabatic
process,
the increase
in
kinetic energy of the flowing gases between any
two points is equal to the decrease
in enthalpy.

ix _

INTRODUCTION

TABLE

l-l.-Terms

Used in the
Gas Flows

TO

LIQUID

Calculation

PROPELLANT

el

ROCKET

The Principle

of Conservation

V :
aC,

Local velocity of sound in chamber


and at nozzle throat (ft/sec);

ENGINES

AIvi
144 Vi

Axvx
= 144 Vx

of Matter

=constant

(1-11)

(at =v gy-F/_).
mc

Cylindrical

Aj, At,

chamber
(in2).
Flow areas at nozzle

Ae, Ax

exit;
axis

cross-sectional

and at any
(in2).

area

inlet,

section

The IsentropicFlow Process

of

throat

and

X normal

to

Cp, Cv

Specific
heats for constant
and for constant
volume

Gravitational
sea level).

Energy
Btu).

Mc, M i, M_, M e , Mx

Flow Mach number (v/a) at chamber;


nozzle
inlet, throat
and exit;
and at
any

pressure
(Btu/lb F).

(32.2

ft/sec

section

factor

X normal

weight

(778

injection

flow

treated
as
pressure.

equivalent

to the

end

veloc-

total

(Pc)ns

Nozzle stagnation
pressure or chamber
total pressure
at nozzle
inlet (lb/in2 );

Pi, Pt, Pc, Px

Flow static
throat
and

= pi[l + _ (y-

'.

pressures
at nozzle
inlet,
exit;
and at any section
X

normal
to axis (lb/in2).
Gas constant
(1544Dli)(ft/R)
Nozzle
stagnation
:emperature
or
chamber total temperature
(R).
(Te)ns = Ti[1 + 'z(y- 1)Mi]
Flow temperature
at nozzle
inlet,
throat,
and exit;
and at any section

Ti, T, Te, Tx

normal

Vt,

re,

to axis

(OR).

Injector
flow velocity
=0 (by assumption).
Flow velocities at nozzle inlet, throat,

Vin/

Vi,

I)Mi] Y/y-

V x

and exit; and at any section X normal to axis (ft/sec).


V_, Vt, Ve, Vx

Flow specific volumes at nozzle inlet.


throat,
exit; and at any section
X
normal to axis (fta/lb).
Steady

weight

(c

Nozzle
Nozzle

expansion
contraction

Specific

Applied to a nozzle,
of gas flowing
1

_-2(Vx

this

heat

flow

rate (lb/sec).
area ratio (Ae/At).
area ratio (Ac/At).

ratio (Cp/Cv).

yields

for unit weight

- vi:): Cp(Ti - Tx)

-1

(1-13)

Gas Flow Through Liquid PropellantRocket


Combustion Chambers

to axis.

of combustion

ities vtaj, the measurable


static
pressure
at this station
is generally

(Pc)ha

(1-12)

ft-lb/

total pressure
at injector
Because
of the relatively

low propellant

(Tc)ns

PxVxY= constant

TI/Tx:(pI/px)(Y-9"Y=(Vx/VI)Y

Chamber
(lb/in2).

piViY:

-_ at

and

conversion

Molecular
products.
(Pc)tnj

constant

For any isentropicflow process the following


relationshold between any two points:

(i-10)

The functionof a liquidrocket combustion


chamber is to convertpropellantsintohightemperature,high-pressuregas through combustionwhich releases the chemical energy of the
propellant,resultingin an increase of internal
energy of the gas. Combustion chambers are
generallytubular,as shown in figure1-3. The
liquidpropellantsare injectedat the injection
plane with a small axial velocitywhich is assumed to be zero in gas-flow calculation.The
combustion process proceeds throughoutthe
lengthof the chamber and is assumed to be completed at the nozzle inlet.As heat is liberated
between injectionplane and nozzle inlet,the
specificvolume of the gas is increased. To
satisfythe conditionsof constantmass flow, the
gas must be accelerated
toward the nozzle inlet
with some drop of pressure.
In brief, the following takes place:
The gas-flow process
within the combustion
chamber, that is, within the volume upstream of
the nozzle entrance,
is not entirely isentropic
but is a partly irreversible,
adiabatic
expansion.
Although the stagnation
temperature
or total
temperature
remains constant,
the stagnation
pressure
or total pressure
will decrease.
This
causes
permanent
energy losses,
which are a
function of the gas properties
as expressed
by y,
and of the nozzle contraction
area ratio ec or
(Ac/At).
Wherever the acceleration
of gases is
largely effected
by expansion
due to heat release,
rather than by a change of area as in a
nozzle,
the stated losses occur.
The greater the

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

contribution

of the

the

gas

zle

attached,

nozzle,

acceleration.
the

importance
comes

more

efficient
with

is

the

at the

are

maximum.

The

thrust

chamber

design

be-

as

further

in

through

It will

be discussed

great

1-4 shows

the

loss

lated

used

from

pressure

design,

Rayleigh

flow

and

are

and

and

through
sion

calcu-

process.

process,
the

the

nozzle.

tween
pressure
cific

nozzle

at

superson-

that

the

gas

flow

is an isentropic

that

both

the

remain

total

ratio

and

chamber

is called

is

expantemperature

constant

pressure

and

velocity

further

The
ratio

heat

area,

section.

pressure

throat

exit

velocity

to sonic

is assumed

and

total

to the
flow

increases

diverging

a rocket

and

The

with

to a minimum

increasing

increases

it

type,

decreasing

1-3.

then

In practice
are

then

a nozzle
in the

De Laval

area

in figure

throat

ically

as a function
of the
ratio
ec. These
data

in rocket

the

of total

throat

shown

the

for two typical


y values
nozzle
contraction
area
generally

converging-diverging

cross-sectional

losses

IV.

Figure

of the

no noz-

of ec to the

apparent.

chapter

the

Conversely,

ROCKET ENGINES

throughout

Pt/(Pc)ns

be-

the

solely

a function

= [2/(y+

1)] y/(F-0

critical
of spe-

ratio

09
1.0

Pt/(Pc)ns

08
o.

,
i.o

( CYLINDER

l
2.0

L
30

3
40 Ao/At

Figure

1-4

The

static

sonic

pressure

flow,

unit

area

The

velocity

Neglecting
i.e.,

the

flow

assuming

total
pressure
ratio
expressed
in terms
the

nozzle

inlet

velocity

Vin j = 0 and

at the

injecting

(Pc)inj

= Pinj,

(Pc)inj/(Pc)ns
of flow Mach

and

of the

the

can also be
number
Mi at

specific

heat

ratio

y:

the

occurs,

is

maximum
defined

of sound

propagation

end,

Pt at a nozzle

where

as

is equal

of a pressure

(1-16)

throat

with

weight

flow

critical

pressure.

to the

wave

per

velocity

within

of

a medium.

It is, therefore,
impossible
for a pressure
turbance
downstream
of the nozzle
throat

disto in-

fluence

of the

the

flow

at the

throat,

provided

that

create

a higher

throat

throat

this

or upstream

disturbance

pressure

will

than

the

not

critical

pressure.
(Pc)inj/(Pc)ns

It is

one

attached
(1 + yMi_)/(1

For

the

reasons

that

the

Mach

small.

mentioned
number

A typical

value

area

ratio

0.31(),:

For

the

1.2).

simplifies

)''(y-I)

above,

at the

a contraction

expression

+_'_Mi2)

it is

nozzle

for a thrust
of Ac/At=
static

(1-14)

desirable

entrance

be

chamber

with

2 is

pressure

Mi=
ratio,

the

to

that

sonic

(1-15)

Flow
The

prime

convert
tion

into

velocities.

the

The

enthalpy

sure)

at the

nozzle

sure

required

a result,

and

nozzle

nozzles

nozzle

place

exit

(ambient

take

place

are

high

most

effi-

to supersonic

conventionally

nozzle

the

through

or by

way

nozzle
may
(isen-

discontinui-

or by a combination

conditions

that

may

nozzle.

The

situations

represents

several
occur

of

of the

pos-

in a overexshown

nozzle

represent

which

was

earlier.
that

be obtained

with

the

As
must

adjustment

of nonisentropic

sible

the

pres-

velocity.

deceleration

Figure

ambient

and

This

of an overexpanded

presthe

(recovery)

throat

waves,

1-5a

is main-

than

for sonic

subsonic

shock

mentioned

thrcat

adjustment

pressure).

of an
however,

(ambient

is greater

throat

between

We see
gas

exit

at the

called

features
nozzle,

pressure

both.

combus-

thus

is the
gases

is to

back

a pressure

take

cases

of the

energy

for accelerating
Rocket

Nozzles

of a rocket

kinetic

velocity.
device

Rocket

function

efficiently

gases

exhaust
cient

Tl_ough

in the

if the

panded
Gas

velocity

even

tropic),

= 1 + y Mi 2

characteristic
or De Laval

tained

ties
Pinj/Pi

of the

diverging

pressure

nozzle,

pressures

in a supersonic
cannot

however,

supersonic

since

velocity.

lower

tba_

nozzle.
advance
the

ambient
The

upstream
gases

An exception

are

may

higher
within
flowing
is along

INTRODUCTION

TO LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

Or
EXF&NS_ON
Pe

'

Pa

JET

SEPaRaTION

*'-

I<

297

lit

,>%

iPe <

Ve =

F==

Pe

R(Tc)ns

1-

(1-

(P"_-ns

lS)

(al

Theoretical
TYPICAL

NOZZLE

PRESSURE

(I_NT

ROP!C)

gas

weight

ONLY

P_ESSURE
S_CX

DECELERATION

rate:

[
W - A_(pc)ns

TYPtCAL
THROUGH

flow

RECOVERY

y+t

_gT[2/(Y

RECOVERY
WAVES
(NON-

(ISEN

+ 1)]Y:-I

(i-19)

R-- L

TROPPC],

(P,)-4_

Theoretical

,
i

_ESSURE

TYPlCAL
THROUGH

- -"--k/

''

PRESSURE

ONLY

nozzle

ALONG

(
EXPANSION

(P I

1-5.-a,

and

of

jet

in

nozzle

ary

subsonic

may

advance

pressure

that

point

fluenced
angle,

jet
the

wall
other

may

the

the

factors,

- \(Pc)ns]

__L_
[- 2 ]Y -1
Pt = (Pe)ns LF_-J

2gy

It might
will

inAt any section X between

usually

oc-

region

of operation,

case

of overexpansion

sive

nozzle

in many

exists

divergence

cases

on the

tion

i.e.,

all

stations

(see

Following
relations
nozzle:
Theoretical

are

that
fig.

nozzle

all

that

no

is

significant
gas

flow

and

(1-23)

Thus,

nozzle
separa-

"filled"

through

+Y__t.L
-1 y-_

y-1

exces-

chosen.

at

1-Sb).

some

for an ideal

exit

the

are

to base

assumption

[
IF-

an extreme

or unless

angles

it is correct

calculations
occurs;

unless

nozzle inlet and

nozzle exit:

curs further
downstream.
In fact,
it rarely
occurs
at all in conventional
rocket
nozzles
within
their
design

(1-22)

vt=V_--_R(Tc)ns

be

divergence

separation

(1-21)

low-

Actually,

nozzle

throat:

In

walls.

expansion.

( po

a bound-

of separation

friction,

At the

pressure

forcing

point

nozzle.

exist.

ambient

from

of optimum

by
and

gases

away

(1-20)

b, pressure

to friction,

layer,

for a distance,

center

F;

length

De Laval

due

boundary

be expected
at the

where,

of slow-moving

this

nozzle

on thrust

overexpanded

walls,

layer

incorrect

separation

distribution

the

of

2 _Y-IF!Pc)ns]Y

,/

AXiS

Effect

: PQ)

(b)

Figure

ratio:

RE-

o_ETo_eTSEOAR,T
0_

*DEAL

NOZZLE

expansion

NO

PRESSURE

_@

OISTNCE

WAVES

SUBSON*C

_/CO_ERY,

\\

RECOVERY

SHOC_

FURTHER

useful

At any

section

nozzle

throat:

X between

nozzle

inlet

and

the

a rocket

velocity:

.y_=2_3__E22
y q2(y-_)

(1-24)

At
2

(Pc)ns_

DESIGN

At

any

the

section

nozzle

X between

the

OF

LIQUID

nozzle

throat

PROPELLANT

and

divergent

exit:

in

Useful
heat

J2gy
_ Y -1R(Tc)ns

values

ratio

Sample

y+

Variations

of

number

with

The

-_

s/'

r
)'-P

(-,
,c),s

area

nozzle

are

p.._ _

of

engine:

thrust

l_tc

11(1.26
)

in

ratio
the

and

of

table

the

specific

1-2.

psia;

the

nozzle

also

heat

ratio,

values

The

flow
(In

for

Mi

weight,

y=

flow

: O;

Mi = 0.4.

design

temperature,

_ = 12.

Minj

rate,
pressure,

molecular

assumed:

plane,
inlet,

total
gas

ratio,

thrust

flow

stagnation

chamber

specific

the

rocket

propellant

product

area
are

injecting

chamber

1.20;

Mach
Mach

practice,
range

noz-

following
number
number

at

thrust
from

0.15

to

o.45.)

and

MACH
0.2

0.1

expansion

for

propellant

nozzle

R;
gas

given

liquid

chamber

= 1000

at

are

ideal

ib/sec;

conditions

Mach

convergent

data

an

= 360.7

(Pc)ns

(1-27)

) Y

pressure
ratio

in

(1-2)

following

chamber

zle

isentropic
the

Laval

functions

listed

Calculation

_{ = _2.67;

./ F

of

y are

(Tc)ns=6540

: Ii T

a De

I-6.

(1-25)

p, 5)'?";

Vx

of

figure

[ 2 _y-1/(,.___c)_s,
ky+l]
p_

Vx=

ENGINES

sections

shown
1

Ax

ROCKET

NUMBER

Mx
0.5

IOO

5o

2o

o
rr

','

e
5

CONVERGING
--_)-, yy.

1.40
1.10

,#1.

NUMBER
VS
AREA RATIO

_;t
r-.

MACH
i,/

PRESSURE RATIO

ill
20

50

PRESSURE
Figure

1-6.-Variations

of

isentropic
diverging

pressure
sections

ratio

._

/
IOO

200

RATIO(Pc)nr,/Pa
and
of

De

Mach
Laval

number
nozzle.

with

area

ratio

in

converging

and

INTRODUCTION

TABLE

1-2.-Useful

Values

Speci[ic

TO LIQUID

o[ Functions

Heat

Ratio

0.0909
.1304
.1667
.1736
.1803
.1870
.1936
.2000
2064
.2126
.2188
.2248
.2308
.2481
.2647
2857
.3333
,3750

o[ the

ROCKET ENGINES

From

equation

2 _(y+l}

0.5847
.5744
.5645
.5626
.5607
.5588
.5569
.5549
.5532
.5513
5494
.5475
.5457
.5405
.5352
.5283
.5120
.4968

(y-O

Pt = (Pc)ns

0.6590
.6848

From

.7104
.7155

Ax/At

: 1000

figure

Determine

the

.7205
.7257
7307
.7356
From

figure

,7558
.7608
.7757
.7906
.8102

Pe

(b)

.8586
.9062

flow

temperatures:

flow

specific

Tinj,

volumes:

d(.d) flow

velocities:

numbers:

Mx,

Ax,

a(_ flow

Px at Ax/At

Flow

Since

Tt,

Tx,

Vi,

Vt,

Vinj,
vi,

Me;

Ti,
vt,

(f) flow

static

: 4, and

Vx, re;
areas:

Ac,

(1-25)

psia

at

1 _ 1000
23 =43.5

1-6

or equation

(Pc)ns

1000

- -101.5

101.5

psia

(1-20):

= 9.85

psia

temperatures:

(Tc)in

j = (Tc)ns

= (Tc)inj

= constant

= (Tc)ns

and

Minj = 0

= 6540 c R

By definition:

(_
c(c(c(c(_

Vx,
flow

= 564

pres-

Pc;
Te;

or equation

Px=(Pc)nsX23

.7408
.7457
.7508

following:

Pin j, Pi, Pt,

1-6

0.564

= 4

Tinj

sures:

(1-21):

4/(

1.10 26.61
1.15 22.21
1.20 1965
1.21
19.26
1.22
18,89
1.23
18,55
1.24
18.23
1.25
17.94
1.26
17.66
127
17.40
1.28
17.15
1.29 16.92
1.30 16.70
.33 16.10
.36 15.59
1.40 15.01
.50 13.89
1.60 113.10

PROPELLANT

Ve;

(Tc)ns

Mach

Ti: + ;(_1)M,2]

Ai,

At,

Ae.

6540
1 +0.1

x 0.16

6540
1.016

= 6440 F

Solution
(a)

Flow

From

static

From

pressures:

equation

equation

(1-13):

(1-14):
Y
Tt

(pc)inj=(Pc)ns(1

+ yMi2)/

t 1 +-_

c)ns

=6540x0-909=5945R

Mi 2) }'-1
y-I

= 1000 x (1 + 0.16 1.20) _ 1.192 = 1082 psia

o. o)

Tx=(

Tc

)ns-PL(p-_-_
_I
-

1
= 6540 I._

= 38800 R

: 6540 x 2-_:

3025

y-i
Since,

by

assumption,

Minj = 0
e = (Tc)ns

Pe
[(p-p_n s ]

(c)

specific

T
Pinj = (Pc)inj
From

Pi = Pinj/(1

equation

= 1082

psia

(1-15)

+ yMi 2) = 1+0.161.201082

1082
1._

= 909

psia

Flow

R = 1544

volumes:

__ 1544
22.67

= 68

10

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

From equation

(1-9):

RTinj

Mx = Vx _ 8360_ 2.59
ax 3226

686540
= 2.846
144 x 10S2

cu ft/lb

ae -- \ gy---_e = \'32.2 ), 1.2 68 x 3025 = 2820 ft,/sec

Vinj

- 144

Vi

RTi _68 x 6440=3.34


- 144 Pi 144 909

Vt

RTt
-144p_

Vx

RTx
68 x 3880
= 144px "= 144x43.5
- 42.1 cu ft/lb

Ai= 144 WtcVi _ 144 360.7 3.34 = 105.4


vi
1646
Ac:Ai:105.4

Ve

RTx
68 x 3025
=144px=144x9.85-145.1

Pinj

68 x 5945
144564

ve 9620
Me = _-_e= 2--820= 3.43

cu ft/lb

(f) Flow areas:


From equation (1-11):

t.97 cu ft/lb

in 2

cu ft/lb
At = 144WtcVt
vt

(d) Flow velocities:


Since the sonic velocity

a i = \,_ y RTi
An -

vi=Miai=O.4

32.2x

l.2x68x6440=O.4

x 4110
= 1646 ft/sec

vt = M_at = 1 x 32.2 x 1.2 x 68 x 5945 = 3958


From equation

2gy R(Tc)n

_ 144 x 360.7 x 4.97.= 65.4


3958

144 WtcVx

144 x 360.7 x 42.1

vx

8360

in 2

= 261.8 in 2

or

ft/sec

Ax=4At=261.8

in 2

(1-26):
Ae-

vx:

in 2

_(

Px

144WtcVe
Ve

144 x 360.7 x145.1=


9670

782 in 2

or

\(Pc)ns/J
Ae= 12xAt=782

in2

= J6540x 64.4x 6 68 x [I- 0.593]


= \/64.4 6 x 68 x 0.407x 6540
1.3 PERFORMANCE
PARAMETERS
LIQUID PROPELLANT
ROCKET

= 8360 ft/sec
From equation(I-18):

= \/64.4

x 6 x 68 x 6540 x 0.543 = 9760 ft/sec

The performance of a rocket engine is expressed by a quantitycommonly called "specific


impulse,"Is. Ifimpulse impartedto the vehicle
and propellantweight consumption were measured during a given time interval,Is would have
the dimension ib-sec/Ib. In practice,thrustis
usuallymeasured, in conjunctionwith propellant
weight flow-ratemeasurements. This yieldsthe
same dimension: ]b/(Ib/sec).Is may thus be
expressed as

(e) Flow Mach numbers:


Since
ax = vg),_--RTx= \32.2

x 1.2 x 68 x 3880 = 3226 ft/sec

OF A
ENGINE

Is = F/'ff
Since

weight

is the force

(1-28)
exerted

by a mass

INTRODUCTION TO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

on its rigid support under the influence


of gravitation (by convention
at sea level on Earth), it has
become accepted
practice
to measure Is in "seconds," by canceling
out the terms for the forces.
Obviously,
the expression
does not denote a
time, but rather a magnitude
akin to efficiency.
is directly contributes
to the final velozity
of
the vehicle at burnout and thus has a pronounced
effect on range or size of payload,
or both. This
will be shown further below in connection
with
equation

would

result.

fed from one or all of a given vehicle's


propellant tanks.
If they are properly considered,
the
user, in this case the vehicle builder, will obtain
the correct value for his own optimization
studies, which include propellant
tank sizes, payload
weight, and range, among other parameters.
In many instances,
statement
of the specific
impulse (ls)tc for the thrust chamber only may be
desirable,
such as during the component
development period of this subassembly.
Since, in that
case, those propellant
demands which are inadequately or not at all contributing
to the generation of thrust are not included,
the specific
impulse stated will be higher than for a complete
system, by 1 to 2 percent,
as a rule. The specific impulse thus stated would be too high for
the vehicle builder,
who must consider the supply of propellants
to the auxiliary
devices
mentioned above as well.
If, due to improper identification of Is, a thrust chamber value were used
as an engine value, the consequences
would be
serious.
This becomes
clear, if one realizes
that when relying on a better-than-actual
value,
propellant
tank sizes would be designed
too
small, resulting
in premature
propellant
depletion.
This would eliminate
the last seconds of
required burning time, when the vehicle mass
being accelerated
is near empty weight and
acceleration,
therefore,
is near maximum.
A
substantial
loss of range for a given payload

The situation

would

be further

complicated
by the fact that it is nearly impossible to improve the specific
impulse once an engine and thrust chamber have been designed,
for
a given propellant
combination.
Another important performance
parameter
is
the propellant
mass fraction
vehicle,
of which the engine
The propellant
mass fraction

(1-30).

It is important to state whether a specific


impulse quoted refers to the thrust chamber assembly only (ls)tc, or to the overall engine system
(Is)onOften, the distinction
may not be selfevident.
It is important,
therefore,
to state
accurately
to what system the quoted specific
impulse refers.
For instance,
in a turbopump fed
system, overall engine specific
impulse may include turbine power requirements,
vernier, and
attitude control devices.
All of these may be

11

Rp-

Rp of the complete
system is a part.
is defined as

Usable propellant
mass
Initial rocket mass

(1-29)

where the initial rocket mass is equal to the sum


of the masses of the engine system at burnout,
the structure
and guidance
system, the payload,
and the propellant.
The significance
of the propellant mass fraction can be illustrated
by the
basic equation
for the rocket burnout velocity
Vbo (ft/sec)
Vbo=Cvc"

1
In 1-Rp

g(ls)oa

(1-30)

where the coefficient


Cvc corrects
for the effects
of aerodynamic
and gravitational
forces.
It is
composed of several
parameters
which vary with
type of trajectory
and with elapsed
time during
flight.
Although they are of no concern here,
they are of great importance
to the vehicle
builder.
Also, they cannot be neglected
for
rigorous engine design analyses
which must include trajectory
information.
Thrust

Chamber Specific

Impulse

(ls)tc

The overall performance


of the liquid propellant thrust chamber is a direct function of the
propellant
combination,
the combustion
efficiency of propellants
in the chamber,
and the
product gas expansion
performance
in the nozzle. The expression
for (Is)tc may be obtained
in several ways:
From equation

1-28:

(1-31)

Combine

equations

1-31 and 1-7:


(/s)tc

(1-31a)
g

12

DESIGN OF LIQUID

The

effective

defined

exhaust

as

eters,

the

velocity

c may

of two

convenient

product

c* and

PROPELLANT

be further

ROCKET ENGINES

This

param-

Ct

shows

that

properties

form

of the

combustion

exit

combustion

of the

zle
c=c*C!

where

the

second

characteristic

(commonly

parameter

velocity

pronounced

primarily

combustion

used

gas

zle.

The

the

equations

1-31a

and

the

heat

temperature

While

I s and

missile

Rp

are

or space

are

of great

and

thrust

and

=-

early

chamber

nozzle.

Combining

1-31b:

importance
both

to the

c* and

to the

and

for theoretical Cf may

Cf

engine

the

quantity

level

of the

injector

and

fined

by the

This

form

mented
as

developer.

velocity

at the

c* reflects

the

effective

propellants

and

the

combustion

chamber.

following

CI:

shows

by the

throat,

compared

with

erated

if the

throat

area

only.

1-18,

1-19,

and

lowing

(1-33)

Cf measures

expansion
the

force

chamber

the

which

pressure
the

may

quality

It may

performance

in a given

indicating

how

pellant

must

nozzle

stagnation

propellant
tion

2 I y-'

higher
equation
theoretical
form:

a combustion
efficiency

value

of c*.

1-19

and

the

1-32,

be rewritten

required

given

process
gives

by

of provalue

in the

As
sure
try

will

for

following

is that

gas

property

the

nozzle

(1-3_)
)'+ 1

Pe - Pal

C_.
cannot

erties,

CI is

nozzle

throat

area

stagnation

been

the

in indus-

practice

literature.

from

Briefly,
the

the

true

exit,

a more

logical
the

results.
the

heat

at

value
value

is mathe-

measured

Likewise,

specific

i.e.,

true

(Pc)ns

value

static
pressure
at the injector,
of this calculated
value
has

thus

the

theoretical

chamber

operation

be measured.

test

pres(1-32)

In actual

and

expan-

in equations

reflects

by the

of

(Pc)ns,

used

and gives

converted

a function

pressure

the

at combustion
inlet,

of (Pc)ns

fied

has
of the

(Pc)ns

to c* and

the gas
accuracy

that

the

been

This

in most

matically
c* = \/gyR(Tc)ns

fol-

y, chamber
Pc, and

has

(1-33).
and

shows

ratio

be noted,

(Pc)ns

reason

lYtc with
equation

1-33a

heat

ambient
pressure
sion ratio _.

and

a corresponding
the

specific

of
condi-

of higher

By substituting

in equation

c* may

the

A lower

l_ under

Equation

chamber
second

to maintain

pressure.

consumption

and

per

in the

+'

combustion

combustion
pounds

be burned

indicates

energy

many

1-6,

for theoretical

be rewritten

(1-32)

c* measures

the

of

be de-

expression:

that

be gen-

over

form:

g'tc
shows

would

equation

aug-

nozzle

equations

(Pc)nsA_

form

the

acted

By combining
1-33,

force

through

energy

design

c* =

This

be

At (Pc)n s

that

gas

Ct at any altitude

sonic

noz-

importance

with

y, gas

equations 1-31, 1-31c, and

1-32, the expression


written as:

Characteristic Velocity c*
In a system

ratio

Cf

(1-31C)

builder,

designer

at the

The quantity Cf reflects the product gas ex-

noz-

of ultimate

vehicle

at the

i.e.,

(Tc)ns.

c*Cf
(Is)tc

gas

pansion properties and design quality of the

to measure

through

chamber,

Coefficient

of the

product

specific

R, and

Thrust

coeHicient

used

performance

per
is a

namely,

constant

propellant

thrust

parameter

expansion

Combine

c* in feet
"cee-star')

to rate

performance.

Ct is a dimensionless
the

(1-31b)

inlet;

c* is a function

the
ratio

of

Pinj.
The
to be verigas

prop-

y which

INTRODUCTIONTO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

additionally
changes
along the chamber axis,
affect the true values of c* and Cf. This will
have to be verified by actual test results.
To understand
better the nature of Cf and the
design parameters
which influence
it, let us first
rearrange
equation (1-33):
F =(Pc)ns"

At" CI

(1-34)

The formula expresses


that the thrust generated by a thrust chamber (the effect) is produced
by pressure
(the cause) as a function of the
physical
properties
of the chamber itself.
The
relationships
and effects of the principal
design
parameters
become clearer if we proceed in steps
as follows:
Assume we wish to generate
a certain thrust F.
Our chamber is a straight
cylinder (fig. 1-7).
The pressure
in this chamber has a very small
effect on the cylindrical
wall (the forces normal
to the chamber axis will cancel each other), except for effects of friction, which we will neglect.
There is no part of the chamber for the
pressure
to act upon at the exit.
The only chamber area upon which the pressure
can act is the
injector plate.
Since, for the cylindrical
chamber, the injector
area Ai is equal to At, we can
write:
Fcyl : Pinj "At
For the reasons
include (Pc)ns:

explained

above,

Fcyl = (Pc)ns
Since

(Pc)ns

is smaller

(1-35)
we rewrite

"At" C[ 1

to

(1-36)

than Pinj (fig.

1-4), the

I
INJECTOR -----F_

--Pa

Ain j =A

J
A = A i

Figure

i-7

=A t

= Ae

13

coefficient
CfL is introduced
to correct for this
fact.
For instance,
if the ratio (Pc)ns/Plnj
was
found to be 0.8 from figure 1-4, CII would have
to be 1.25 to offset the introduction
of (Pc)ns.
As will be seen, the use of a thrust coefficient
of 1.25, for instance,
in a straight
cylinder
thrust chamber for which (Pc)ns/Pinj
is 0.8, is
merely part of a mathematical
rearrangement,
but
does not signify an increase
in thrust for a given
Pinj.

It is noted

that

the combustion

chamber

in-

cluding injector will have to produce the required


pressure
(Pc)ns with a flow rate, the magnitude
of which is determined
by c* and by the throat
area At. Transformation
of equation (1-32)
shows the relationship:

(Pc)ns =Wtc" c*. I-L-At'g

(1-37)

In actual practice,
the value of c* for a given
propellant
combination
and thrust chamber design
is arrived at tentatively
from existing
experience
and is subsequently
refined during development
testing.
Let us now redesign our cylindrical
thrust
chamber, as shown in figure 1-8. Maintaining
the same throat area At=Ae,
we enlarge the
combustion
chamber including
injector to a diameter somewhat larger than that of At. The flow
rate remains V/tc.
In the straight cylindrical
chamber (fig. 1-7),
the gas velocity
was sonic at the end of the
cylindrical
chamber portion, which coincided
with At and Ae. From earlier discussions
(see
sec. 1-2), we know that expansion
(acceleration)
is nonisentropic
in that case.
In the redesigned
chamber (fig. 1-8) by contrast,
gas velocities
are
still well below sonic velocity
at the end of the
cylindrical
portion.
Most of the acceleration
to
sonic velocity will now occur in the added, convergent nozzle.
Since we can make the assumption, which is essentially
correct, that the combustion process
is complete at the end of the
cylindrical
chamber portion, the subsequent
expansion
(acceleration)
in the convergent
nozzle is assumed to be isentropic;
i.e., to occur
without further total pressure
losses.
Since we
keep lYtc and At constant,
and assume that c*
remains unchanged,
the nozzle stagnation
pressure (Pc)ns, too, will retain the same value as in

]4

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

INJECTOR
go

Ainj =A

Ac=Ai

Ainj

"A

At=A+

At<A

A I >A

At =A e

Figure

1-9

Ai>A t
Figure

1-8

the case of the straight


cylindrical
chamber.
However, because of the reduced pressure
losses
in the combustion
chamber, the required total
pressure
at the injector end will definitely
be
lower.
The redesign,
then, has the favorable
result
that, for instance,
in pressurized
systems,
the
same propellant
flow rate can be sustained
with
lower tank pressures,
thus, slightly lighter tanks
can be used.
In turbopump-fed
systems,
required
turbopump horsepower
will decrease.
However,
the forces acting upon the thrust chamber, and
thus the developed
thrust, can be assumed
to
have remained unchanged,
since a lower pressure acts upon the larger injector,
and since
opposing forces are present at the converging
nozzle.
In short, it may be stated that our redesign
(fig. 1-8) results
in reduced demands on the propellant feed system for the same Wtc and the
same thrust level.
We now proceed to further redesign the chamber to include a divergent
nozzle section,
as in
figure 1-9. Up to the throat area, nothing
changes
over the preceding
configuration,
which
includes
a convergent
nozzle only. Since the
gas velocity
in the throat area is always sonic
(except for very low, subcritical
chamber pressures), the attachment
of the divergent nozzle
section,
likewise,
will have no effect on the
previously
described
gas processes
and the
pressures
upstream of the throat.
However, conditions downstream
from the throat are now
different.
With the cylindrical
with convergent
energy available

chamber,

and the chamber

nozzle,
the static pressure
at the throat Pt is dissipated

by

expansion
to atmospheric
pressure,
flowing
freely in all directions.
By attaching
a divergent nozzle,
we prevent the gases from dissipating at random, and further accelerate
the gases
in one preferred direction
only. Since this process takes place in the divergent
part of the
thrust chamber, the static pressures
of the expanding gases produce a force on the chamber,
as indicated
by the arrows in figure 1-9. The
expression
of the thrust for the complete thrust
chamber with convergent-divergent
nozzle can
now be written as:

Ftc

roAr

pdA

+ fAinj
,]A t

pdA

Ai pdA
*A t

pdA

(1-38)

$
The last expression
in the equation
the gain realized
from attaching
the
nozzle to the throat.
By combining
into a single coefficient
C[ (see eq.
arrive again at equation (1-34):

represents
divergent
all gains
1-33), we

F = (Pc)ns "At" Ct
In brief, it may be stated that the redesign
(fig. 1-9) results
in an increased
thrust level,
the same Wtc and the same feed
uration.

system

for

config-

Summary of the Influences


of Pa, e, y, R, and
(Pc)ns on Engine Performance
The Effect

of Pa

An ambient pressure
Pa reduces the vacuum
thrust F of an engine by the amount Pa "Ae. (See

INTRODUCTION TO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

eq. (1-6).)
C{ is similarly
affected by the amount
E. Pa/(Pc)ns,
as shown in equation
1-33a).
This
may be rewritten
as C{=(CDvac-e-Pal(pc)as.
The lower the ambient pressure,
the higher
thrust and performance.
Maximum values are obtained in vacuum.
The Effect

___

(Pc)NS

15

Pe>P=

of e
PO

Optimum thrust for a given ambient pressure


is obtained
when the nozzle expansion
area ratio
e=Ae/At
is such that Pe--Pa.
This may be seen
from figure 1-10. If the divergent
nozzle section
is extended
in the region where Pe > Pa, thrust
will increase.
Where Pe <Pa, however,
lengthening of the nozzle will decrease
thrust.
Hence it
would be beneficial
to design the nozzle to yield
Pe = Pa, to reach an optimum value for the thrust
coefficient.
The e for this condition
is called
optimum nozzle expansion
area ratio.
Unfortunately, because
of changing ambient pressure
during flight, no one single is optimum.
Optimization
studies are usually made to determine
the best compromise.
Such a study is not required (except for weight and size considerations) for rockets which start and stop at the
same ambient pressure,
such as upper stages,
where ambient pressure
is zero or near zero at
all times.
For the special
case of Pa = 0 (vacuum
conditions),
e would become infinity,
to satisfy
"ideal expansion."
Even for this case, however,
expansion
ratios over 25 contribute
little.
The
nozzle design is usually "cut" at this point,
mainly for weight considerations.
This leaves
a
small positive
pressure
at the exit which is unavailable
for final gas acceleration.
However, it
still contributes
as a positive
term Pe "Ae.
The Effect

of y

The specific
heat ratio is an indication
of the
energy storing capacity
of the gas molecule.
A
smaller value of y indicates
a higher energystoring capability,
and in turn gives higher engine performance.
As shown in equations
(1-32a)
and (1-33a), a smaller y will yield a higher value
for both, c* and C[. The influence
of the properties of the selected
propellants
and of the
combustion
products
is apparent.
The Effect

of R(R=

1544/_)

It can be seen from equation (1-32) that for


constant
(Tc)as, c* will increase
if the gas

OPTIM_
EXPANSION
I
=

UNDER
EXPANSION

(VARIABLE

Figure

OVER
EXPANSION

NOZZLE

LENGHT)

I-10

constant
R increases;
i.e., the gas molecular
weight decreases.
Thus, a higher value of R
will yield a higher engine performance.
The Effect

of (Pc)ns

The effective
chamber pressure
or nozzle
stagnation
pressure
(Pc)as appears
in equation
(1-33a) for Ct in the form of two pressure
ratios
Pe/(Pc)ns
and Pa/(Pc)ns.
As is evident from
equation (1-20), the ratio Pe/(Pc)ns
has a singular value, for a given E and y. (Pc)ns in equation
(1-33), therefore,
influences
C{ only through the
negative term -Pal(pc)as.
An increase
in (Pc)as
decreases
this negative
term and hence increases
C{. This effect is more pronounced
when Pa is high. Since the thrust is proportional
to both (Pc)as and Ct, we see now clearly how
an increase
in (Pc)ns in a given thrust chamber
will increase
the thrust.
(Pc)ns also has some
tion process.
Increasing

effect on the combus(Pc)as tends to in-

crease (Tc)ns and to reduce y and R. The overall result is usually an increase
in c*. However,
these effects are slight,
especially
at (Pc)as
above 300 psi.

Correction Factors and Magnitudes


Performance Parameters

of Engine

The actual performance


of a liquid propellant
rocket engine differs from that of an ideal one
because of friction effects,
heat transfer,
nonperfect gases,
nonaxial flow, nonuniformity
of
working substance
and of flow distribution,
and

16

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

shifting gas composition.


The latter refers to
the fact that the gas properties
(y, _, R) are not
truly constant
along the nozzle axis, as the
isentropic
treatment
of the processes
assumes,
Therefore,
correction
factors have to be applied
to the performance
parameters
which are derived
from theoretical
assumptions.
Following
are
some important correction
factors:

ROCKET

TABLE
Gas

temperature,

Gas
Gas

factor

for thrust

Actual thrust
coefficient
_?t= Ideal thrust
coefficient
The values

for _f range

and thrust

coefficient

_ Actual thrust
Ideal thrust

from 0.92

Specific

heat

Nozzle
Nozzle

factor

coefficient,

_v*The values
Correction

Ideal

exhaust

velocity

Actual
_?w= Ideal

(1-40)

- Ideal specific
impulse
from 0.85 to 0.98.
velocity

characteristic

velocity

characteristic

for _?v* range


factor

(1-41)

velocity

from 0.87 to 1.03.

for propella_t
propellant
propellant

for ?w range

...........

to 1.66

1.3 to 2.0

Specific

150 to 480

impulse,

Is ..............

to 8000 R/see
to 12000 ft/sec
sec

Sample

mass

mass
mass

flow rate

flow rate
flow rate

vacuum or altitude
thrust coeffiplotted as functions
of nozzle exratio e and gas specific
heat ratio y
figure 1-11.

Calculation

(1-3)

a thrust

chamber

(d) actual c*, if c* correction


factor ?v*= 0.97;
(e._)actual Cr at sea level and in space, if sea
level Ct correction
factor: W= 0.983; (f) actual
(ls)tc at sea level and in space;
(g)
m (Is)tc correction factor at sea level; (h) thrust at sea
level and in space;
(i._.)actual At and Ae.
Solution
(a) From equation

(1-32a):

(1-42)

from 0.98 to 1.15.

correction

factors

for the same ideal

liquid propellant
rocket engine as given in sample calculation
(1-2), in which Wtc = 360.71b/sec;
(Pc)ns = 1000 psia; (Tc)ns =6540 R; 111_= 22.67;
y= 1.20; e= 12.
Determine the following:
(a) Theoretical
c*;
(b) theoretical
Cf at sea level and in space;
(c.) theoretical
(ls)tc at sea level and in space;

c* :- v'gyR(Tc)ns
[
Y+_"

,tI{
The relation between
expressed
as:

1.13

3.5 to 100
1.3 to 6
3000
4000

Theoretical
The values

y . ...........
area ratio, e .....
area ratio, _c ..
Ct

psia

51.5 to 772
0 to 4.5

Characteristic
velomty,
e* .......
Effective
exhaust
velocity,
c ......

Values of the
cient (Ct)vac
pansion area
are shown in

to 1.00.

for characteristic

Actual

ratio,

expansion
contraction

10 to 2500
2 to 30

(1-39)

Actual specific
impulse

for _?vrange

Correction

..

constant,
R ..................
flow Math number,
M ..........

Assume
Actual effective
exhaust velocity

The values

4000 R to 7000 o R

pressure
(pc)ns
E .............

fvaeuum)

Correction
factor for effective
and specific
impulse

_?v- Ideal effective


exhaust velocity

I-3

T ...............

Nozzle
stagnation
Molecular
weight,

Thrust

Correction

ENGINES

2 \k-_

may be

yv = _v*'W

(1-43)

_v = 1/rlw

(1-44)

_/3 2.2 x 1.2 x _1544 x 6540


0.7104
= 5830 ft/sec

Actual ranges of liquid propellant


rocket
parameters
are listed in table 1-3.

engine
(b) From equation

(1-33a):

INTRODUCTION

TO LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

17

ENGINES

2.06

2.00

= LIO"

1.94
1.88
_1.82
i-. I.76
z
tJ.i
G 1.70
LI_

1.64

1.58
n,,,
p-_

1.52

hi
a
F-_

1.46

,_ 1.4o
1.54
1.28

1.22
I

NOZZLE
Figure

1-11.-Altitude

thrust

_/ 2y
y__
z
Theoretical

coefficient

20

as function

+__!I

Ct:

8 9 I0

of area

ratio

40

and

specific

Theoretical
calculation

sea

level

Ct=2.247

Pa = 14.7

T-

Ct=

psia:

ratio.

14 7
_
= 1.5918+0.1764

1.5918+12

= 1.7682

psia:
(c)

Theoretical

heat

(1-2)
Pe = 9.85

At

SO I00

In space:

+e(pc)ns

sample

60

= 1.5918

Pe

Pe - Pa

From

50

= 1.65 - 0.0582

Y-__L

_,0

EXPANSION AREA RATIO,( =As/At

From

equation

(1-31):
c* C!

Theoretical

Is -g

+12

9.85

1000
4.85

= 2.247

x _/1 - 0.4625

= 2.247

x 0.734-

0.0582

- 14.7
At

sea

level:

x 12

1000

Theoretical

(Is)to

In space:

-- 5830

1.5918:
32.2

288.4

lb sec/lb

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

18

Theoretical

5830 1.7682 = 319.6 lb sec/'lb


32.2

(ls)tc-

Thrust

F in space

: lt'tc (Is)to

in space

= 360.7 306 = 108 500 lb


(d) From equation
Actual

(1-41):

(i) From equation

c* =_Tv*"theoretical

c*
F
At =Cf.(Pc)n

= 0.97 x 5830= 5650 ft/sec


(e)

From equation
Actual

Cr= W" theoretical

Cf=0.983

Cf

1.4 LIQUID

1.5918 = 1.566

In space:

Actual

14.7
C[= 1.566 + 12 x -1000
= 1 566 + 0.1764

= 1.7424

(f) At sea level:

Actual

(/s)tc

99200
1.566x1000

Ae=e'At=1263.4=760.8

(1-39):

At sea level:
Actual

(1-33):

5650 x 1.566
-275
32.2

lb sec/lb

ROCKET

-63.4

in 2

in 2

PROPELLANTS

The term "liquidpropellant"is used to defineboth liquidoxidizers(liquidoxygen, liquid


fluorine,
nitricacid, etc.)and liquidfuels (RP-1,
alcohol,liquidhydrogen,etc.). In some cases
additivesare used (water,ferricchloride,etc.).
The propellantsfurnishthe energy and the working substance forthe rocketengines. The
selectionof the propellantsis one of the most
importantsteps in the design of an engine. It
greatlyaffectsoverallengine system performance as well as the design criteria
foreach
engine component. The propellantselectionin
turnis influencedby price,supply,handling,and
storageconsiderations.

In space:
Monopropellants
Actual

(ls)tc-

5650 x 1.7424
=306
32.2

(g) From equation


(Is)tc

correction

factor

_v at sea level

lb sec/lb

(1-40):
Actual

(ls)tc

at sealevel

Theoretical
(/s)tc
sea level

at

275
= 288.----_-0.954
Or from equation

(1-43):

_Tv= _?v*" W =0.97 0983 = 0.954


(h) From equation
Thrust

(1-31):

F at sea level = Wtc (ls)tc

at sea level

= 360.7 275 = 99 200 lb

Liquid monopropellants
may be either a mixture of oxidizer and combustible
matter, or a
single compound which can be decomposed
with
attendant
heat release
and gasification.
A
rocket monopropellant
must be stable in a natural
or controlled
environment,
yet should produce hot
combustion
or decomposition
gases when pressurized, heated,
or fed through a catalyst.
A
liquid monopropellant
engine system usually
does have the advantage
of simplicity
of tankage, feed plumbing,
flow control, and injection.
Unfortunately,
most of the practical
monopropellants, such as hydrogen peroxide (H202),
have a
relatively
low performance.
Thus, they are
mainly used as secondary
power sources
in
rocket engine systems,
such as for turbopump
gas generators
and auxiliary
power drives, and
for attitude
and roll control jets.
Certain highperformance
monopropellants,
such as methyl
nitrate (CH3NOs), are rather unstable
and are

INTRODUCTION TO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

considered
unsafe for rocket applications.
However, some monopropellants
promising relatively
high-performance
and safer operational
characteristics
have been under development
recently.
If successful,
these may effect wider application
of liquid monopropellant
engines.

Bipropellants
In a liquid bipropellant
system, two different
propellants
are used, usually an oxidizer
and a
fuel. Separate
tanks hold oxidizer and fuel
which are not mixed until they reach the combustion chamber.
Present-day
liquid propellant
rocket engines use bipropellants
almost exclusively because they offer higher performance,
combined with safer operation.
The combustion
of many bipropellant
combinations
is initiated
by ignition devices
such
as: (a) chemical
pyrotechnic
igniters,
_ electric spark plugs, (_ injection
of a spontaneously
ignitable
liquid fuel or oxidizer ("pyrophoric
fluid") ahead of the propellant
proper, (d) a small
combustor
wherein ignition is started by devices
(a) or (b), in turn starting
the main chamber by
the hot gas produced.
Other bipropellant
combinations
ignite spontaneously
upon mixing.
Those combinations
are
defined as hypergolics
and permit greatly simplified ignition,
but pose certain hazards.
For
instance,
accidental
mixing of the fuel and oxidizer due to tank and other hardware failures
could cause a violent explosion.
These hazards
must be considered
when designing
an engine
system using hypergolic
propellants.

19

under development
which should greatly reduce
these losses.
Adequate
venting systems
are
needed for the developed
gases.
Storage and
handling equipment
and their components
are
extremely
sensitive
to atmospheric
or other
moisture;
even minute quantities
may cause a
jamming of, for instance,
a valve.
Likewise,
the
design criteria,
including
materials
selection
for
engine systems
using cryogenic
propellants,
must consider the very low temperatures
involved.
The mechanical
design of engine components for cryogenic
propellant
applications
will be discussed
in subsequent
chapters.

StorableLiquid Propellants
In contrastto the cryogenic propellants,certainother liquidpropellantsare stable over a
reasonable range of temperatureand pressure,
and are sufficiently
nonreactivewith constructionmaterialsto permit storage in closed containersforperiods of a year or more. These
propellantsare defined as storables. Storable
liquidpropellantspermit almost instantreadiness
of the rocket engine and may result in greater
reliability
due to the absence
of extremely
low
temperatures
and the need to dispose of boiloff
vapors.
Their applic_ttion
to military vehicles
as well as to the upper stages of space vehicles
has increased
significantly
during recent years.
The mechanical
design of storable
liquid engine
components
will be further discussed
in subsequent chapters.

Additives for Liquid Rocket Propellants


Cryogenic

Propellants

Some liquid propellants


are liquefied
gases
with a very low boiling point (-230 F to -430F)
at ambient pressure
and a low critical temperature (10 F to -400 F). These propellants
are
defined as cryogenics.
The most common cryogenic propellants
for rocket applications
are
liquid oxygen (02), liquid hydrogen (H2), liquid
fluorine (F 2), and oxygen difluoride
(OF 2), or
mixtures of some of them. Cryogenic
propellants
pose storage and handling problems.
Elaborate
insulation
must be provided in order to minimize
losses due to boiloff, the complexity
depending
on storage period and type of cryogenic.
Recently, novel insulating
techniques
have been

Sometimes, additivesare mixed intoliquid


propellants
for one of the following reasons:
(a)
to improve cooling characteristics;
(b_) to depress freezing point; (c_) to reduce corrosive
effects;
(d._)to facilitate
ignition;
and (.e.) to
stabilize
combustion.

Optimum Mixture

Ratio

A certain ratio of oxidizer weight to fuel


weight in a bipropellant
combustion
chamber will
usually yield a maximum performance
value.
This is defined as the optimum mixture ratio. As
a rule, the optimum mixture ratio is richer in fuel
than the stoichiometric
mixture ratio, at which

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

2O

theoretically
all the fuel is completely
oxidized
and the flame temperature
is at a maximum. This
is because
a gas wt_ich is slightly richer in fuel
tends to have a lower molecular
weight.
This
results
in a higher overall engine systems
performance.
The optimum mixture ratio of some
propellant
combinations
shifts slightly with
changes in chamber pressure.
Also, in actual
application
the mixture ratio may be shifted away
from the optimum value for one of the following
reasons:
(a) lower chamber temperature
to stay
within the temperature
limitations
of chamber
construction
material;
(.b.) required coolant flow;
(c) improved combustion
stability.

Density

Impulse

In addition to the overall system-oriented


specific
impulse which we thoroughly discussed
in paragraph
1-3, a quantity called "density impulse" is an important propellant
performance
parameter.
It is the expression
for the total
impulse delivered
per unit volume of the propellant. It is defined as:
Density

impulse

= Is d (sec)

(1-45)

wherein
d

:bulk density or propellant


spec. weight
(rw -1)
rw 1
do+dr

rw = (oxidizer/fuel)
d o : bulk density
di= bulk density

The Selection

combination,

(1-46)

weight mixture ratio


of the oxidizer,
spec. weight
of the fuel, spec. weight

of Liquid

Rocket

Propellants

When selecting
a propellant
or propellant
combination
for a specific
application,
it is well
to realize that most propellants,
in addition to
their advantages,
may have certain disadvantages.
Thus, propellant
selection
usually includes some compromises.
The more important
and desirable
propellant
features
are listed
below.
Order of importance
may vary as a function of application.
(1) High energy release
per unit of propellant
mass, combined with low molecular
weight of the combustion
or decomposi-

tion gases,
for high specific
impulse.
(2) Ease of ignition.
(3) Stable combustion.
(4) High density or high density impulse to
minimize the size and weight of propellant tanks and feed system.
(5) Ability to serve as an effective
coolant
for the thrust chamber (optimum combination of high specific
heat, high
thermal conductivity
and high critical
temperature).
(6) Reasonably
low vapor pressure
at 160 F
(a frequent specification
value) for low
tank weight and low net positive
pump
suction head requirement.
(7) Low freezing point (preferably
less than
-65 F') to facilitate
engine operation
at
low temperature.
(8) Absence of corrosive
effects;
compatibility with engine construction
materials.
(9) For storables:
good storability
as assisted by a high boiling point (preferably above 160 F), by items 6, 7, 8
and by the resistance
to deterioration
during storage.
(10) Low viscosity
(preferably
less than 10 cp
down to -65'= F) to minimize pressure
drops through feed system and injector.
(11) High thermal and shock stability
to minimize explosion
and fire hazard.
(12) Low toxicity of raw propellants,
their
fumes, and their combustion
products.
(13) Low cost.
(14) Availability.

Liquid Rocket Propellant


Physical
Properties

Performance

and

Detailed
methods to calculate
the performance
for any given liquid propellant
or propellant
combination can be found in the standard combustion
engineering
or rocket propellant
textbooks.
For
the theoretical
calculations,
it is generally
assumed that the ideal conditions
exist as described in section
1.2 (Gas Flow Processes)
of
this chapter.
The prime objective
of propellantperformance
calculations
is to derive the quantities
flame
mean
heat

c*, Ct, and Is through evaluation


of the
or chamber temperature
(Tc)ns;
of the gas
molecular
weight _Ii; and of the specific
ratio y for a given (Pc)ns, Pe and Pa. The

21

INTRODUCTIONTO LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

chamber temperature
can be calculated
from the
heat of the chemical
reaction
of the propellants
and from the specific
heat of the gases.
In
practice
it has been found that actual test results are usually 5 to 12 percent lower than the
theoretical
values obtained from calculations.
In addition to the assumption
of certain idealized gas conditions,
the performance
equations
discussed
assumed and employed certain singular
values for the most important gas properties:
y, _, R, (Tc)ns.
For basic design information
requiring greater accuracy,
more rigorous calculations frequently
employing electronic
computers are usually conducted
by specialists
in the
field.
These consider that the gas properties
are
not necessarily
constant
along the path of flow.
Two basic approaches
can be taken:
Calculations based on the assumption
of unchanging
or
"frozen"
gas composition
along the nozzle axis,
or based on the assumption
of shifting composition.
The applicable
literature
frequently
uses
the term "equilibrium"
instead of "composition."
In calculations
based on frozen composition,
it is assumed that no further chemical
reactions
take place in the gases after leaving the combustion chamber and entering the nozzle, and
that the combustion
products
at Ae are in the
same relative
proportion
as they were at Ai. The
remaining
principal
variables
then are pressure
and temperature
at the various stations.
Assuming different initial sets of mixture ratios, chamber pressures,
and gas compositions,
a typical
set of calculations,
probably involving
successive approximations,
may be conducted
to determine the optimum values of, for instance
mixture
ratio, chamber length, expansion
area ratio, and
nozzle contour, for a given propellant
combination and vehicle trajectory.
Calculations
based on shifting composition
take into account additional
variations,
mainly
those of gas composition,
as they result from,
for instance,
incomplete
combustion,
dissociation, and reassociation.
These calculations
are
an attempt to consider
more nearly the true
physical
processes.
Due to their extreme complexity and unpredictability,
however, the results
are frequently
no more reliable
predictions
of
test results
than those obtained
from calculations assuming
frozen composition.
Thus, it is probably a matter of preference
which approach
should be taken.
It is noted

that

the theoreticaldata based on a shiftingcompositionusually give values several percenthigher


than those based on a frozen one. Therefore, in
presentingperformance data, the assumption of
the type of composition assumed must be specified. As a rule,the thrustchamber designer will
be supplied with the basic parameters by departments specializingin thisfield. We need not,
therefore,
concern ourselves furtherwith this
matter.
Performance and physicalpropertiesofnumerous importantliquidmonopropellantsand bipropellantsare given in tables 1-4 through 1-10.

1.5 THE BASIC


PROPELLANT

ELEMENTS
ROCKET

OF A LIQUID
ENGINE SYSTEM

A vehicle system has occasionallybeen defined as a purposefulconglomerationof subsystems. One of these is the engine system. The
definition
of the scope of the various vehicle
subsystems has not always been uniform and
probably,by necessity,never willbe. For instance, forvehicle systems in which the propellanttanks simultaneouslyserve as the vehicle
airframe,itmay be a matter of opinion whether
they are part of the structure
or of the engine
system.
The decision
to which subsystem
they
belong may well depend on the fact whether the
tanks will be supplied by the engine manufacturer, or by a separate
contractor.
Similarly,
some, notably the engine system supplier,
may
consider the guidance
system a part of the payload, while the vehicle user will hold that anything without which the vehicle cannot fly
reliably and accurately
to its destination
is not
payload.
Whatever the definitions
may be, it is
important that they are used uniformly
and consistently
in a given project.
For the purpose of this book, we will define a
vehicle as being composed
of the following major
subsystems:
(1) Engine system
(2) Vehicle structure
(3) Guidance
sys.tem
(4) Payload
(5) Accessories
In the following,
we will concern ourselves
with the engine system only, except for brief
references
to the other systems,
as required.
We

22

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

o_
L_.

c_
..4

_._. _._.,

_ _

_ :._ ._ _
E-

;>

)
-=

L_r.

r.

r..

O
b-

o0
O

c_

I
t

o ._
-_._

<

r.

_"

r.
A

r.

z
L_

o
L_

:E
z

z
z

_
..

-,'-

=_

INTRODUCTION

TO

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

23

ENGINES

o
o
LO
kl

,:5

G_

;>
=

,-;
E

._ = r.,..

,_r,,

,-..1

,..4

...
r._
o
3
0,3

o_

c_
o

=_.

==

._

..'E
r.

,-.1

r,.

o"

r,,,

o_
z

"--

._
.O

""_

r.=..

r,,.

r,..

"=

e._

-,

r,,,

.
.O

co

_-_

0=
O

_._.

_=

_;_

_;

._

24

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

-_=
_=

_.

_'_

.-_

..4

....

c_

c7

.=

:E

=
_r

E_

;=

,-_ .-

r.

.4

E_

r_

.o

-_

O.
=

INTRODUCTION

TABLE

TO

LIQUID

1-6.-Perlormance

of

Specific
Propellant

Hydrogen

peroxide

Hydrazine

impulse
lb-sec/lb
(H=O2) (95%)

(N2H ,) ..............

PROPELLANT

Some

ROCKET

Liquid

Rocket

25

ENGINES

Monopropellants

Density
Is,
a

impulse
Id,
sec gm/cc

Applications

Remarks

140

198

Gas generators
for turbopump
and auxiliary
drive;
small
control
rockets

Difficult

handling

205

207

Gas generators:
rockets

Difficult

handling

small

control

compose

at high

(can

de-

temper-

ature)
Nitromethane

(CH3NO

180

=) .........

204.8

Small

ordnance

rockets

Dangerous

handling

detonate
Methylacetylene

a Theoretical

value

at 300

psia

TABLE 1-7.-Theoretical

(15%

(Pc)ns,

NO 2) .

Gas

optimum

generators;

expansion,

small

frozen

of Some Medium-Energy
Combinations

Fuel
UDMH ....................

Hydrazine

................

rw

rv

2.99

1.51

1.26

3.24

1.63

1.27

1.47

95

1.28

1.54

,99

1.29

gas

rockets

composition

Storable

or frozen

Liquid

}_

c*

!5340

23.7

5490

1619

!5315

24.2

5435

1630

5090

20.8

5690

1.602

5100

211

5665

1.608

Tc

Safe handling;
very smoky

Ct

Is ilsd
276
275

348
350

283
283

362
365

1.26

1.27

5250

22.4

5580

1.610

279

354

242

1.39

1 29

5220

23.0

5510

1.618

277

358

3.11

1,70

1.31

5295

24,1

5425

1.620

273

358

3.33

1.82

1.32

5270

24.5

5375

1.630

272

359

4.80
5.14

2A8
2.65

1.35
136

5355
5330

25.8
262

5275
5225

II.636
!1.646

268

]362

267

363

4,09
4.37

2.08
2.23

1.32!5325
1.33
5300

25.1
25.5

5335
5280

1.632
1.640

270
269

356
358

4.13

2.16

1.33,5310

246

5320

1628

269

358

2,89

1.47

1.26!4935

....

5130_1.626

259

326

MMH .....................

2.47

138

1.28

5290

....

5550:1.618

279

357

TMA .....................

4.01

1,61

1.21

5285

....

5375

1625

271

328

UDMH ....................

4.54
4.74

2,53
2.64

1.24
1.25

4800
4780

217
21,3

5530
5505

;1.620
!1.620

278
277

345
346

Hydrazine

2.17

1.54

1.26

4675

19.5

5655

11.604

2,20

1,57

1.26

4675

19.5

5655

1.604

282
282

355
'355

3.35

212

1.25

4760

20.5

5580:1.610

3,47

2,20

1,26

4740

20,6

5560

1.615

279
279

349
351

4,68

2.83

1.27

4765

21,3

5485

1.'622

276

350

4.87

2.95

1.28

4745

21.4

5465

275

352

7,35

4.18

1.30

4785

22,1

5405

1.627

273:355

432
J
6,20q3.49
6,45/3.63
i

1.31

4765

22.2

5390

1.620

271

355

1.28
1.29

4770
4745

218
21.9

544011622
5415
1.618

274
272

351
351

Hydyne

RP-1

hydrazine...

...................

......................

TMB-1,

JP-X

3-D ...............

(60%

92.5%

JP-4,

40% UDMH)

E.A ................

peroxide

50%

................

UDMH-50%

Hydyne

Hydrazine

...................

I
RP-1 .....................

..

7.58
TMB-1,

3-D ...............

dangerous
and
exhaust
fumes
equilibrium.

Rocket

2.20

50% UDMH-50%

95% hydrogen

sea-level

Performance

Oxidizer

IRFNA

108.6

160

...............

(can

unexpectedly)

Bipropellant

Applications
Small air-to-air,
air-to-surface
rockets
and
upper stages
of
space
vehicles

'1.619

Manned
small

aircraft,
air-to-air.

air-to-surface
rockets,
and
upper stages
of
space
vehicles

26

DESIGN

TABLE

1-7.-Theoretical

OF LIQUID

Performance

of

PROPELLANT

Some

Medium-Energy

Combinations

Oxidizer
Nitrogen

Fuel

tetroxide.

UDMH ...................
Hydyne

' RP-1

..................

3-D ..........

% E.A ..........
Chlorine

trifluoride

RP-1

...................

..................

TMB-I,

Bromine

3-D ..............

Hydrazine

Liquid

Rocket

Bipropellant

, T.l,lc.lc,

IV

1.61

1.20

5685

24.5

] 1.61

1.22

5650

124.1

55801

1.24

5655

!24,7

5525

1.25

5745

25.7

1.27
1 23

5755265
5715
25.2

538511639
5495
1631

1 Is

55551632

295
4.04

1.75
2.26

4.50

2.51

J 3.55
i
3.90
J
2.59

196
2.15

Applications

282

339

626 ! 282

344

ICBM,

280

347

ALBM.
smallairto air, surfaceto-air
rockets,

1631

544011

, I sfl

636

Manned

IRBM,

276

345

274

_348

upper

stages

278

342

space

vehicles

of

1.24

5710

25.9

5425

1.645

1.45

1.19

5290

....

5260

1.635

267 rr
318

303
328

131
1.42

1.38

6305

258

5630

1.602

280

386

1 40

6330

26.2

5605

1.589

277

388 I ALBM.

298

1 40

1.43

6220

26.1

5555

1,599

320

150

144

6250

265

5535

1.595

274

395

276
258
230

rockets, upper
stages of space
395iL air-launched
364
vehicles
386

266

373

261

374

277

344

320

1 42

1 41

5890

29.1

5140

1.618

12.80
3 17
3.60

566
1.39
1.57

168
1.40

5735
6035

370
27.6

4535
5330

1636
1608

3.35

..............

1.37

1 43
186

6040
5570

28,1
....

5280
5000

i1 592
1 565

ICBM,

IRBM
and small

_
243

453

Small air-launchec
rockets

pentafluoride

TABLE

aircraft,

t UDMH ....................
I
Hydyne

Storable

....................

T_IB-I,

ENGINES

(Continued)

rye

I 2.95
I
2.71

ROCKET

1-8.-Theoretical

Performance

o[

Some

High-Energy

Storable

Liquid

Rocket

Bipropellant

Combinations

Oxidizer
95% Hydrogen

rw

Fuel
peroxide

Hydrazine

.............

201

rv
1 26

1.41

1 037
Pemaborane
Nitrogen

tetroxide

UDMH

............

................

Hydrazine

270
_2.61
1.34

.............

1.42
50% UDMH-50%

2hlorine

trifluoride

...

Hydra_ine

19.5

Is

Isd

Applications

6067
5735

I1 601
11600

285

359

302

313

]CBM,

IRBM.

ALBM

5390

19 01

5685

236

15650

1.624

285

336

1.22
1 23

5390
5415

20.9
213

5845

1 610

292

357

IRBM,

ALBM.

5815

1605

290

357

upper

stages

22.6
23 0

5725
5665

288
348
288
348
288:346

i
!FBM,

ICBM.

1.24
1 33

1.21
1.21

5590
5570

MMH .................

2.16

1 31

1 20

5635

I .....

5720

1.620
1 636
1.621

Hydrazine

2.77
2.94

1.53

1.51

6550

[232

5995

1 582

1.62

1.52

6600'236

590

2.89
311

1.42

1.45

6385 24.5

5795

1 572
1 596

292:444
287
416

IRBM,
upper

1.53
1.44

1.46
1,44

6420124.9
6400
....

5770
5763

1.598
1,591

286
285

417
410

of space
vehicles

4430

6402

1644

327

261

ICBMIRBM

..............
Hydrazine

MMH ...................

...........

.99

4775

C!
c*

2.00
2.15

50% UDMH-50%

Hydrazine

.93

1.18

1 188
1.42

Tc]

Pentaborane

3.00
............

1.4

85

.796
A

147

t294,444

of space
vehicles

FBM,

ICBM,
ALBM
stages

INTRODUCTION

TABLE

1-9.-Theoretical

TO

Performance

LIQUID

of

PROPELLANT

Some

ROCKET

High-Energy

27

ENGINES

Cryogenic

Liquid

Bipropellant

Rocket

Combinations

Oxidizer

Liquid

Fuel
RP-1

oxygen..

.....................

Ammonia
95%

.................

E.A ..................

Hydrazine

rv

2.00

1.421

2.40

1.708

2.56
2.73

1.82
1.94

Hydyne

..................

(b)

294

293

1.620

300:303

1.02
1.03

6150
6200

23.3
239

5920
5865

1.632
1.642

300306
299
308

.88

5055

19.3

5920

1.608

296

260

.89
.99

5100
5640

198
24.1

5865
5605

1.612
1.648

294
287

261
2S4

1.80

1.28

1.00

5675

24.4

5585

1.644

285

285

1.07

5660

19,3

6235

1618

313

335

1.30
1.03
1.37il.08

1.02
1.03

5980
5905

20.6
20.9

6160

11,628

312

318

6155

'1.622

310

319

1.73_1.31

1.02

5990

21.81

1,632

306

312

6030

22.2

6035
6010

1.639

306

312

1631
:1.638

310
307

30,t
304

11.642
1.650

303
303

308
306

.80

21.3

6115

.99
1.01

6065
6100

22.1
22.9

6040

TMB-1.3-D

1.83 1.27
2.28 ! 1.60
2.37

1,01

6120

23.2

5915

................

Performance

of

Liquid

hydrogen

Hydrazine

1.66

Some

which

Nozzle

Cryogenic

r.,

rv

Tc

,_

c*

CI

Is

0.28

4935

10.0

7980

1.578

391

109

4960

23,4

5300

1.610

265

172

2.30

1.54

1.31

7955

19,4'7245

1615

363

476

2.40

1.61

1.32

7980

19,6

1.614

362

478

.65

7225

7.60

.35

.45

6505

11.818365

1.578

410

185

23.70
3.29

1.10
1.48

.82
1.18

8230
7715

18.5
19,3

7515
7155

1.592
1.605

372
357

305
421

3.40

1.53

1.18

7745

19.5

7140

1612

357

422

TABLES

calculations

[RBM,

large

space-probe
space
craft
boosters

Rocket

Isd

1.20

.....

ICBM,

Liquid

0.25

FOR

the performance

Very-High-Energy

Applications

and

Bipro-

Combinations

4.02

..........

...........

5945

19.50

.....

hydrogen

102

I-7

THROUGH
tw

= Propellant

Applications
Space

probe

space
stage
Space

and

craft upper
and booster
probe

upper

stage

I-i0
weight

mixture

ratio

(wt.

ratio

(vol.

oxidizer/wt.

fuel)

Combustion
exit

chamber

pressure

pressure

= ambient

nozzle

expansion

(c)

Chamber
contraction
throat
area) = infinity

(d}

Adiabatic

combustion

(e)

Isentropic

expansion

composition
Symbols:

1,605

5953

6010

..........

(optimum
ation)

(2)

5898

22.8

.98

NOTES

(a)

211

6100

.84
1.23

Fuel

upon

5760

1.012

1.14

Ammonia

Conditions
are based

0.998

1.65

Liquid

(1)

Isd

UDMH ....................

..........

fluorine

Is

1.36

Oxidizer

Liquid

Ct

1.80

1-10.-Theoretical

oxygen

c*

.78

pellant

Liquid

1.40
1,73
90

Hydrazine.,

Tc

1.30

.................

50% UDMH-50%

TABLE

rw

or shifting

ratio

= 1000

pressure

ratio

gas

equilibrium

tv

= Propellant
fuel)

= Bulk density
of propellant
combination
(gm/cc).
(The density
at boiling
point was used for those
oxidizers
or foels which boil below 68 F at one

= 14,7 psia

at sea-level

(chamber

of ideal

psia

oper-

area/nozzle

with

volume

atmosphere

pressure)

Tc =Theoretical

chamber

= Average

shifting

molecular

mixture

temperature,
weight

oxidizer/vol.

_F

of combustion

at Tc

in the nozzle
c*

=Theoretical

characteristic

velocity

(ft/sec)

products

28

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

NOTES

FOR

TABLES

i-7

THROUGH

I-i0

(Continued)

C[ :Theoretica] thrust coefficient

900.....................................

99

Is : Theoretical maximum specific impulse, lb-sec/lb

800 .................................

98

700................................

97

600 ..................................

95

500 .................................

93

Multiply by-

400 ...............................

91

i00

300................................

88

lsd= Theoretical maximumdensity impulse, sec-gm/cc


(3) To approximate Is and lsd at other chamber pressures.
Pressure (psia):
I000 ...............................

further define that the engine system shall comprise all parts without which the propulsive
force cannot be generated.
Thus, we will include the propellant
tanks and their accessories.
A system thus defined frequently
is called a
propulsion
system.
We know, from the above,
that by including the tanks, we may be "infringing" on the vehicle structure
by other definitions.
Thus prepared,
we may now proceed to subdivide the engine system further into major
components
or subassemblies
as follows:
(I) Thrust chamber assembly
(2) Propellant
feed system:
One of the following two is generally
used:
Pressurized gas propellant
feed system and
turbopump propellant
feed system.
The
latter includes
some type of tank pressurization
system
(3) Valves and control systems
(4) Propellant
tankage
(5) Interconnect
components
and mounts
Depending
on the engine system selected,
one
or another subsystem
may not be required or may
be integrated
with another one. Typical liquid
propellant
rocker engine systems are shown in
figures 1-12 and 1-13.
The rocket has occasionally
been called the
simplest
propulsion
system known.
The simplest
form of a solid propellant
rocket or of a pressurized gas-fed storable
liquid propellant
rocket
appears to come close to this ideal.
Unfortunately, simplicity
frequently
is synonymous
with
inflexibility.
Due to vehicle requirements,
substantial departures
from the basic simplicity
may
become necessary
to meet requirements
such as:
light weight, high performance,
thrust control,
thrust vector control, restartability,
cutoff ira-

pulse control, propellant


utilization
control
(sometimes
called propellant
management),
storability, ease of handling,
etc. Thus, modern
rocket engines contain more subsystems
than
their basic principle
of operation
may suggest,
to meet the often stringent
vehicle requirements.
This is true for both liquid as well as solid
propellant
systems.
In general however, the
liquid propellant
engine is the more flexible one,
particularly
where large systems
are considered.

A Check valve
B Pressurizing
diffuser
C Fuel tank
D Pressurizing
diffuser
E

gas

gas

Pressurizing
gas
line
F Check valve
G Oxidizer tank
H Fuel duct
I Fuel tank fill and
drain valve
J Main fuel valve

K High-pressure
helium bottle
L Pressure
regulator
M Heat exchanger
N Fuel tank vent and
relief valve
O Oxidizer tank vent
and relief valve
P Oxidizer tank fill
and drain valve
Q Oxidizer duct
R Main oxidizer valve
S Thrust chamber
assembly

Figure 1-12.-Typical
pressurized
propellant
rocket engine

gas feed liquid


system.

INTRODUCTION

Check

Fuel

valve

Check

Pressurizing

Oxidizer

lr

Fuel

High

Gas

tank
valve
gas

line

tank

TO LIQUID

Pressure

Heat

Turbine

Thrust

Fuel

duct

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

regulator

cryogenic

exchanger
exhaust

duct

chamber
tank

assembly

pressure

helium
and

bottle

valve

assembly
I

Turbine

Gas

turbine

starting

vent

and

Main

fuel

Figure

fill

relief

Oxidizer

tank

gas

diffuser

W Oxidizer

duct

Pressurizing

gas

diffuser

Oxidizer

pump

Oxidizer

Fuel

pump

Gear

box

tank

vent

and

relief

valve
Inter-tank

turbopump

and

fill

valve

Pressurizing

quired
1-13.-Typical

tank

T
valve

Fuel

spinner

insulation
for cryogenic
feed

combi-

liquid

drain

valve

valve

generator

propellant

nation)

(re-

AA Main

oxidizer

and nonpropellant

rocket

engine

system.

valve

and

drain

Chapter
Rocket
2,1

THE MAJOR ROCKET


PARAMETERS

Engine

ENGINE

DESIGN

To fit the engine system properly into a


vehicle system, engine systems
design and development
specifications
will have to cover the
following parameters
above all:
(1) Thrust level
(2) Performance
(specific
impulse)
(3) Run duration
(4) Propellant
mixture ratio
(5) Weight of engine system at burnout
(6) Envelope
(size)
(7) Reliability
(8) Cost
(9) Availability
(time table-schedule)
As the design progresses,
numerous additional parameters
will have to be considered.
Before turning to the latter, let us briefly review
and discuss
those listed above.
It should be
noted that the last five items are closely
interdependent.
For instance,
making an engine
available
in the shortest
possible
time ("crash
program _) will raise the cost and will unfavorably affect reliability.
A longer design and
development
period may not necessarily
reduce
cost, but it will offer higher values in exchange
for the dollar;
higher reliability,
refined (lower)
weight, and an optimized
(smaller)
envelope.

Thrust

Design

II

Implements

results
from the decision
whether a single- or a
multiple-engine
system is to be used.
This decision is often strongly influenced
by the availability of already existing
engines,
which would
eliminate,
or at least drastically
reduce, the
design and development
cost for the propulsion
system.
The selection
of individual
engine
thrust level also is-or
at least should beinfluenced
by the general state of the art, particularly
if sizes substantially
larger than previously developed
are considered.
More recently,
largely
as a result
of the
advent of manned rocket flight and of the high
cost of very large vehicle systems,
the decision
to use a multiple (clustered)
propulsion
system
consisting
of several
engines rather than a single
one has been additionally
affected
by safety
considerations,
to permit mission completion,
or
at least safe return of the crew, in case of an
engine failure.
This "engine out" principle
is
analogous
to the consideration
of multipleversus single-engine
airplanes.
Extensive
studies have been conducted
in this field for rocket
vehicles
to establish
the "break-even"
point
regarding
the minimum and maximum number of
engines profitably
employed in a cluster.
Failure of single-engined
rocket vehicles
not only
might destroy the vehicles
themselves
but also
could cause severe damage to expensive
ground
facilities.
This explains
the great emphasis
placed on thrust subdivision.

Level

This engine parameter


is a basic one, similar
to the power rating of a gasoline
engine or electric motor. It will affect most of the other engine
parameters
and many of the development
considerations.

Thrust levels for first-stage


booster engines,
which start at or near sea-level
altitude
and stop
at a specified
higher altitude,
are usually quoted
for sea-level
conditions.
Additionally,
the specifications
may contain information
on thrust level

The total thrust requirement


of a rocketpropelled vehicle is predominantly
governed
by1. The total takeoff weight of the vehicle
(including
engine!)
2. Minimum and maximum accelerations
permissible

at altitudes
above sea level, frequently
form of a graph (see fig. 2-1).

Selection

of the proper

engine

thrust

level

in the

The nominal thrust of engines in stages


starting and operating
at or near-vacuum
conditions
is quoted for that environment.
Most engines are
designed
for a single nominal thrust (sea level
or altitude),
for which they are calibrated
by
31

32

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

its true
Kgrmgn

I SlEC
S_C_FE

q_PUL_

m CUTO=r

,ooT
zr_*

ROCKET ENGINES

significance.
observed:

IZSO'

L_Crr

Undoubtedly,
s

go

L2o

ALTITUDE

Figure

2-I.-Typical

graph

lormance

as

prompted

_r_

(FT

X I0 $)

both

o[ rocket

function

engine

per-

of propellant

quently,

with

designed

line

the

aid

some

discussed
Control."

type

or,

less

of regulators.

for variable

require

orifices

to sacrifice,

thrust

(throttling)

in section

7.3,

always

This

"Engine

will

Thrust

Level

Although

the

engine

of parameters

impulse

(Is)

impulse,

the

also

dimension

(specific

tant

to state

chamber
an

possible.

The
propellant

lished

and

quite

combinations,
sulted.
the use
been

has

combinations
a result

verified

as

received

are

disappointments

less
have

the

expressed
considerable

by its

specific
attention,

the

it should

properties

vehicle

fly

of

increase

of

miles.

In other

terms,

than

one-half

percent

of I percent.

As

figures

for increased

be kept

in mind

which

will

of a typical

an increase

will

at all

determine

should

flight

that

not

those
whether

be corn-

Duration

of Is

better
estab-

cluding

the

own

a result

mum

re-

by definition,

its

takeoff

well-known
often

Because,
carries

as

have

test.

performance

are,

case

off sub-

a range

increase

these

can

pay

great caution
is advisable
values
which
have not

in an actual
years,

well

values

With

range
engine

impor-

value

for the

practical

predictable.

Therefore,
of theoretical

In recent
engine,

as

in a range
as

Is which

in the

effect

bidding

will

missile,

results

theoretically

values

in Is will

impressive

highest

instance,

ballistic

thrust,

by stating

value

For

tank

situation.

compromise

of less

or to the

or "practical"

maximum

stantially.

the

design

and

for competitive

hand,

without

vehicle

of Is

system,

Frequently,

theoretical

known

value

other

be obtained

on Is during
to marginal

initial

to this

15 nautical

lb/(lb/
It is

need

an Is increase

of the

sys-

amounted

assumptions

approximately

is not

impulse),

in the

spe-

an abbreviation

engine

"actual"

to the

specific

obviously

nearly

sometimes

be traced

weight

The

medium-range

performance

of

propulsion

emphasis

can

contributed

1 second

I, the

to as

a specified

only.

a num-

specific

respectively.

complete

percentage

prime

(specific

whether

thrust

the

which

thrust),

to the

etc.),

in chapter

but

of a

covers

Cf,

referred

of time,

refers

become

seen

lb-sec/lb

sec)

linked

c*,

in seconds,

dimension

is

was

_performance"

sense

considered

As

measured

term

strict

(Is,

is

parameter
is

general

in the

which

reserves

capacities.

rocket

customer,

the

to compromise,

increasing

with

On the

part

as

well

of a rocket

of a project

have

were
on the

1 percent.

especially

Performance

cific

than

life

may

ber

or at least

engineering

be

as

capabilities

Frequently,
the

trend

builder

for Is increases,

to less

fre-

Engines

of regulator.

Dr. von

observations

a noticeable

engine

all other

of altitude.

these

by

the

tem
means

1959,

]t is my personal
belief that the length of the
period of attaining
reasonable
reliability
in the development process
could be essentially
reduced
if simple
design were emphasized
as a leading principle,
even
if we had to make some sacrifice
in the quantitative
measure of "efficiency."
Essential
elements
have to
be designed
as simply as possible,
even if this means
a reduction
in quantitative
efficiency
and a certain
increase
of bulkiness
andsor weight.

F_

so

In June

oxidizer,

run-duration
in

rocket
about

times

User

balance

(such

as

impulse,

(PFRT)

and

far

mulated

duration

level,

large

include

qualification
times,

without

mini-

liquid-propellant
narrow

a formal
flight

tests)

and

Consequently,

a relatively

preliminary

in-

is limited,
between

thrust

of most

specifications

stration

supply,

run duration

accelerations.

engines
fall into
50 to 400 seconds.

of a rocket
beyond

its

trajectory,

maximum

vehicle

propellant

of an optimized

weight,
and

a rocket

complete

rating

requiring
breakdown,

band,

demontests
accuof

ROCKET ENGINE

many

times

duration

the

comparatively

(typical:

PFRT

six

rated

flight

This

tests

for

exit

short

full

duration

of an ICBM).

These

design

of the

following

erations
(1)

therefore,

considerations,

are

areas,

to the

tank

which

the

flight-run

most

power

supply
(2)

Propellant-tank
it is

(3)

Lube

pressurization

part

of the

oil tank

engine

capacity,

(4) Temperature

supply,

if

system
if applicable

of uncooled

start and shutdown

of which

three

parameters

the

capability
or all

of them.

If,

tory

angle

near

point

the

guidance

characteristics

for both of which

(l)

and

or "thrust

may

(3)

quality

the

re-

intricate

predetermine

the

but

have

also

for deviations

for instance,

the

of cutoff

is

of
trajec-

too

compensate

steep,

accord-

final

cutoff

of a liquid

effect

velocity,

signal,

specified

thrust

versus

rate

of increase

during

buildup

Freedom
shoots

from

surges

at any

and

thrust

time

is

by

simultane-

over

a prompt

cutoff

several

required

ground

structural

it is
thrust

to sense

and

the

shows

a typical

valves

residual

have

an

thrust

transmit

requires

hammer)

superimposed;

below

impossible

the
a finite

considerapropellants

effect.

decay

to

cessation:

then

of valves

(hydraulic

repeatable

is imperative.

reasons,

closing

are

and

signal

instantaneous

signal;

tions

Let

(freedom from damaging

for

time;

over-

distance

that

of the
a truly

time

rocket

the

It is obvious

cutoff

with

(4) Smoothness

covered.

However,

of the

characteristics

(2) Maximum

With

is literally

only

will

the

envi-

mentioned

for a higher

considering

execution

by-

Compliance
time

the

buildup,"

judged

the

system

delaying

already

be very stringent in a given vehicle system.

are

wind).

to compensate

by calling

slightly

as
barrel

not

will

(neglecting

system,

any

characteristics of an engine

system, the requirements

engine

gun

guidance

components

ously

"start,"

such

the

atti-

emplacement

of impact

influences

basic

gun

muzzle

nozzles

Closely related to the run duration are the

The

gun-barrel

point

by the

ingly,

nonequilibria, such as those

where

projectile,
of the

rocket,

placed

duration:

turbine

the

ballistic

consid-

to a cannon,

of the

location

ronmental

for systems

a separate

and

determine

exception

for weight

capacity,

employ

govern

with

which

tailored

Auxiliary

is analogous
velocity

tude,

specifications,

engine

33

DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

Figure

2-2

diagram.

us recall:

oscil-

Ft = may

lations)
(5) Repeatability from run to run and from
engine to engine
These characteristics will be discussed
greater detail in chapter X, "Engine
Design

Thrust multiplied by time equals mass

times

velocity increase, or
in

Systems

Av=

Integration." Suffice it to state, at this

Ft
m

point that a rocket engine is not easy to adapt


with special thrust buildup requirements.

Difficu_rr

ro

ca.as[

culties in this area can arise from inadequate


communication

between

and

the

contractor.

ing

of the
The

"thrust

engine

decay"

by both

are

"ballistic"

To

implies,

the

ballistic
the

impart

a desired

speed

desired

direction

from

which

the

payload

is vital,
or

influenced
understand

case

freely

this

As

the

is designed

to a known
a desired

by

of a single-stage,

missile.
missile

coasts

understand-

"shutdown"

predominantly

us consider

ground-to-ground,

contractor

contractors

of engine

considerations.
let

vehicle
Thorough

characteristics

guidance
better,

problems

the

F.Y.
IOO

payload,

point,

after

to the

target.

term
to

in a
TIWE

Figure

F_OI,

2-2.-Typical

I CUTOFF

S_ONAL

{SEC

thrust

decay

diagram.

34

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

The velocity increase


following cutoff signal
is a function of the residual
thrust acting on the
vehicle mass m, and is integrated
over the time
from cutoff signal to final thrust cessation;
this
integral is commonly referred to as the "cutoff
impulse."
A typical value for a well-known
earlier rocket (Redstone)
was 16 000 lb-sec
z2500.
Note the tolerance.
This deviation
will
obviously
influence
missile accuracy.
Reduction
of the tolerance
is thus an important design and
development
goal.
It might be concluded
that a substantial
reduction of the tolerance
is the principal
task,
zero deviation
being the optimum.
This is unfortunately
not so because
the final vehicle mass
m, on which the decaying
thrust force acts, is
unpredictable
within certain limits, due to weighing tolerances
of the initial vehicle mass, and to
flow rate and mixture ratio tolerances.
The
engine designer and developer
will have to concentrate on reducing both: base value and
tolerance.
A glance at figure 2-2 shows that the area
under the thrust curve is a function of not only
decay time but also of main-stage
thrust level.
In fact, the major portion of the shaded area is
accumulated
prior to the beginning
of thrust
decay.
This observation
has led to the utilization of vernier thrust systems.
A vernier cutoff system is characterized
by a
substantial
thrust reduction
before final cutoff.
This can be accomplished
by thrust reduction,
for a few seconds,
of the main engine itself (V-2
fashion) or by shutdown of the main engines,
while much smaller engines continue
for a brief
period (typical:
0-25 seconds,
depending
on
final __v required).
It should be emphasized
that any components
that must be added to improve cutoff characteristics are basically
undesirable,
since engine
complexity
is drastically
increased.
The addition of such components
should be avoided at all
costs.
Here again, close coordination
between
the vehicle (guidance)
designer and engine designer, and thorough understanding
of their common problems,
is vital.
Mixture

Ratio

As is well known, complete combustion


of a
given amount of fuel requires
a corresponding

amount

of oxidizer.

That

mixture

ratio

which

effects complete combustion,


with no leftover of
either fuel or oxidizer,
is called the stoichiometric mixture ratio.
This ratio depends on the
type of propellants
used.
Tbeoretical
temperature and heat release
are maximum at this ratio.
In rocket engines,
however, where the highest
possible
exhaust velocity
is desired,
optimum
conditions
often prevail at other than stoichiometric ratios.
Equation
1-18 indicates
that the
gas properties
strongly affect exhaust velocity.
The expression
for the specific
gas constant,
R,
in equation
1-18 may be rewritten
as-

where R' is the universal


gas constant
and
is
the molecular
weight of the gas (see table 1-1).
The lower tile molecular
weight, the higher
the exhaust velocity,
other things being equal.
Analytical
and experimental
investigations
will
determine
the optimum point of balance between
energy release (heat) and composition
(molecular
weight) of the gas, a portion of which will consist of gasified but unburnt propellants.
The
optimum point may also be affected
by(l) Stay time of the burning gas in the combustion chamber.-Stay
time is a function
of combustion
chamber volume and of
gas volumetric
flow rate.
Complete combustion, even though desirable,
requires
a finite time which is not available
unless the chamber is relatively
large, and
correspondingly
heavy.
A compromise
in chamber size, therefore,
is often
made. This leaves unburned a small
percentage
even of those propellants
entering the nozzle, which could have
burned given sufficient
time (chamber
volume).
This percentage
must be considered for accurate
determination
and
optimization
of the composition
of the
combustion
gases and when optimizing
the gas properties
with energy release
and system weight.
(2) Cooling conslderations.-The
temperatures
resulting
from stoiehiometric
or nearstoichiometric
mixture ratios, dependent
on propellant
type, may impose severe
demands on the chamber-wall
cooling

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

system.
A lower temperature,
therefore,
may be desired and obtained
by selecting a suitable
ratio.
Once the optimum mixture ratio has been determined for a given engine system, based on the
major factors just discussed,
it is obvious that
deviations
from it would result in engine performance penalties.
Since the vehicle powered
by an engine will have been sized and tanked to
conform with the specified
engine mixture ratio,
it is important to know that deviations
will also
result in reduced vehicle performance,
namely:
(1) Reduced engine duration,
due to premature
exhaustion
of one of the propellants
(2) Reduced mass ratio, due to excessive
residual amounts of the other propellant
(increased
burnout weight)
Since the relationship
between engine performance (/s) and mixture ratio for many systems
is usually relatively
flat near the optimum point
(fig. 2-3), the effects from duration and burnout
weight may well be the most influential
ones for
vehicle range.
The effects of even minor discrepancies
in
mixture ratio (propellant
utilization)
are substantial.
For instance,
in a typical
single-stage
medium-range
ballistic
missile,
each pound of
excess
burnout weight will result in a range decrease of approximately
0.2 nautical
miles.
For
long-range
vehicles,
the penalty is still higher.
The close target tolerances
that have occasionally been reported for test flights illustrate
the
remarkable
degree of accuracy
which can be
achieved
from all contributing
subsystems.

320

,.0 zao

Z60
LO

I 2
O/F

MIXTURE

L4

1.6

L Jr

2D

RATIO

Figure 2-3.-Theoretical
thrust chamber performance
vs mixture
ratio
for N204/N2H4
at
Pc = 1000 psia shifting equilibrium
and optimum
sea level expansion.

35

Weight
The parameter
of weight, as no other, dominates the thinking of those employed in rocketry.
Weight of payload flown over a distance,
or
placed into orbit, is the ultimate accomplishment. Success
is often gaged directly in pounds
of payload flown per dollar spent.
The importance
weight rightfully carries does
not necessarily
mean that it is all important.
For
instance,
a somewhat
smaller payload placed
into orbit more reliably,
or at a lower cost per
pound, may be preferred.
By and large however,
weight is a most important consideration.
As we have seen earlier, a vehicle's
final
velocity
is a function
eters, its mass ratio.

of, among other paramThe smaller the final

mass, the higher the final


since payload mass should
ble, the weight squeeze
is
vehicle components
which
includes
the engine.
To isolate
the influence

velocity.
However,
be as high as possiapplied to all those
are not payload.
This
of vehicle-structures

weight, a parameter
called "propellant
fraction"
has come into increased
usage.
This factor expresses
the ratio of the total propellant
weight
to the fueled vehicle weight without payload.
Typical values are 0.94 for turbopump-fed
systems, and 0.89 for pressure-fed
systems.
For
turbopump-fed
engines,
the ratio of thrust to
engine weight is a useful additional
yardstick.
Larger modern liquid rocket engines
may fall
into a range from 75 to 125 pounds of thrust/lb
of engine weight.
These figures represent
asubstantial
progress
over the past (see fig. 2-4).
As was seen with residual
propellants,
excessive dead weight at burnout imposes penalties.
Therefore,
whenever rocket engines
can be made
lighter without compromising
reliability
and
structural
integrity,
the payoff in range and payload will be sizable.
Engine and vehicle builders
usually distinguish several
types of engine weight:
(1) Dry weight.-The
net weight of the engine
as it leaves the factory.
(2) Burnout weight.-The
engine dry weight
plus residual,
measurable
propellants
remaining in the engine at cutoff.
In a
typical engine design,
burnout weight
may be 4 percent higher than dry weight.
Burnout weight is significant
for vehicle
mass ratios (eq. 1-30).

36

DESIGN OF LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

(a)
(b)
_arly

Navaho

(Rocketdyne

Engine

Early

1953)

(c)

Redstone

(Rocketdyme

Engine

German

1952)

V-2

Engine

(1942)

ThrustsL:
120,000 ib
Dry Weight:
1230 lbs

ThrustsL:
75,(>00 ib
_ry Wei___ht: 1475 lb

Tb_ustsL:
56,000
Dry _elght:
2484

Is3 L = 230

Iss L = 215

Iss L = 199 sec

Figure

2-4.-Substantial

by:
war

sec

(a)

postwar

engine

(I942),

progress
engine

(1952),

thrust:

(1953),

thrustSL:

56 000

Ib,

has

been

made

thrustsL:
75 000 lb,

dry weight:

sec
in

120000
dr}, weight:
2484

ratio

o[ thrust

to engine

lb, dry

weight:

1230

1475

lb, lss L --199

Ib,
sec.

lss L =215

Ib,
sec;

weight
IssL
(c)

as

=230

lb
lb

demonstrated
sec;

German

(b) postV-2

engine

ROCKET ENGINE

(3)

Wet

weight.-The

all

engine

propellant

stage.

within

In a typical

weight

dry
it,

design,

may be 6 percent

weight.

Wet weight

vehicle
in-flight
tion and moments

weight

during

is

plus

ing and
location

main

engine
higher

than

center-of-gravity
of inertia.

routing
of lines,
of valves.

Because

wet

significant

dry

rocket

of the

engine

Wet gimbaled
weight

weight.-That

representing

is gimbaled
earlier
the

thrust

In later

to the

entire

small

amount

weight

is

loads

and

sponse
dry

equal:

that

in the

engine

not

always

designer

this

chamber

weight.

Ideally,

for steering

designs

and

shows

engine

guidance

control

loop

is,

and

This

no propellants
at shutdown.

be

possible.

weight

do much

through

be

should

be trapped
this

proper

based

and calculated figures,


results. This

of a rocket engine.

will be on.

is

of design
More often

will disappear

For convenient

the weight tendencies


shown

display of

over time, a graph such as

in figure 2-5 will be useful.

The

will

weight changes

of the various compo-

nents as well as of the entire engine affect cen-

engine
design,

the
almost

gradually as the design firms up; then the

should

the

However,

the data are

than not, the weight advantage

re-

In practice,
However,

is shown.

that

and development

squeeze

burnout

a useful tool to raise

rather than on actual weighing

actuator

2-i

In our arbitrary example

characteristic for the earlier phases

parts.

for gimbal

Table

Division of North Amer-

it becomes

entirely on estimated

refers

a relatively

of stationary

ically. Thus

table also shows

wet

it often

control,

engineers

Itis revised and reissued period-

a slight underweight

essentially

and

a typical weight progress form, as it is

early danger warnings.

characteristics.

weight

can

In

less

significant

of wet

purposes.
injector

of weight
employ

specifically in charge of this area.

which

designs

of traps,

loca-

mass

meant

importance

manufacturers

used by the Rocketdyne

portion

engine

avoidance

for

can Aviation.
(4)

37

DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

siz-

ters of gravity and moments

of inertia. Through

2600

2450
REV SPEC BURNOUt
2300
REV SPEC DRY

//
1

2150

BURNOUT
2000
_"

......_ /

)85o

/
1700 /
ENGINE
ACCESS
BURNOUT
.....................

ORIGINAL

IS PEc 'r...........................
ORIGINAL

ENGINE
ACCESS
DRY

................
1400

GO
AHEAD

iSPECI.......................
3

I0

II

12

MONTH
,

Figure 2-5.-A-2 stage rocket engine and accessory

weight history.

13

14

15

16

38

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

_=
E;

4.

_-

4-

oj
b

"7,
c_

L_.

E_

-_-

ROCKET

ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

A-2

CENTER

OF

STAGE

GRAVITY

ROCKET

AND

ENGINE

MOMENT

OF

INERTIA

DATA

ISSUE

ENCLOSURE

DATE

PAGE

OF

LOX

Pump

_"'_

F uet

Pump

_ GIHBAL

( Y

0 )

I
NOTE:

(_erns

(I)

about

specified

thru

U_e moment

(31 Tepcesent
C.G,'s.

the
items

of inerti_

about

rnorr_t

o( iner',ia

(41 and (S) represent

the

referenced

gJmbal

axis.

MOMENT

WEIGHT
DESCRIPTION

LBS.

07

Wet

2317

-225

.15

--0

Burnout

2292

-227

.I

-0

Dry

2061

-25.2

-I

Wet

2086

-246

. I S

Rocket

Engine

_ Act.

(3)

Rocket

En|ine

. Ace.

{4)

Gimb_lled

Mass

(5)

Gimballed

Mass

Figure

2-6.-Typical

sheet

concerned
as

as

can

they

data

shown

be

kept

2-5 and

engine

system

multistage
later

sheet

in figure

for

2-6,

informed

all

for the
is a part

vehicle

now

weight

has

on

weight

of a rocket

185

4tl

379

184

408

375

I_

672

649

177

688

662

and

moment

of inertia.

in

A-2

usable

Stage

propellant

stage

explore
the

varies

(2-1)
/

weight

the

influence

performance
vehicle
with

and gross
system,

the

will

structural
and

design

takeoff
how

parameters

its

Stage

inert_

Stage

weight

residual
weight

of
Stage

The quantitative

be evaluated

individually

propellant

at burnout

Stage
system

for

engine
weight

(1-30)

velocity
velocity

of a multistage

can

be rewritten

for the

of a single-stage
increment,
vehicle

of any
system

vehicle,
individual
as:

structure,

. guidance
T weights,
not

Equation
burnout

weight.)

in

case.

stage

inert

weight

weight

treated

Stage

+payload+

weight

of an assumed

configuration

vehicle systems.

relationships
each

362

g" (Is)on

in table 2-1 and


150K

IZ-Z

where

us

different

-- Cvc

X-X

FT 2

391

Stage

2-6 are
which

space

magnitude

Vbo

- SLUG

t76

-02

of gravity

INERTIA

on

chapters.
Let

center

OF

Y-Y

0.2

occur.

Note that the data presented


figures

INCHES
Z - ARM

. IS

(2)

changes

.233

_ Ace;-

of a data

X GRAVITY
- ARM

2181

RocketEnsine

parties

Y - CENTER(OF
ARH

DrX

(I)

issue

t,

and other
which
are

(2-2)

payload

stage
or the
stage

It can

be concluded

for a given
weight

trade

burnout

from

these

velocity,

off between

there
stage

equations
is an

engine

even

system

that

4O

DESIGN OF LIQUID

weight

and

of all

stage

other

decrease

payload

items

were

in the

increase

the

For
except

payload

payload,

engine

weight

the

stage

stage
engine
can be written

If the

constant,

engine

a fixed

between

kept

stage

stage

weight.

weight

capacity

by

assuming

system
as

1 pound.

the

increment,

weight

will

other

to be constant,

velocity

weight

a pound

system

and

PROPELLANT

items

relation

Vbo,

for a given

and

system

ROCKET ENGINES

vehicle

trajectory.

vehicle

system

1 pound,

an increase

weight

at takeoff

tional

pounds

fined

as

load)

weight

increment
It is

Vbo = k 1 In

weight._

(2-3)

but

small

weight

isting

system

k_ = Cvcg(Is)oa

k2 = Stage payload
weight

Since
more

rapidly
weight.

crease

in burnout

cific

weight+k:

the

denominator

range

required

stage

(ls)oa

in terms

impulse
weight

can

The

decreasing

design

attaches

a tangible

an inwhich

will

the

overall

spe-

For

weight

pre-

because

importance

"uninvited

vehicles,

and

the

of the

with

of a

the

system,
A systems

value

size,

be large.

factor

weight.

it
of

weight
payload."

relatively

small

growth

sufficient

factor
accuracy

as

as
Total

vehicle

weight
Growth
k3
, + system
Stage
('s_oa:k4.'/in k 2

duet

during

to the

In

requiring
then

growth
tool

etc.

be "the

size,
will

engine

be expressed

of a
but

valves,

be considered

changes,
can

the

be small.

back,"

factor

value

single-stage

then

engine

may

addition

may

valve

a useful

engine-system

increase

instance,
in an ex-

the

camel's

of an

factor,

of propellants,
will

larger

is

For

increase

however,

system

a precise

tanks,

growth

liminary

of stage

be established

the

next

vehicle

for a fixed

average

like.

not

factor

weight

breaks

of the

In general,

= constant

orbit.
and

the

pay-

payload

growth

of the

growth

decrease

realized

velocity

that
use

or the

payloads,

is

or higher

burnout

= constant

the

the

and/or

require

amount

de-

by the

the

a band.

enlargement

case,

straw

with

for fixed

velocity

require

another

will

numerator,

Thus

a given

system

propellant
the

off in longer

payload,

guidance
weight

the

than

engine

For

structure,
and other

usable
k 2 < k3,

small

is

divided

of a component

may only

Accordingly,

residual

+ propellant
weight
at burnout

, Stage
lca = Stage

not

= constant
Stage

within

increase

is

of addi-

(including

inert
that

system,

varies

corresponding

where

pay

of added

by
system

factor

at takeoff,

vehicle

value,

number

system

emphasized

of the

vehicle

Growth

vehicle

part

allotment

total

result.

increase

weight.

weight

by a certain

total

causal

if one

its
of the

will

the

for a given

k(__.
++Stagestage
engineengine
system
_]

Therefore,
exceeds

weight
engine
weight

(2-5)
weight

(2-4)

/
+ system

facto[Payload

]\

system

at takeoff

For

any

stage

approximate
total

where

vehicle

expressed

Vbo

of a multistage

value

of the

system

vehicle,

growth

weight

the

factors

against

at takeoff

can

be

as

k 4 = C--vcg = constant
Total
Equation

(2-4)

engine-system
pulse

requirements

Another
system.

is

the

For

with

instance,

the

loaded

and

thus

nents,

such

as

vehicle

Growth

specific
the

factor

factor

im-

if the

weight
possibly

a pump,

weight

of the
that

vehicle

of a compo-

to adjust

The
vehicle
lower

growth

factors

system
stage

weight

can

(2-6)
Stage

payload

of other
i.e.,

the

of any

stage

at ignition

be expressed

weight
against
of the

the
same

or

as

for this
Vehicle

propellants

to maintain

performance;

importance

of a rocket

it is possible

by increasing

decreasing

overall

illustrating

growth

increases,

required

that
the

system

at takeoff

decrease.

parameter

of weight
nent

shows

weight,

vehicle

weight

compo-

stage

same

payload

system

at same
Growth
and

factor

weight

or lower
ignition

(2-7)
Stage

payload

weight

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENT5

Sample

Calculation

(2-I)

A three-stage
rocket vehicle system has the
following weight data: Total vehicle system
weight at takeoff,
40000 pounds.
Vehicle system weight at second-stage
ignition,
7500
pounds;
vehicle system at third-stage
ignition,
2200 pounds;
payload weight, 700 pounds.
For
each pound increase
of engine system weight of
first, second, and third stages,
respectively,
determine
(at a constant
vehicle performance):
(a) increases
of total vehicle system weight at
takeoff;
(b.) increases
of vehicle system weight
at second- and third-stage
ignition.
Solution
Payload
weight of first stage = vehicle
system weight at second-stage
ignition =
7500 pounds
Payload weight of second stage =vehicle
system weight at third stage ignition =
2200 pounds
Payload weight of third stage = actual
system payload weight =700 pounds
From equation (2-6):
(1) Growth factor of first stage against
vehicle system takeoff weight =
Vehicle

For each pound increase


of third-stage
enginesystem weight, the increase
on vehicle system takeoff weight = 62.9 pounds
(b) Note that the weight growth of lower
stages will not affect the upper stage weight
growth.
For an increase
of first-stage
vehicle
system weight, there will be no weight changes
on second and third stages,
and for an increase
on second-stage
vehicle system weight, no
weight change is required for third stage.
From equation
(2-7):
(1) Growth factor of second stage against
vehicle system weight at second-stage
ignition =
Vehicle

(a)

system

First-stage

takeoff

payload

weight
weight

(2) Growth factor of second


vehicle system takeoff

weight

at second-stage
ignition
7500
3
Sec'-ond-stag------_
payl----oa--d
wei--_ht =2_
= .41
(2) Growth factor of third stage against
vehicle system weight at second-stage
ignition =
Vehicle system
at second-stage
Third-stage

weight
ignition

payload

stage against
weight =

weight-

7500
-10.72
700

Vehicle system weight


at third-stage
ignition
Third-stage

_^
=gu

(3) Growth factor of third stage against


vehicle system takeoff weight =

Vehicle system takeoff weight


Third-stage
payload weight

system

(3) Growth factor of third stage against


vehicle system weight at third-stage
ignition =

44000
=_=5.86
7500

Vehicle system takeoff weight


44000
Second-stage
payload weight = _

41

=44 000 = 62.9


700

Therefore:
For each pound increase
of first-stage
enginesystem weight, the increase
on vehicle system takeoff weight = 5.86 pounds
For each pound increase
of second-stage
engine-system
weight, the increase
on vehicle
system takeoff weight = 20 pounds

payload

2200
-_=3.14
weight700

Therefore:
For each pound increase
of second-stage
engine system weight, the increase
on vehicle
system weight at second-stage
ignition = 3.41
pounds
For each pound increase
of third-stage
engine
system weight, the increase
on vehicle system weight at second-stage
ignition = 10.72
pounds, and the increase
on vehicle system
weight at third-stage
ignition = 3.14 pounds
The correctness
of results
can be checked by
recombining
the individual
stage growth factors
to obtain the growth factor for the entire vehicle
system:
3.14 3.41 5.86 = 62.9

42

DESIGN

Envelope

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

(Size)

The linear dimensions


of liquid propellant
rocket engines require relatively
elaborate
description
and frequently
cannot be made clear
without a drawing.
In those cases where only
approximate
values are required for comparison
or for overall estimates,
the term "envelope"
is
preferred.
For instance,
definition
of a hypothetical
smallest
cylinder,
cube, or sphere into
which the engine would fit conveys a good feeling of engine size or bulkiness.
Obviously,
engine size directly affects engine
weight, the importance
of which was emphasized
above (fig. 2-4). Aside from the engine itself,
mnnerous other areas are directly affected
by
increasing
engine size:
(1) The vehicle structure,
which becomes
heavier, especially
with upper stages.
Engine size directly affects the size and
thus weight of the aft end and/or interstage structure.
(2} Handling equipment
and procedures
become more costly
(3) Servicing
becomes more difficult
(4) Manufacturing
machinery
becomes larger
(5) Storage and transportation
means become
more bulky
In several of these areas, there is a definite
upper limit, such
ances on bridges
machine tools.

as railroad tunnel
and underpasses,

sizes, clearand available

The selection
of the thrust-chamber
expansionarea ratio has a very pronounced
effect on engine
envelope.
When optimizing
the thrust chamber
expansion
area ratio, which is also influenced
by
performance,
weight, pressure
drop, heat transfer, and other considerations,
its effect on envelope, and thus on other vehicle systems,
must
be considered
(section
10.9).

Reliability
The subject of reliability
has become almost
a branch of science
by itself.
In addition to the
designer,
to the development
engineer,
and to
the user, mathematicians,
statisticians,
and
"human factor" and "man rating" specialists
are
involved.
Numerous books have been written on
the subject
and manufacturers
maintain
entire
g['oups to predict, monitor, tabulate,
and evaluate

--..__

_.

ROCKET

ENGINES

the reliability
of their products.
This emphasis
on reliability
is well justified
and is of particular significance
to rocket engines.
The advent
of manned space flight has placed even greater
emphasis
on rocket-engine
reliability.
Reliability
may be defined as the capability
of the engine to perform according
to specifications, whenever "the button is pushed."
The
degree to which this is met can be expressed
in
figures and graphs.
If the evaluation
is made
following a test series,
reliability
can be simply
expressed
as the ratio of success
to failure,
say
98 percent (2 failures
and 98 successes
in 100
runs).
As there is no guarantee,
however, that
the system under test will perform identically
in
subsequent
tests, reliability
predictions
are
made, the accuracy
("confidence
level") of which
increases
with the amount of previous information available.
The interrelation
of reliability
and its confidence
level is something the statisticians have much to say and write about.
What can the rocket engine designer do to
achieve the highest possible
reliability,
as early
as possible?
Below are compiled a few pointers
and thoughts which have proven valuable,
not
only in rocket engine design.
They will be followed by specific
details
for the implementation
of a reliability-assurance
program.
First of all, painstaking
execution of all calculations
and drawings that are part of a given
design is an obvious requirement.
This includes
the thorough study of previous experience,
one's
own as well as that of others;
familiarity
with
and correct application
of accepted
and proven
design standards
and procedures;
clearly written
statements
and instructions;
clear line drawings.
It cannot be overemphasized:
it pays to
spend that extra hour in carefully
checking repeatedly every detail of a design and its contemplated mode of operation,
before its commitment
to manufacture
and subsequent
use.
Neglectmay
have to be paid for by many months of toilsome,
tearful,
embarrassed
"corrective
action,"
often
causing losses of hundreds
of thousands,
even
millions of dollars.
When making these checks,
the most pessimistic
assumptions
of what someone else may do wrong during manufacture,
assembly
and use, are not out of place.
The designer
should not rely solely on his
own judgement.
Careful and independent
checking of all calculations
and designs by superiors

--

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

43

and by independent
checkers
is important.
Early
availability
of a wooden (or "soft") mockup of
the engine under design will be an invaluable
tool to avoid costly errors that subsequently
may
seriously
affect schedules
and reliability.
Specific recommendations
for design and checking
techniques
will be made in section 2.2.

several years, may elapse


between
final use.
Much can happen during
For instance,
changes of plans for
may have made another thrust level
able.
In this case, the adjustment
orifices,
in particular
its verification,
major operation.
While the omission

"Reliability"
is sometimes
treated as being
synonymous
with "simplicity."
Undeniably,
simplicity
of a design contributes
significantly
to increased
reliability.
Parts which do not fulfill a truly useful purpose should be omitted.
This may include many of the so-called
safety
features
and interlocking
devices,
which often
cause more trouble than they prevent.
Early
designs
of liquid-propellant
rocket engines have
indeed frequently
suffered from such an overdose
of sophistication
and safety devices.
Many of
the more recent designs
have been substantially
improved in this area, to a point where caution
must be exercised
not to overshoot
the target and
not to lose that flexibility
which only liquidpropellant
systems
can provide, as compared to
solid-propellant
systems.
Simplifications,
like
all other design features,
must be carefully
planned and evaluated.
Simplification
by elimination of a useful component
must not become an
excuse for failure to improve that component
if
its absence could severely
penalize
other subsystems,
or maintenance
and servicing
procedures.

tegic regulator
was indeed an engine simplification, for the vehicle system it turned out to be a
complication.
The point here again is; the careful evaluation
of a planned omission
must consider all aspects,
including
changes
of plans.

For instance,
to avoid a troublesome
sealed
connection
it may be decided to omit flanges and
seals and to weld it. However, if one of the
lines thus connected
were inadvertently
pinched
in the field, removal of the entire engine from a
vehicle under preparation
for launch would become necessary.
Thus, a simple replacement
may be magmfied into a major operation.
To be
sure, welding or preferably
brazing may indeed
be the best solution
for many problem connections.
The point is, this will not be true for all
connections.
Careful analysis
of all aspects
including
handling and in particular
mishandling
by the user, is necessary.
In another example, tests may have shown
that an engine could readily be set up and calibrated to specifications
by means of orifices,
eliminating
previously-used
regulators.
Engines
are delivered
accordingly.
With rocket engines,
it is entirely normal that many months, if not

Reliability

delivery
and
this period.
the mission
more desirby means of
becomes
a
of a stra-

Assurance

The emphasis
on reliability
must not remain
an empty slogan.
Fortunately,
implements
are
available
to the rocket engine designer
which
can assist him effectively
to achieve the highest
degree of reliability.
One of these, an effective
failure reporting and correction
system, will be
discussed
in section
2.2. Equally,
if not more
important,
is a most effective
failure prevention
system.
The numerous activities
contributing
to
the latter may all be considered
part of a reliability assurance
program.
The quality of design, without question,
is the program's
foundation upon which all subsequent
phases rest. The
characteristics
of a reliability-assurance
program, then is that its most significant
steps
(analyses,
design reviews,
design improvements)
are taken before the design of a component
is
finalized;
before the development
test program
is initiated;
and again before the first vehicle is
committed to launch.

Definitions
The definitions

used

in rocket

vehicle

reli-

ability assurance
programs vary widely with
individual
preferences,
with the object under
design and development,
and with the missions
contemplated.
The definitions
given below are
typical,
have been used in actual rocket engine
and vehicle programs, and can be readily adapted
to others.
For the sake of clarity, irrelevant
jargon and detail have been omitted.

Reliability
The probability

that

a part or system

will

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

44

function properly and if necessary


under rated operating
conditions,
specified
load and time limits.

Mission

repeatedly
within the

Success

Completion
of the rocket vehicle mission
objectives
within specified
tolerances.
All subsystems,
including
the engine, contribute
to the
success.
It is an inherent characteristic
of
mission-success
analysis
and assurance
that
they anticipate
the probability
of certain part and
subsystem
malfunctions,
offsetting
them with
appropriate
countermeasures
(such as redundancies, emergency power sources,
power and propellant reserves,
and others).

Mission

Failure

Failure of the rocket vehicle to complete the


mission objectives.
Mission failures
can be
classified
as: a) Catastrophic,
b) Critical,
and
c) Deferred.

Catastrophic
A failure

in which

automatically

Thus, man-ratedreliability
must be higherthan
mission reliability.
For instance,
overall vehicle
reliability
to achieve mission
success
may be
95 percent.
By the addition of an escape mechanism, man-rated
reliability
may be increased
to
99.5 percent.
Caution is advised not to become
entirely "wrapped up" in man rating, at the expense of mission reliability.
A single launch of
a man-carrying
space vehicle costs several
hundred million dollars,
all told. Investment
in
means to save the mission as well as the man,
therefore,
appears to be prudent.
Table 2-2
illustrates
this clearly.
For optimum reliability
of spacecraft
and launch vehicle including the
engines, the need for a crew escape system is
minimized.
Both, mission and crew survival are
assured with high reliability.

TABLE

2-2.-Relationship
to Flight

of Vehicle
Safety

Reliability
the time between

the failis less


must be

initiated.

Reliability

Flight safety

Spacecraft and
launch vehicle

Escape system

Probability of
crew survival

0.50
090
0.999

0.998
0.99
0.00

0.999

Failure

A failure in which the time between the failure event and the hazard ranges from 500 milliseconds
to five seconds.
Abort sequence
may be
initiated
automatically
or manually.
Deferred

Design and operationalprovisionsto assure


crew survivaleven in case of mission failure.

Failure

ure event and a subsequent


crew hazard
than 500 milliseconds.
Abort sequence

Critical

Man Rating

Failure

A failure in which the time between the failure event and the hazard is five seconds or
greater.
Action to cope with the failure is deferred to allow analysis
by the pilot or an automatic logic, to decide whether corrective
action
can be taken or an abort sequence
should be
initiated.
Typical example:
shutting
off an
engine with a feathered
propeller
in a four engine
airplane
and reaching destination
safely though
with a delay.
Analogous
provisions
are anticipated for manned rocket flight.

Engine

Out

Design and operational


provisions
to permit
limited or complete mission continuance
in case
one engine fails to fire, or malfunctions
and is
shut down. Possible
only with vehicles
having
engine clusters.
See airplane analogy under
"Deferred
Failure,"
above.

Failure

Mode

The manner in which a part or system malfunctions.


This may be a "short" or "open"
circuit, an incorrectly
"closed"
or "open" valve,
an engine out, or similar malfunction.
Order of Failure
The number of components

in a system

which

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

would have to fail, regardless


of their failure
mode, to cause systems or mission
failure.
First-order
failures are failures
caused by a malfunction of a single component or part. Secondand higher-order
failures
are defined in a like
manner.
Typical example:
a stuck pressurizing
valve causing overpressure
in a vessel would
rupture it only if the safety valve failed to open;
this would be second-order
failure.
However,
continuous
venting of a properly opening vent
valve may prematurely
deplete gas supply.
A
thorough failure-effect
analysis
will reveal all
ramifications.
In the example, depletion
would
not occur instantaneously,
this would be deferred
failure.
The designer
can do something
about it
in advance:
provide an overriding
closing valve
for the pilot, which remains completely
inactive
when not needed, but adds weight.

Failure-Mode-Effect

Analysis

An orderly and qualitative


listing of the
modes in which components
or parts of a system
can fail; the effects of the failures
on the engine's or vehicle's
ability to complete the mission; and the order of the failures.
Such an
analysis
should distinguish
between the prelaunch, launch, and cutoff phases.
Also, all
identified
failures
should be classified
as catastrophic,

Failure

critical,

or deferred.

Mode Cause

Analysis

An analysis
listing all the conceivable
reasons why each mode of failure could occur.
Likewise,
reasons
for each potential
cause not
occurring
should be explained
in detail.

Emergency

Detection

System

(EDS)

The EDS comprises


the electromechanical
devices,
including
sensors and discriminators,
to
detect an imminent malfunction.
Depending
on
the type of failure (catastrophic,
critical or deferred) it may initiate immediate
action, or defer
but store and/or display it in a suitable
manner
(timer; visual gage or light).
Inputs to the EDS
must be analyzed,
selected
and provided by the
designer,
in particular
the engine designer,
at
the outset.

Failure

Modes of Engine

45

Components

The failures
of rocket engine components
may
be attributed
to one or a combination
of several
of the following principal
modes:
(1) Functional
failures
(2) Fatigue
failures
(3) Over-stress
and over-strain
(4) Failures
pertaining
to combustion
devices
(5) Failures
pertaining
to electrical
devices
(6) Manufacturing
and material defects
(7) Unexplained
failures
(8) Human errors

Functional Failures
These are malfunctionsof parts or components due to reasons other than structuralfailures. For instance,an "0" ringmay failto seal
due to impropergroove depth specifiedin the
design. Or, a plunger may freeze in the bore of
a guiding bushing,because of improper surface
finishand/or noncompatibilityof materials. To
minimize possible functionfailuresin the design
of engine components the followingprecautions
are recommended:
(I) Choose proven designs with an established servicerecord.
(2) Use standardmechanical elements (bolts,
nuts, threads,gears, pins, rivets,
springs,seals, tube fittings,
pistons,
keys, shafts,bearings)wherever possible.
(3) Select simple designs, but without impairing flexibility.
In particular,
minimize
the number of moving parts and sealing
surfaces.
(4) Allow adequate
functional
margins in the
design of components
(spring forces,
actuating
powers, supply of lubricants,
supply of coolants).
(5) Subject newly-designed
parts to extensive
functional
testing,
under simulated
working and environmental
conditions,
before
"freezing"
the final configuration.
(6) Provide redundancy.
This is a "buddy
plan":
where one component
would be
sufficient,
two of the same type are
actually
provided.
If one fails, the other
takes over. This can be achieved
in two
ways:
by noncomplex
and by complex
redundancy.
Intelligently
applied,

DESIGN OF LIQUID

4G

redundancy

can

significantly

PROPELLANT

increase

A typical

reliability.
(7)

At all

ROCKET ENGINES

gency

times,

product

pursue

a rigorous

program

of

ment.
failure

Application
mode wh

typical

example,

examples
valves.

function

of identical

depends
upon the
- is to be eliminated.
_ve

are:

figures

dual

2-7 and

(series)

seals,

equip-

failures

load

ably

lower

load

application.

2-8.

type

of mechanical

Other

parallel

than

to resist

PRESSURE
SWITCH :IS I

2-7.-Noncomplex
type

of

ure to close

when

redundancy.

guards

called

through

upon

against

fail-

start
because

depend
surface

at which

upon

the

geometry

conditions.

Any

is

POWE R

Fillet

oil

holes,

ties

are

keyways
all

=1_"I

SWITCH

_ 2

type

of redundancy

closing,

upon

s e tie

i.e.,

guards
closing

against
when

inad-

not

called

to close.)

tool
marks,

or various
itself,
and

neer
Complex

Redundancy

The

original

ponent.

Failure

switching
component,
tained
The

potential

from

the

(e.g.,

to prolonged

area

to the

However,

be undesirable
ment

The
offset

and

problem

equipment

be advantageous
involved

needed.

of sensing

this
when

days

by one

circuits

may

by the
be

standby

rigid

standby

surface

obadditional

circuitry.
merely

subject

com-

times

may
are

to almost

and

fatigue

joints

should

generally

be

it may

subject

to repeated

the

backup

equip-

welding

and

tli_.

7,

-,

design

load

loads.
must

subject

design,
out

for

services,

to castings.
to material

the

Wherever

inspection

be called

engi-

stress

part
In the

joints

of stress

minimized

in the

of foreign

The

preferred

all types
failure.

may be

stamp

to avoid

preferred

are

a great

These

repeated

constructions,

where

design.

contain

inclusions

should

and

operation.

still

effort

of

no shoulders,

cracks.

For

Ductile
materials
to become
brittle.
In welded

failure.

to be free

applications.

finishes.

ject

of fatigue

in a highly-stressed
load

are

irregulari-

discontinuities

as

every

specifications

forgings

shifted

redundancy

mission

to repeated

and

failure-detection

long

com-

advantages

switching

or weeks)

to also

out

an identical

be completely

complexity

ponents.

logic

energize

when

can

carried

sensors,

devices

make

concentrations

function

inherent
such

threads,

surface

identification

quenching

should

small,

raisers.

scratches,

material
matter

it may

concentra-

for fatigue

too

having

stress

will
on

stress

stress

sources

like,

of minute

marks,

or other

may be designed

or the

number

redundancy.

and

similar

irregularities,

grooves
2-8.-Noncomplex

start

part

are

and

potential

a part

geometric

will

of the

point

that

cracks.

crack
notch

apt

will

of these

starting

radii

at or
are

failure

of highest

a potential

Although
SWITCH

a point

a crack
stresses

actual

the

tests
at random.

with

propagation

point

cracks.
SOLENOID
VALVE

gradual

being

tion,

The

with-

possible,

selected

surface

from

is

endurance

samples

there.

of a part

checked

Checking

destructive

common

ability
be

failures

raiser,

to close.)

The

part.

in a single

most

cannot

fatigue

The

paraI1el

redundancy

the

to be greatest

the

failure.
failure

by re-

consider-

failures

are

an outside

result
PRESSURE
SWITCH
= 2

vertent

emer-

switchover

caused

causing

representative

near

fractures

They

fatigue

Most
SOLENOID
VALVE_

POWER

(This

and

at stresses

those

destroying

with

are

applications

particular
For a

however,

Figure

power

sensor

Failures

peated

out

(This

an electric

Redundancy

simultaneous

Figure

is
voltage

circuitry.

Fatigue
The

with

improvement.
Fatigue

Noncomplex

example

battery

prone

are

sub-

concentration

possible,

welded

in the

design

Rigid

procedures

be called

of parts
out

for
in the

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

Over-Stress

vent

and Over-Strain

Failures

Stress analysis
in mechanical
over-stress
and over-strain

design to prewill be dis-

cussed in section 2-4. The interrelationship


stress and reliability
of mechanical
parts is
illustrated
in figure 2-9.

-ID
WORKING

_-_

STRESS

_z
m

RELIABILITY
MARGIN

/-..

of

iV\

I_

of Combustion

47

Devices

Under steady-state
operating
conditions,
combustion devices
in liquid-propellant
rocket engines are exposed to hot gases with temperatures
ranging from 1000 F to 6000 F. The walls of
these
devices
are either made from hightemperature-resisting
(refractory)
materials,
or
are provided with effective
cooling,
through heatabsorbing
effects,
ablative
cooling, propellant
film and/or regenerative
cooling.
Structural
failure may occur because
of erosion,
from wall
temperatures
exceeding
the values assumed during design.
Or failure may occur from a combina-

tion of excessive
temperatures
and pressures.
Under
certain
transient
or
unstable
conditions,
STRESS
such as during engine start or stop, combustion
O,ST.,BOT,ON
instability
or abrupt pressure
surges may occur
and cause a failure.
See chapter IV, "Design of
Thrust Chambers and Combustion
Devices."
DAMAGING

STRESS
Figure 2-9.-Interrelationship
of stress and reliability as related to mechanical parts.
Two stress
levels exist for every part in a
given engine component:
the working stress, and
the damaging stress at which failure occurs.
The
failure may be either a fracture,
or a deformation
beyond allowable
tolerances.
Each of the two
stresses
are mean values of a distribution
about
a mean. The difference
between the working and
the damaging stress mean values is indicative
of
the stress reliability
margin of the part.
The deviations
from the mean working stress
result mainly from variations
in the dimensions
of the part, and from operational
and environmental conditions.
The distribution
about the
mean damaging stress results from variations
in
material properties,
fabrication
processes,
quality
control and maintenance
practices.
The area Pt,
where the two distributions
overlap represents
the probability
of failure,
or unreliability.
Close control of functional
and environmental
loads may decrease
the variation
of the working
stress about the mean. Likewise,
better materials and strict quality control should increase
the damaging-stress
mean value, and decrease
the variation
about the mean.
Thus, the area of
overlap may be substantially
reduced or eliminated, and reliability
increased.

Electflcal

Failures

Although predominantly
an assembly
of mechanical
parts, a modern rocket engine employs
a number of electrical
devices
without which it
cannot function reliably.
Among the electrical
components
used most widely are: power sources
(batteries),
converters
(DC to AC), wires and
harnesses,
connectors,
switches,
relays (electromechanical
and solid-state),
timers, pressure
switches,
diodes,
solenoid
valves,
servomotors
and position
indicators.
All of these devices
are, to various degrees,
potential
sources
of failure,
the consequences
of
which are just as detrimental
as failure of mechanical
parts.
By proper design and assembly
instructions,
and by careful selection
of the
elements,
the designer can forestall
electrical
failures
and thus assure overall systems
reliability.
Most common potential
electrical
failures
which must be prevented
are:
Cold solder spots in connectors,
wirings
and electrical
elements.
They result in often
sporadic discontinuities,
particularly
under
vibration.
Short circuits
in wirings,
connectors
and
other electrical
devices.
This may be due to
poor design, leaving insufficient
separation
between connector
pins, lugs and the like;
excessive
solder;
damaged insulation
due to

48

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

poor harness
installation,
chafing under vibration and poor handling;
overload
and/or overheating in solenoids;
moisture
in connectors.
Fused relay contacts,
due to overload
and/or incorrect
current rating of the elements.
Relay and switch contact loss under vibration.
This is really an electromechanical
malfunction.
It can be prevented
by proper
relay selection,
shockmounting,
orientation
of
installation,
replacement
by solid-state
circuitry where possible.
Power failure resulting
from one or more of
the causes
listed above.
Prevention
means
include emergency
batteries
and overload
switches,
combined with subcircuit
isolation
through diodes.
A liquid-propellant
rocket engine usually includes additional
electrical
elements
as required
for instrumentation
and telemetry.
These may
include instrumentation
power supplies,
end
organs (sensors,
pickups,
thermocouples,
accelerometers,
position
indicators),
signal conditioners (analog-to-digital),
and wiring.
Although, as
a rule, instrumentation
is not required directly
for proper function of the engine system, its failure may indirectly
cause engine malfunction,
by
interference
with engine operation.
For instance,
a pressure
pickup may rupture and cause premature depletion
of a gas supply;
the same
event in the fuel system may cause
an enginecompartment
fire; improper installation
of a
thermocouple
may block a vital lubricant
or other
line.
The engine
instrumentation.
this peripheral
attention.
Manufacturing

designer's
task includes
engine
It is obvious,
therefore,
that
system, too, will require his full

and Material

Defects

Manufacturing
and material defects of engine
component parts directly affect the reliability
of
the components.
These defects
can be prevented
only by strict quality control.
The areas of
quality control may be subdivided
as follows:
(1) Materials
inspection.
The extent of inspection
and testing conducted
with raw
materials
depends upon the nature of the
part for which they will be used.
Inspection
of materials
includes
testing of
their composition,
uniformity,
mechani-

cal properties,
fabrication
and heattreating characteristics,
and possibly
of
other properties
as the application
may
demand.
(2) Traceability.
By the time a materials
defect is detected,
many more parts may
have been made from the same lot or
batch of raw material.
If accurate
records have been kept, for what parts
which numbered material lots have been
used, it will be possible,
without a
"panic,"
to withdraw and replace all
parts made from the faulty lot. The importance of accurate
and complete records is obvious.
(3) Process
inspection.
This refers to all
shop inspections
made of the parts as
they are being processed.
Its purpose
is to check the performance
of the operators and tools or equipment,
and to sort
out faulty parts as soon as errors are
detected.
(4) Salvage.
This includes
the decision
whether defective
materials
or parts can
be corrected
or will be scrapped.
(5) Final inspection.
This is the inspection
of the completed
component parts to insure they are within the limits required
by the design.
(6) Checking of actual service performance.
This includes
investigation
of complaints and studies
of actual service
performance
of the part in the engine
system (see "Failure
Reporting
System").

Unexplained

Failures

From time to time failures


occur which cannot
readily be isolated
as having originated
in a
given component
or part. This may be because
several causes
were present simultaneously
and
could not be separated.
Or instrumentation
was
inadequate,
recording only the ultimate effects
but not the cause.
Or that an incomplete
investigation
was conducted,
maybe in the hope it
would not happen again.
Classification
of a failure as _unexplained"
should never be done as a matter of convenience,
but only as a last resort if the most thorough
investigation
did not establish
a clear cause.
Complete and accurate
records must be kept of

49

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

the details
associated
with the failure.
Through
special statistical
methods it may be possible
to
isolate the cause or causes
at a later date.

mostly known methods and common sense, the


rocket-engine
designer can do much to prevent
human error by the design of his parts and by

Also, special instrumentation


may immediately
be added in the areas of suspected
but unproven
causes.
But the most sophisticated
explanation
of a failure cannot transform it into a success.

mandatory actions during their building,


checking
and handling.
The following are only typical
examples of a probably infinite number of possibilities
of preventing
human error by design.
Clear marking of bolts, lines, connectors,
wires, etc.
Use of dissimilar
connectors,
dissimilar

Human Error
Experience
with early manned rocket flights
has shown that certain functions
could be performed better by trained men than by automatic
devices.
It appears
certain that future spaceflight efforts will continue to employ combinations of automatic
and manual systems,
the ratio
of the two depending
on mission requirements.
Even in those missions
which are unmanned and
therefore
appear to be fully automatic,
man is
still directly involved:
during launch preparations, and through postlaunch
commands for
trajectory-correction
maneuvers,
information
playback,
and similar actions.
We must realistically
recognize
that even a
fully-trained,
and very alert individual
is subject
to error. He may commit an error at a desk while
using a slide rule, or while connecting
a number
of hydraulic lines, or under stress
while pushing
buttons.
The history of rocketry is full of glaring examples.
Whenever it happens, the most
eloquent regrets are probably voiced by the designers of the system involved:
if someone had
not done something to their perfect creation,
it
would have worked faultlessly.
The reaction
is
understandable,
but wrong.
For whatever reason a system failed, it obviously was not perfect.
Its designer did not consider human nature, nonideal
operating conditions, nor emergency
situations.
Clear and
complete drawings,
specifications
and other
written instructions
are important but they will
not prevent,
by themselves,
human errors, because they can be misplaced,
misread,
or not
read at all.
It is not surprising
that the elimination
of
human error, or more positively,
the perfection
of
the integration
of man with the machine, is becoming an independent
branch of engineering.
It
would be beyond the scope of this book to go
into the details
of "Human Engineering"
or
"Human Factors Analysis."
Simply by applying

threads,
a variety
to make incorrect

of keyways,
and the like,
electrical
and mechanical

connections
impossible.
Safety wiring; electrical
interlocks.

and mechanical

Painting
bright red, and/or attaching bright
red streamers
to, auxiliary
devices
which
must be removed before operation.
Storing of components
and systems
which
have successfully
passed
all inspections
and
checkouts,
in locked rooms requiring two different keys from two different
individuals.
Intentional
attempts
at improper handling,
assembly,
checkout
and operation
of components and systems,
to assist
"foolproofing,"
during development.
None of these and numerous
similar steps will
eliminate
human errors completely.
However,
they will substantially
reduce their possibility
and thus contribute
to overall reliability.

Design

Reviews

for Reliability

The reliability
of rocket engines
and their
components
depends on many factors.
Design
reviews are among the most potent methods for
increasing
reliability.
In practice,
a design review is the progressive
evaluation
of a design.
It starts with the preliminary
schematics,
layouts
and specifications
and extends
through the release of all final drawings.
Those conducting
reliability
design reviews
should include:
reliability specialists,
design engineers,
development, test and service
engineers,
and various
specialists
for structures,
materials,
manufacturing, and quality control.
A minimum of three design reviews is recommended for each design:
Preliminary
design review.-This
is preliminary
review of work statements,
basic
concepts,
schematics,
layouts,
and analyses.

5O

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

It determines
development
needs and results
in decisions
for the next design phases.
This
review should uncover misapplications,
critical areas and marginal designs
at an early
stage, when changes
can be effected
without
difficulty.
Critical design review.-This
is the most
important review for decisions
and approvals.
It includes
formal review of all reliability
aspects
of layouts, analyses,
planned development tests and procurement
specifications.
Final design review.-This
is the final
review of overall design layouts,
detail and
assembly
drawings,
analyses,
process
specifications,
and R&D test results,
before production release.
The
(1)
(2)
(3)

reviews should emphasize:


Structural
integrity
Function and performance
Customer (vehicle)
connections
and envelope
(4) Materials
compatibility
and component
interfaces
(5) Produceability
and cost
(6) Reliability
and repeatability:
malfunction
effects

(7) Environment
and servicing
(S) Special requirements
It is highly recommended that the agreed-to
layout bear the approval signatures
of the groups
involved.
A reliability
checklist
tailored to the individual designs
may be used as a guide during the
various design review phases.
The "Design
Check-Off Sheet" shown in section 2-2 may be
used for this purpose.
Design reviews are valuable
and cost-saving
tools for improving reliability.
A well organized
and staffed review group will assure a meaningful review and instigate
effective
recommendations and actions.
Complete documentation
of
all review details
will provide valuable data for
future reference.
Under "Manrating"
the cost of a single launch
was mentioned.
Press releases
give the cost of
a major space program as about 3.5 billion dollars a year-10
millions a day! To save a mission, or just a single day of preparation,
by
improved reliability,
quite clearly,
is worth the
effort.
Likewise,

the loss

of a launch,

or a day in

the program, is very costly indeed.


The rocketengine design can contribute
substantially
to
prevent it.

Cost
Cost considerations
should enter a design at
the very beginning.
Not only from the viewpoint
of competitive
bidding and narrow profit margins
but of available
and/or developed
national
resources
as well.
A major rocket vehicle program
quite possibly
may tax the resources
of certain
materials,
facilities,
and services
to the limit.
Moreover, it should be ascertained
that the program does not rely on facilities,
and on supply
of materials
and of propellants
that may not become available
for several years.
The rocket
engine under design may well be for a project
costing a total of hundreds of millions of dollars.
Savings of even fractions
of a percent can therefore amount to millions of dollars.
Cost, as far as the designer is concerned,
will be affected by the selection
of materials;
by
the machinery required to make the parts;
by the
time and skill required to make them; by the
difficulty
of assembling,
testing,
and servicing
the parts; and last, but not least, by the experience of the people making the design.

Availability(Scheduling)
The best design,the most perfectdevice,may
be useless ifitis not availablewhen needed. In
a way, the design of (inour case) a rocketengine
is a productby itself.Itmust be planned,prepared,and made. Itresultsin physicalproducts:
drawings,writteninstructions,
and procedures,
which allmust be faultlessand availablewhen
needed. Delays in the releaseof drawings can
become very costlyindeed. In a manufacturer's
overall plan of action, the design will be timed
and synchronized
with other activities.
If the
drawings are not available
on schedule,
sizable
portions of a machine shop or an assembly
plant
may be forced to stand idle.

2.2 THE

IMPORTANCE

OF

DESIGN

QUALITY

Even today many people still regard the


design of technical
objects
as not much more
than the act of putting pencil lines on large

ROCKET

pieces

of paper.

of design
not

even

occupy

be completely
ideas

and

their

Of course,

the

broader.

Many

a drawing

board,

is much

devoted

to the

solutions,

validity,

to the

or to the

of the

successful

designers

their

valuable

board,

however
tion

most

advanced

since

planning,
team.

their

their

concept

a designer
he

direction,

tool

of

end

in the

release.

organiza-

will

design.

stand

to state

or fall

Obviously,

tested,

or used

specified

first

With

until

and

how

unless

a completed
of instructions

to follow.

For

instance,

end product
which

well

known,

grind
the

yet

sometimes

of a project.
design

the

their

and

chain
This

be

drawings

are

diversified

and

All

forgotten

in tim daily

it suffice

this

to state

are

is

that

principal

attempts

special

detailed

"set
from

which

built

and

prepared

are

tail,

based

an

devoted

of

of liquid
There

_ to the

engine

could
The
state

propellant

are

should

consider

times,

for overall

bility,

and

areas

early

and

increase

SO

chap-

technical

de-

of the

art

2.3

keep

the

in mind

of cost.

tions

Experience,

(2)

Adequate

receiving

inspection

(3)

Clear

complete

instructions

and

spection
(4)

Full

(5)

Use

and

use

of the

in-plant

parts

Availability
tive

at all

cussed.

and

reliathese

reputation

the

may

occur

for in-

Last,

and

tion

of others:

young

from

can

not

least,

and
the

and

of an effeccorrection

ject

experience,

engine

(usually

techniques
design.

the

scope
their

and

as

The

which

covering

Many

are

of these

used

reader
has

a
sub-

to his

specific
in liquid

techniques

The

already

this

slanted
are

their

and

student

is

to

release.

employer

following
they

book
genera-

book

future

voluminous)
The

of this
of the
breakdown,

this

knows.
the

they
The

to proceed,

for their

uses

that

as

results.

system

who

exhaustively,
needs.

how

dis-

procedures

follow.

mechanics

the

in industry,

specific

to start,

drawings,

and

now

expected

detailed

considerabeen

examples

will

be beyond

the

be assured

manual

application

the

basic

design

of typical

engineer,

sign
but

used,

DESIGN

have

engine

where

are

of design

works
designs,

detailed

are

what

execution,

system
(7)

of

AND

design

in practice

It would

to subsystems
analysis

materials

to be performed,

important

engine

treatment

describe

control

existing

tests

numerous

The

and

products

out-of-plant

and

failure

their

experience

of suitable

small
(6)

and

and

quality

specifications,

ANALYSIS

for rocket

questions
(1)

and

must

on.

So far,
designer

are:

subcontractors

change

LAYOUT

in the

Among

reliability,

implementation

if the

processes,

purchased,

SYSTEMS

engines.
which

of quality

for reduction

monitor

to

changes;

be actually

rocket

numerous

parts

fore-

following

necessary

latest

effort

proposed

number,

all manufacturing

at a

shop

de-

field,

often
based
on applicable
Government
specifications,
to establish
the exact
execution
of

of the

to arrive

for test.
to the

on the

some

required

of instructions

man,
ters

to supply

tools

projectwide

Specifications.-Detailed

links

in the

action.

and

serial

A sample
to the

product

minimize

to establish

for

systems,

vehicle.

feedback

control.-A

by engine
be made.

for

changes

affected

corrective

and

before

page.

sheets.-Used

the

of his

sys-

angles,

of design

reports.-The

scrutinize

design

on next

checkoff

of failures

Change

only

sheet

all potentially

for immediate

actions

release.

designer

signer

in a project.
book

necessary

field

May

the

can

it.

sample

the user and


shown
below.

Failure

operate

for shop

extensive,

preceded

been

and

design

final

of an

it has

on

including
sheet
is

the

are:
sheets

his

imaginable

evaluation

effects

of its

be built,

test,

a set

a technical

quality

can

to build,

in mind,

effort

that
the

no device

considered
the

this

with

all

change

systematic

It is a commonplace
project

See

Design

may be.

to check

from

and

these

sheets.-Checkoff

designer

tematically

available

design

Among

checkoff

the

are

his

it describes.

and

himself.

tools

to optimize

Design

of creation,

capabllltms,

designer

of time-proven

product

force

retain

of the

designer

and
many

always

position

A number
to the

checking

analytical

judgment

may

By contrast,

51

knowledge,

may

of basic

numerical

of a design

most

general

creation

integration

ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

derocket
will

be

52

DESIGN

LIQUID

OF

LIQUID

ROCKET

PROPELLANT

ENGINE

ROCKET

DESIGN

CHECK-OFF

ENGINES

SHEET

Project:
Subsystem:

Supervisor:
Answer

1. Have designs
for similar
earlier
projects
thoroughly
reviewed
and understood?
2.

Have principal
contacted?

3.. Has

a list

participants
m those
Has their advice
been

been

prepared

were encountered
including
their

Has the new engine


system
been reviewed
for hidden

5.

Has the number


been reduced
bility

and

tlas a thorough
(Assessment
ponent
system.
vehicle

7.

Have

all

for maximum

malfunction
of malfunction

existing

detail

inclusion

which
projects,

and their complexity


without
loss in flexi-

minimum

reliability?

of moving

analysis
effects

on all other parts


Include
external
and GSE.)

possible

been

schematic
diagram
"won't
works?"

serviceability,
has

projects
solicited?

related

of components
to a minimum,

(In particular:
achieved?)

been

of all problems

in previous,
solutions?

parts

been

been made?
of each com-

and on the complete


systems,
such as the

designs

and'or

been

reviewed

adaptation

for

to the

new

design?
8.

Have

standard

parts

permissible:

been

used

wherever

or as prescribed

possible;

by customer

specifications?
9.

Has the number


connections")

of external
been held

10.

tlas the locatmn


and type
been chosen
in the best

11.

Has

Has

he been
the

been

need
reduced

Are

there

13.

reasons

(Salt

temperature,
Has

equipment
by number

it support

is different

Have all environmental


ered,
including
those
occur?

14

support

(GSE)
as

well

as

'_

good

during
R&D
the field?

of customer
connections
interest
of the customer?

to a minimum,

by complexity
12

connections
("customer
to a minimum?

consulted?
for ground

resistance

considered?

spray,

eqmpment

from the

conditions
not likely
sand,

one

used

supplied

to

been considbut possible

fungus,

to

humidity,

etc.)
to vibration
In all

and

planes?

shock

effects

Including

been

improper

handling?
15.

Have

acceleration

planes?

effects

& initials

of demgner

Item

been

considered?

In all

Answer
Date

& initials

of supervisor

Date

ROCKET

LIQUID

ROCKET

ENGINE

ENGINE

DESIGN

DESIGN

CHECK-OFF

Answer
Item

minimum?

(Chromium,

Molybdenum,

Tungsten,

Cobalt, etc.?)
17. Has it been made absolutely certain that no
cheaper materials will do?
18. Has it been assured that no electrolytic action can
occur due to attachment of dissimilar metals?
19. Can the engines be gimbaled according to specifications?
20. Can the engine be clustered, if necessary?
21. Can the engine be attached to air frames other than
the one presently contemplated?
22. Has it been confirmed that all parts can be made?
23. Has it been confirmed that there is no cheaper way
of making these parts?
24. Can the parts readily be assembled,
mum

with a mini-

of special tools?

25. Has it been made impossible to incorrectly assemble and install any part? (Or incorrectly reassemble and reinstallthem in the field?)
26. Will all parts requiring service be readily
accessible, prior to and following mating of the
engine with the vehicle?
27. Have all markings
correctly?

been called out completely and

28. Do instructions for inspection and quality control


leave no gap?
29. Has it been ascertained that (without penalty) the
design cannot save further weight?
30. Is the envelope the smallest possible?
31. Can the system be drained, readily and completely?
(Avoidance of traps, low spots, etc.)
32. Have engine propellant feed system components,
including pumps and thrust chamber been designed
for minimum
trapped
propellants
after
cutoff?
33.

Has
the

the

significance

where
34.

Can

(Minimum
purchasing

wet

weight)

department
of mandatory

been

appraised

(proven)

sources,

applicable?

it be transported?

In one

or several

pieces?

of

SHEET--Continued

& initials

of designer

16. Has the use of criticalmaterials been held to a

53

IMPLEMENTS

Answer
Date

& initials

of supervisor

Date

54

DESIGN

LIQUID

OF LIQUID

ROCKET

PROPELLANT

ENGINE

DESIGN

ROCKET

CHANGE

ENGINES

CHECK-OFF

SHEET

Project:
Change

No.:

Supervisor:

I Initials of designer

Item
Assuming
of this

that

change

it has

is fully

been

ascertained

understood

1. Interchangeability

of changed

2,.

to other

"Chain

Reaction"

cluding

vehicle,

test

3.

Engine

start

and

4.

Engine

performance,

Conformance

6.

Weight,

7.

Reliability.

8.

Instrumentation,

9.

Packaging,

10.

Development

11.

Human

shipping,
and

factors:

persons

that

a design

change

must

of supervisor

be made,

check

that

Date
the

effect

areas:

and

systems,

and

in-

GSE.

gain

factors.

specifications.

e.g.,

data

itg)

following

l Initials

sequence,

all

envelope,

(has

in the

Date

parts

parts

including

with

doubt

implemented

facilities,

stop

beyond

and

moments

recording,

of inertia,

loads

telemetry.

storage.

qualification.
skills,

training,

notification

of

concerned.

12.

Field

13

Handbooks

servme

equipment

14.

Logistics

15.

Manufacturing

16.

Purchased

t7.

Subcontractor-supplied

18.

Funding.

19

Agreed-to

20.

Customer

and

other

(spare

and
user

parts
tooling

procedures

documents.

maintenance).
and

processes.

materials.

dehvery
notification

parrs.

dates.
and

approval.

applied in subsequent
chapters,
in connection
with the discussion
and demonstration
of various

nent

in relation

to the other

as a function

of time

component designs.
The activities
discussed
below are not clearly
separated
phases,
following one another in a
rigid sequence.
Rather, they overlap,
frequently
occur in parallel,
and are tightly interwoven.
One of the first drawings the liquid-rocket
designer will most likely prepare is a schematic
diagram of the engine system.
A typical
example
is shown in figure 2-10. This diagram shows
how the principal
components
are linked together.
The schematic
may be accompanied
by a sequence
diagram, showing the operation
of each compo-

Concurrently,
analyses
will have been conducted to establish
preliminary
engine performance parameters
and operating
characteristics,
as well as individual
component
configurations
and operating principles.
A typical example of a
performance
diagram is shown in figure 3-1.
Engine and component
starting
and operating
characteristics
can be analytically
predicted
with a high degree of accuracy by computers.
Thus, important knowledge required for optimum
design is obtained long before the part is actually
built and tested.
Savings in time and cost are

(fig. 2-11).

_am.- ----

_ m,,L_

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

:-_uuto

_,Jeu _hJEct1_m

Figure

_ecK

',

2-10.-Typical

_,_c_

55

AOOBTI_

engine

system

START

schematic

diagram.

CUTOFF

I: ....

SECONDS

_dECONDS

Figure

2-I l.-Typical

engine

substantial.
These analyses
and computer programs will draw heavily upon experience
with
earlier systems and on advanced
design studies.
Once _he prototype
schematic
diagram is considered completed,
and performance
parameters
have been established
by the analysis,
the first
actual "engine picture"
will be drawn.
This very
likely will be a general,
in-scale
preliminary
layout of the engine system and components.
A
typical example of an engine system preliminary
layout is shown in figure 3-2.
Through continued
analyses,
calculations,
consultations,
and joint reviews by all participants, the layout will gradually
take final shape.
In this process,
nothing should be left to chance.

system

sequence

diagram.

Consultations
with specialists
in their fields and
rigorous
calculations
doublechecked
for accuracy
and presented
in a readily understood
form, will
contribute
materially.
Layout drawings
should
be made accurately
and to true scale.
In this
manner, all components
of the engine systemwill
have been designed
and optimized
for one
another,
rather than "hung on a mounting frame
in Christmas-tree
fashion."
Before working drawings are made from the
layouts,
they should again be reviewed,
and
revised as necessary,
taking into consideration
all design aspects,
the basic considerations,
and
the reliability
assurance
aspects,
which were
discussed
earlier.

56

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

2.4

call

STRESS

ANALYSIS

Stringent

reliability

for rigorous

during

the

nents.

and

which

strength

with

in every

with

based

similar

satisfactory

on

of the
together

stress

analyses:
and

the

of the

materials

stress
true

as with
further

be obtained.

desired,
analysis

stresses

is a discussion
sis enumerated

The

the

more

must
This

The

requires

of stress,

residual

other

dynamic
influences

within
of the
above.

the

member.

(6)

Load

four

steps

of

the

design
the

uncertainty
the

following

on

thermal
creep

analy-

margin
limit

expected

yield

sis,

the

the

design

load,

below.

smaller
limit

loads

and

The
the
loads

be

load.

because

ultimate

and

accurate
margin

damaging

if

larger
The

smaller

include:

more

allowable

of

of safety
load

involved

loads

of

effects:

working
should

inaccuracy

shape
stress

concentration

a proper

in turn

of

reduction

or corrosion
stress

nature

embrittlement

a design

limit

defined

of

stresses,

and

with

Damaging

are

of time

to the

have

analyses.
load,

loads

number

respect

damaging
and

unit

total

of geometry

reaction

load

calculated

mini-

concen-

per

low-temperature

maximum
limit

the

or varying

effects:

Chemical

will

of a con-

and

respect
to the
or brittle

with

Temperature

A part
than

strength

inelastic

of stress

effects

it is designed

determine
The

or

effects

with
ductile

embrittlement,

stresses,

which

load

strength,

re-

duration

rate

high-temperature

methods

effects,

envi-

cycles

Load
effects
material:

(7)

the

consideration

of

following

impact,

loads,

a part:
effect
concentration
to

true

and

application:

or uniform;

Vibration

on the

the

shape

of the

and

for repeated

(5)

stressed

the

loads

for repeated

(4)

final

analysis

nearly

indicate

and

maximum

of load

working

their

greater

the

nature

and,

a likely

highly

or

properties

constant,

value

load;

trated

Redesign

stress

of load:

mum value

(8)
such

reactions

size

of working

maximum

stant

of

analyses

the

determination

type

The

en-

in-

depending

mechanical

analysis

The

anticipated

procedure.

if necessary,

members,

and

(1)

part.
stress

above

Chemical

the
as

thermal

is essential:

working

at the

materials

of temperature

part.

effects,

(3)

Applying

Further-

repeated

modes

under

arrive

of the

concentrations,

effects,

the

ronmental

part.
strain

a result

well

tempera-

etc.

of most

the

as

as

Sometimes,

change

material,

signifi-

such

corrosion,

as

in-

forces,

part.

dur-

establish

properties

the

cases,

states

and

and

and

experimental

member.

complex

loads

possible

conditions.

the part
results.

of stress

for

the

stress

of failure,

refine

refinement

can

of ma-

typical

of the

various

dimensions

must

is made

selection

are

within

should

strains

affected

properties

induced

corrosion
of the

are
effects

by temperature.
are

For
and

to be expected

life
from

the

theory

finement

loads,

mechanical

affected

and

by external

reactions,

gradients

loads,

within
the part by the
and from other
effects.

working

lightweight

by environmental

the

stresses,

the

effects

mechanical

In certain

on

First,

Subsequently,

dimensions

determine

the

Select

Apply

layouts,
and

working

steps

failure

duced
loads

(4)

we will

cantly

stresses

be estab-

past.

is made.

with

useful

Evaluate

(3)

which

the

parts

call

effects

Stresses

in mechanical

more,

design,

environmental

jointly.

chemical

and Environmental

for mechanical

and

duced

ture,

excessive,

will

of the

final

vironmental

part

genis to

design

parts

analyses

loads

(2)

Analyze

(2)

goal

deflections,

following

ing

under

requirements

sketch

step

The

in

also

not

engine

of the

of probable

determination

(1)

the

effects,

terials.

The

designs

design

by step,

to fail

but

functional

determination

environmental

manner

of Working Loads

be considered

are

shape

lished,

preliminary

compo-

They

failure.

working

detail.

approximate

the

is likely

sufficient,

In conjunction
the

the

ENGINES

In stress

analyses

of engine

conditions.

to prevent

requirements

stress

predict
part

working

a part

weight

design

analyses

means

design

and
complete

a mechanical

anticipated
erate

Analysis
Effects

mechanical

Stress

ROCKET

than

of the
in stress
endurance

load,

which
the

analy-

between
loads.

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

Below are given typical recommended


criteria
for the working loads, the design limit loads, and
the damaging loads (yield and ultimated loads).
The proof-testing
loads applied to component
design are also defined.
(1) Design limit load:
Select the largest of
the following:
1.2
1.2
1.1
1.0

x load
load
load
x load

(A)
(B)
(C)
(D)

(2-8)

where
Load (A)= Working load under normal steady
operating conditions
Load (B)= Working load under normal transient
operation conditions,
such as during normal
engine start and stop
Load (C)= Working load under occasional
transient operation
condition,
such as load during
irregular starts
Load (D)= Mandatory malfunction
load which
must be taken into account.
For example, in
a clustered
engine configuration,
certain
mount members may carry the greatest
load
when one engine ceases
to fire while the
others are still operating
(engine-out
capability). In certain instances
it is mandatory that
an individual
rocket engine continue to operate when a given component
fails.
If this
causes significant
structural
loads, these are
considered
mandatory malfunction
loads.
(2) Yield
Yield

load = 1.1 design limit load


(2-9)
load is the load which will induce a

stress equal to the yield strength of the


material used under rated ambient conditions.
(3) Ultimate load = 1.5 design limit load (2-10)
Ultimate load is the load which will induce a stress
equal to the ultimate
strength of the material used under rated
ambient conditions.
(4) Proof

test load =
1.0 x design limit load (2-11)
Proof test load is the load which is applied to test the part during the acceptance inspection.
Its value can be adjusted for material properties
if the rated
ambient conditions
cannot be duplicated
for the test.

57

When a part is subjected


to an indefinite
number of cycles during service life, such as in
rotating
machinery,
the endurance
limit of a material should be applied instead
of the ultimate
strength.
The endurance
limit is the stress
which can be repeated
an infinite number of times
without causing failure of the material from progressive
fracture or fatigue.
The endurance
limit
of metals, depending
largely on range of stress
variation,
is as low as between 20 to 60 percent
of their ultimate strength
in tension.
An additional design margin of safety should also be
allowed for dynamic impact loads.
When the
shape of a part changes
abruptly,
as with a
groove, a notch, a hole, or where a small section
joins a large one, the value of unit stress at
points close to the abrupt change or discontinuity
increases
steeply.
The amount of stress
increase generally
ranges from 100 to 300 percent
of the mean stress in the section.

Sample

Calculation

2-2

Tim hydraulic
accumulator
of a large liquidpropellant
rocket engine has the following design
parameters:
(a) Required volume (fluid capacity),
7238 cu in.; (b) working pressure
(load) under
normal steady and transient
operating
conditions,
2000 psia; (c) occasional
surge pressure,
2200
psia; _) mandatory malfunction
pressure,
2450
ps!a; (e) maximum ambient temperature,
300 F;
(f_) material selected,
AISI 4340 H.T.-180.
(Strength at room temperature:
Ultimate,
185000
psi; yield, 170000 psi. Strength at 300 F:
Ultimate,
178000 psi; yield,
150000 psia.)
Determine
the following:
(a_) Lightest
possible configuration
and resulting
dimensions;
_)
required proof test pressure
at room temperature.

Solution
(a) Since a sphere is the lightest
pressure
vessel for a given volume and pressure,
we will
use this configuration.
For a 7238-cu-in.
volume
Required

inside

diameter

of the sphere

=_
= 24 inch

=_/_

7238

58

DESIGN OF LIQUID

From
largest

equation
of the

(2-8),

design

limit

PROPELLANT

pressure

following:

ROCKET ENGINES

a material failure,it may


ponent or system.

The other two-plastic defor-

psia;

mation and fracture-are material failures in-

1.1 x 2200=2420

psia;

fluenced

1.0 2450

psia

environmental

1.2 x 2000

= 2400
= 2450

Selected:
equation

(2-9),

by material properties, load and


conditions, and by the shape of

the part.

2450

psia

yield

pressure

Each
From

cause a part to perform

improperly with resulting malfunction of a com-

of the three failure modes

is character-

= 1.1
ized by certain criteria. For elastic deflection,

2450=

2695

psia
strain is the criterion. For plastic deformation

Thickness

of sphere

and fracture, the criterion is stress. In the proc-

wall

ess of stress analyses, following load determinaYield

pressure

diameter

of sphere

4 x yield

strength

at 300 F

tion, tilepossible modes of failure of the part can


be established in relation to the criteriainduced
by the loads.

2695 x 24
- 4"_ _--_0---_-0 = 0.108

inch

changes.
or from

equation

Failure cause

can thus be deter-

mined, and the failure prevented through design

(2-10):

Some

of the possible combinations

of

failure modes

and criteriaare listed in table 2-3

together

suggested

with

design

remedies.

Ultimate pressure = 1.5 x 2450 = 3675 psia


Selection
Thickness

of sphere
Ultimate

pressure

x diameter

4 ultimate
3675x24
- 4"_. _ 8-'_'0

strength

: 0.124

of sphere

at 300 F

inch

For

use

the

Therefore,
inside

the

diameter

(b)

From

pressure

higher

value

sphere

equation

= 24-inch

wall

(2-11),

thickness.

nominal

proof

test

or ability

of the

loads
determined

such

shear

are

cation
and

: Design

limit

= 2450

as

Proof test pressure


ature conditions:

tables.

pressure

tion

corrected

for room

temper-

most

can

Yield

at room

strength

x 170000=
150 000

2780

ods.

Evaluation

of Failure

Applying
There
elastic
tion,

are

three

deflection,
and

fracture.

basic

types

permanent
Although

of failure
plastic
the

first

modes:

deforma-

sible
those
measurements

type

These

is not

or chemical
in graphs

materials

for a particular

part

loads

may
a way,
alone

cases

with
applica-

the

advances
to the

be of such
that

shape,

design

is difficult

experimental

supplement

recent

be attributed

experimental

Modes

and
appli-

Analyses

in such

can
Many

can

suitable

In such

analyses

psig

torsion,

compiled

tables,

analysis

unreliable.
= 2450

are

these

engine

be loaded

on theoretical

at 300 F

conducted
conceivable

simultaneous

vibration,

Stress

Experimental

may

temperature

all

be selected.

A rocket
strength

with

results

From

properties

tests

compression,

of temperature,
The

to withstand

tests,

often

envi-

the strength

Material

materials

tension,

and

failure,

material

In these

applied,

properties

psia

without

through

dimensions

loads

be known.

specimens.

loads

the

working

selected

must

environment.

at 300F

=2450x

Dimensions

of finalizing
all

conditions

with

inch.

dimensions

x 0.124-inch

Yield

and

process

to endure

ronmental
these

0.124

the

of a part

are
We will

of Materials

wall

and
stress

theoretical

meth-

in stress

development

or

based

analysis
of effective

methods.
loads

simulating

as

closely

as

pos-

expected
to occur
in actual
use,
of strains
and stresses
are made.
can

be applied

to full-size

prototype

(
59

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

TABLE

Failure
1. Elastic

mode

remedies

Within elastic limits:


abrupt
changes of loads; repeated
application
of load at or
near natural frequency

Amplitude, frequency transmissibility,


resonance

Stiffening;
change of natural
frequency;
damping

Loads exceed

Stress;permanentset

Change of dimensions
material

and 'or

Loads may or may not exceed


elastic limits; elevated
temperatures

Stress;slow permanentset

Change of dimensions
material

and or

Load increase beyond yield


point to.ultimate
strength
Load above ultimate strength

Change of dimensions
and 'or
Stress:elongation;area
material
reduction;rupture
Stress;rupturewith little
or Change of dimensions
and. or
material: change of heat
no yield
treatment;
change of contour
Selectionof most duclile
Stress; behavior like brittle
materials
material:increasedmar,'.4'In
of safety
Stress; number of load appli- Change of shape and dimencations
sions: change of material;
increase of endurance lilni[s

b. Unstable

Loads within elastic

limits

equilibrium.

b. Creep ..............
3. Fracture:
a. Overload ...........
b. Brittleness

.........

elastic

limits

c. Impact or shock ....

Abrupt load application


ductile materials

d. Fatigue

Many repeated load applications within elastic limits

............

to scale
or from

models

special

loads
levels,

margin

of safety

include

failure

gages;

quers,

and

part

in the

(3)

OF

stress
and

analy(4)

lac-

engine

most

suitable

part

will

material

be governed

function,

size,

mechanical

stiffness

or rigidity,

ductility,

with

and

shape

properties;
hardness,

particular

of the

part

ratios

available
low

and

liquids
lems.

the

a function

with

of temperature

to fabrication,
castability,
and

and
and

need

drastically

temperatures
As

ratio,

weld-

formability

availability

materials.

have

of expansion,

compatibility

related

temperature
with

proper-

strength-to-weight

machinability,

and

in

conductivity,

forgeability,

Existing
industry
standards

strength,

consideration

as

Cost

Extreme

chemical

resistance,

as

or dimen-

conditions

coefficient

ratio,

(6)

weight

byRequired

heat,

(5)

combined

and
thermal

Considerations
such

of shape

temperature

physical

propellants

optical

models,

Change
sions

engines

density,

corrosion

MATERIALS

of the

rocket

(2)

Required

ability,

selection

The

rocket

Poisson's

paints.

(l)

extreme

liquid

specific

the actual

design.

plastic

of the

ties;

occurs.

mechanical,

photoelastic

mate-

beyond

establish

in experimental

SELECTION
The

real

or to por-

increased

of the

achieved

used

the

to

infrequently,

will

electrical,

strain

for a given

Not

to failure"

tools

from
material,

intentionally

until

"tests

The

parts.

are

These

made

plastic

of full-scale

applied

2.5

Design

Change of shape or dimensions (stiffening);


material
selection

limits

rated

Criteria

Strain; linear or angular displacement (stretch or bending)


Buckling:
ratio of applied
vs. critical load

within elastic

tions

Their

deflection:
Loads

parts,

and

Criteria

a. Stable equilibrium...

2. Plastic deformation:
a. Yield ..............

ses

Modes

Conditions

c. Vibration ...........

rial

2-3.-Failure

Government
corrosion

narrow

encountered

a rule,

the

In particular,

introduced
tensile

conditions

for very-high-strength-to-

with

serious
strength

choice
the

of

extremely

cryogenic

materials
and

probyield

60

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

strength
increase
with decreasing
temperature.
However, ductility
is seriously
affected.
Apart
from selecting
the best alloys for extremely
low
temperatures,
highest purity of the metals is
mandatory.

Resistance
to Chemical Reactions
While low-temperature
hydrogen is considered
essentially
noncorrosive,
gaseous hydrogen forms
hydrides
with some metals,
such as uranium and
titanium.

The increased
usage of liquid hydrogen has
introduced
additional
problems
which further
narrow the selection
of available
materials.

For up-to-date
detail on material properties,
the reader is referred to material handbooks,
industry (material
supplier)
information,
and
Government
publications
(Bureau of Standards).
The principal
groups of materials
used for
liquid rocket engines are as follows:

Specifically
exhibit:

for the LH:

application,

metals

must

Resistance
to Low-Temperature
Embrittlement
This can also be referred to as toughness
or
resistance
to brittle fracture.
Toughness,
in
general,
describes
resistance
to fracture under
shock-type
loads and stresses.
Most rocket
engine parts are exposed to these loads; however, conditions
are much more severe at the
extremely
low liquid-hydrogen
temperatures.
The
tendency of various alloys to brittle failure is
measured experimentally
by the notched/unnotched
tensile
strength ratio.
Typically,
for 2014-T6
aluminum at -423 F, the ratio is 0.94 (longitudinal) and 0.83 (transverse).
Resistance
to Thermal Shock
This is a measure of a material's
ability to
resist weakening
or fracture as a result of sudden heating or cooling.
The following properties
appear to be requirements
for high thermal shock
resistance:
High tensile
strength (Ftu), high
thermal conductivity
(k), low modulus of elasticity (E), and a low coefficient
of thermal expansion (a). The ratio Ftuk/Ea
provides
a relative
measure of thermal shock resistance
for comparison of different
5 to 8 for stainless
2014-T6 aluminum.

metals.
Typical
values
steel and 40 to 48 for

are

Resistance
to Hydrogen Embrittlement
Certain metals, such as steels and titanium
alloys, have a tendency
to embrittlement
in a
hydrogen atmosphere.
This tendency
is greatest
in the intermediate-temperature
range, but disappears at low and high temperatures,
The
effect is often delayed until a critical hydrogen
concentration
in the metal is reached when
cracks start to appear, as a result of a marked
decrease
in ductility.
Also, the embrittlement
effect decreases
with increasing
strain in the
metal.
Heat-treated
steels
are more susceptible
to it than annealed
ones.

Low-Alloy

Steels

Uses for rocket engine components


include
pins, bolts, shafts,
brackets,
mounts, thrust
chamber structure
members, ducts, injector bodies, and certain pressure
vessels.
The standard
grades AISI 4130, AISI 4140, AISI 4340, MAS
6434 are prominent in this group of steels.
The low-alloy
steels are normally used in the
temperature
range from -60 F to 600 F. They
are not suitable
for corrosive
environments.
Elevated
temperatures
produce excessive
creep,
thus reducing the strength.
Also, very low temperatures
tend to induce brittleness
in most of
them. An exception
is AMS (SAE 9310).

Austenitic

Stainless

Steels

(3{}0 Series)

Steels in this group possess


the highest corrosion resistance
in the family of stainless
steels
and are highly qualified
for storable liquid
propellant
application.
They are inherently
tough and well adapted for fabrication
by deep
drawing and other similar means.
They can be
welded easily, can be soldered by proper technique, and are well suited for machining
and
forming under normal conditions.
Ordinary sand
castings,
precision
investment
castings,
and
forgings can also be produced from these steels.
They are widely employed in rocket engines
using cryogenic
and storable
propellants.
Parts
such as regenerative-cooled
thrust-chamber
tubes
and manifolds,injectorbodies and domes, valve
poppets and bodies,propellantducts and tanks
are made from these steels.

Martensitic-TypeStainlessSteels(400 Series)
The steelsin thisgroup are hardenable,in

61

ROCKET ENGINE DESIGN IMPLEMENTS

which condition
they exhibit their best mechanical as well as corrosion-resisting
properties.
The thermal conductivity
of these steels
is low
but still the best of the stainless-steel
family.
They are specially
suitable
for hot working or
forging.
Their cold-forming
characteristics
are
fair. They are well suited for most applications
requiring high strength,
hardness,
and resistance
to abrasion,
wet and dry erosion,
and moderate
corrosion.
They are not suitable
for cryogenic
applications,
because
of brittleness
and shock
sensitivity
under these conditions.
They are
used for turbopump ball bearings and shafts,
gears, valve actuators,
and cams.

spinning,
stamping,
and shape bending.
Most of
them are also adaptable
for forging, welding,
brazing,
and soldering.
Aluminum alloys can be
cast by all three common casting methods:
sand,
permanent
mold, and pressure
die casting.
Mechanical
properties
and workability
of aluminum castings
are excellent.
Aluminum alloys are the most widely used
materials
in rocket engine construction
except
where elevated
temperatures
are encountered.
Typical
applications
are valve bodies and poppets, injector domes, propellant
tanks and ducts,
pump housings,
impellers
and inducers,
and
structure
mounts.

SemiausteniticStainlessSteels

Magnesium

The steelsin thisgroup can be formed in the


soft stateand then precipitation
hardened. They
are intended foruse in parts requiringcorrosion
resistance
and high strength
at operating
temperatures up to 800 F, and where such parts may
require welding and soldering
during fabrication.
However, the corrosion resistance
of this type of
steel is not as good as that of the austenitic
stainless
steels.
Rocket engine component
parts, such as thrust chambers,
pump shafts,
levers, brackets,
bellows,
ducts, springs,
clamp
rings, valve poppets,
housings,
and pressure
vessels,
have been made from the steels of this

Magnesium alloys have found many applications in rocket engines and vehicles
because
of
their excellent
strength-to-weight,
fatigue and
stiffness
characteristics.
These alloys are used
to make pump housings,
valve bodies,
and structure mounts and are available
in sheets,
rods,

group.

Alloys

and castings.
Magnesium
sheet alloys can be formed at
elevated
temperatures.
They are also suitable
for various machining
processes.
They can be
joined by fusion and resistance
welding as well
as by adhesive
bonding.
Magnesium alloys can
be cast by all three common casting methods:
sand, permanent mold, and pressure
die casting.
Certain cast alloys can also be welded and heat
treated.

Aluminum Alloys
Pure metallic

aluminum

has a relatively

low

strength.
However, the strength
can be greatly
increased
by alloying aluminum with one or more
metals or metalloids.
This can be accomplished
without affecting
appreciably
the other desirable
properties
of aluminum, such as low weight, corrosion resistance,
ductility,
good thermal and
electric
conductivity.
Wrought alloys of aluminum are generally
of
two types:
one group that can be hardened by
cold-working
only (non-heat-treatable),
such as
1100, 3003, 3004, 5050, and 5052 and a second
group that will respond to both cold-working
and
heat-treatment,
such as 2011, 2014, 2017, 2024,
6061, 6066, and 7075. Wrought-aluminum
alloys
are suitable
for fabrication
processes
such as
machining,
shearing,
drawing, stretch forming,

High-Temperature Nickel-Base

Alloys

The metals included in thisgroup are used


primarilyfortheirstrengthat temperaturesup to
1700 F. The majorityof them contain aluminum
or titaniumas precipitation-hardening
agents and
are vacuum melted. Their resistanceto oxidationand corrosionis excellent. These alloys
have found wide applicationin rocket engine
components such as: turbinehousings, wheels,
and blades; thrustchamber tubes and injectors;
gas generators;high-temperaturegas ducts,
bolts,and fasteners.

Special

Alloys

The ever-present

extreme

temperature

condi-

62

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

tions in liquid rockets calls


intensive
materials
research,
the advent of liquid hydrogen
tion to the metals discussed
paragraphs,
other metals and
increasing
attention.
Among

for continued
and
particularly
with
systems.
In addiin the preceding
alloys are receiving
these are:

Copper base a11oys.-These


metals exhibit
excellent
ductility
and toughness
at very low
temperatures
Typical representatives
are
Berylco-10,
-25 alloys, and Fe-Si bronze.
Cobalt base a11oys.-The
properties
of
these metals,
such as Haynes-25,
are similar
to those of the nickel alloys.
Tantalum.-Tantalum,
when pure, has good
properties
at both low and elevated
temperatures.

ered

Columbium.-This
for cryogenic

metal has been considapplication,


but is liable

to become embrittled
at very low temperatures.
Titanium-base
alloys.-These
alloys have
attracted
considerable
attention
because
of
their
larly

high strength-to-density
at very low temperatures.

Nonmetallic

ratios,

particu-

Materials

For gaskets,
seals, lubricants,
thread compounds, and the like, liquid rocket engines require compatible
nonmetallic
materials.
A great
variety of commercial
products
is available.
In advanced LOX-pump designs,
as well as in
liquid-hydrogen
pumps, the pumped fluid is used
as the lubricant.

Chapter
Introduction
3.1

to

APPROACH

lant

It is a major
the

student

industry
tems

with

tively,

sample

feeling

subsystems,
space

engines

design.

rocket

quent

As

most
will

vehicle,

the

entire

space

discussed

thus

will

"Alpha"

it is assumed

to be composed

A-l,

and

the

major
The

though

parameters
Alpha

not

tions

and

designs

combination

stage

to permit

for a number

to determine

what

would

if stages

same

and

3-1

is

lists

has

3.1.-4-Stage

Space

Alpha

A-1
A-2
A-3
A-4

.............
.............
.............
.............

a Consisting
load.

Stage
thrust,
lb

Number
of
engines

3000000
600000
48000
15000

4
4
3
2

of stages

, Engine
thrust,
lb
750000
150000
16000
7500

to Earth.

The

be as

to 300-nautical-mite

tude

and

Stage

inject

A-3:

into

Earth

Accelerate

into

to gather
staging

follows:

to 250000-foot

altitude.

to escape

a translunar

alti-

parking

orbit.
velocity

and

trajectory.

A-4:

First

start:

Deceleration

soft

Moon

Second

start:

landing

for lunar
of scientific

Moon

takeoff

main

powerplant,

orbit
payload

for return

to

Earth
In addition
require

to its

very-low-thrust

stage

A-4

attitude-control

jets.
Even

if designed

a vehicle

Propellant

LO2/RP-1
LO2/LH 2
LF2/LH 2
N204/N2H 4

3 and 4, and of the mission

of an unMoon

Boost

calcula-

Takeoff weight, 2 100 000 lb;


Payload a for 300-n.mi. orbit. 109 500 lb.

Stage

then

landing
on the

Boost

and

Vehicle

them

mis-

a "primary

A-2:

will
TABLE

return

and

thrust.

a specific

However,

be the

design

A-3

of restart

nominal

payload

to use

what

capable

A-I:

Stage

propel-

one,

vehicle

for it could

may

were
or,

to suggest

Alpha

and

A-3

if stages

to 30 percent

by

may wish

parameters

and

Stage

been

of typical

into

the

chosen

student

Stage

instance,

sample

A-2

and

designs
the

be obtained

scientific

samples

the

or to

it interesting

combination;

intended

for the

student

engine-design

combined

inject

realistic,

For

would

throttling

sion

the

instance,

thrust

combinations

may find

to modify

propellant

were

vehicle.

optimized.

propellant
for each

For

of four

Table

Alpha

combination

necessarily

a different
chosen

of the

vehicle

A-4.

instructive

sequence

through-

book

authors.l
result

and

reasons,
fewer

In fact,

this

the

manned
as-

of parts,

and

the

systems,

for logistics

use

using

mission"

of reference,

stages:

A-3,

of

of that

the

be chosen.

It is not

sample

appear

be called

would

or

supporting
will

for

in subse-

vehicle:

A-2,

their

subsystems

simplicity

multiple

A-4

prepared

engines

permit

parameters

to existing

various

For

vehicle

and

are

of the

made

multistage

the

which

major
were

especially

be for the

book.

of reala good

between

related

engines

calculations

a set

calculations

not

feel

feed

In practice

teacher

effec-

calculations

were

are

chapters,

sumed

than

by

sys-

authors

To promote

These

engines.

liquid

better

used

engine

subject

of a hypothetical

and

planned

The

for this

principal

designs

book

techniques

Calculations

combinations,

levels.

to familiarize

rocket

interrelationship

vehicle.

this

detailed

serves

the

associated

book

propellant

calculations.

for the

for the

of this

a feeling

nothing

istic

the

the

component

to convey

out

goal

in liquid
and

that

Sample

III

pay-

for a given

combination

retains

"primary
a certain

mission,"
degree

of

t Several good books on astronautics


and space
dynamics
are available
from which student and teacher
may gather mission
data for their own engine selection _tnd design.
Among them is a little book by Dr.
Wernher yon Braun, "The Mars Project"
(University
of
Illinois,
Urbana,
1962, $0.95).
Most of the calculations in this book were made as early as 1948. yet are
still fundamentally
applicable.
They appear ideally
suited for the reader to design his own up-to-date
engine system
for the manned Mars mission described,
for which all necessary
vehicle
data are presented.
63

64

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

flexibility.
Within the limits of existing propellant tank configurations,
the following principal
possibilities
of modification
exist:
Omission of the upper two stages,
for
Earth-orbital
tankers,
shuttle vehicles,
spacestation assembly,
and supply ships.
Omission of stage A-4, for unmanned deep
space probe assignments,
with no return intended.
Off-nominal
tanking of one or more stages.
This may yield some overall performance
gains for special missions.
It is emphatically
not intended to say that the
stated modifications
can be made a few days
before launch.
Rather, the stages and certain of
their subsystems,
in particular
the engines,
should be regarded
as building blocks.
Their
availability
can permit meeting a new requirement within, for example, a year, as compared to
several years when "starting
from scratch."
In
such ways, substantial
gains have been obtained
in practice.
The earlier Thor, and the Redstone
and Atlas Mercury boosters
are well-known
such
cases.
Brief mention should be made here of a special type of system:
experimental
engine systems, sometimes
referred to as breadboard
engines.
Because
of time and fund limitations,
the
design and development
of liquid rocket engines
for a given mission rarely permit the investigation of novel ideas and principles.
New ideas
must then be tried out independently,
detached
from rigid schedules.
Here the test effort can be
conducted
with full awareness
that many of the
principles
under investigation
will not "make the
grade."
However, while those that succeed can
be applied to advanced
operational
systems,
the
eliminated
marginal ones are just as valuable, as
they were early prevented
from finding their way
into operational
engines.
If experimentally
verified advances
are selected
for operational
use
with strong emphasis
on vehicle application,
true progress will have been made.
The major
U.S. liquid propellant
engine manufacturers
have
been conducting
experimental
engine programs
with excellent
results
for a number of years.
The reader will now be acquainted
with some
of the characteristics
of the engines which have
been selected
for the different
stages of the
Alpha vehicle.
While discussing
and implementing these in greater detail in subsequent
chap-

ters, and through calculations


and layouts, this
summarizing
description
can serve as a guide
and reference,
throughout the book.
3.2

A-I STAGE

ENGINE

Four engines of 750 000-pound thrust each


were selected
for a combined thrust of 3 million
pounds (3000K), as a compromise
between number of engine systems,
and thus complexity
on
one hand, and flexibility
on the other.
Flexibility is offered through the possibility
of including engine-out
capabilities;
of using existing
smaller systems or designs;
and for guidance
and packaging
considerations.
The propellant
combination
of liquid oxygen and
kerosene
type RP-I fuel was selected
for the A-I
engine.
The selection
was guided by the consideration
that high performance
is not as critical for first booster stages as it is for upper
stages.
Both propellants
are abundantly
available and comparatively
inexpensive.
The fluids
and their combustion
products
are "docile";
their
corrosivity
is nil. Both fluids are relatively
dense.
Liquid propellant
rocket engine systems
using these propellants
are well developed
and
reliable,
and many "off the shelf" components
and designs are available
for them.

General

Engine

System

Description

The A-1 engine is a single-start,


fixed-thrust,
gimbaled,
bipropellant
system.
The fuel, RP-1,
is also used as the turbopump lubricant
and as
the engine control system actuating
fluid. The
major components
of the A-1 engine are a regeneratively
fuel-cooled,
double-pass,
tubular-wall
thrust chamber with bolt-on injector;
a directdrive turbopump consisting
of two centrifugal
pumps and a single-stage,
two-wheel
turbine;
an
uncooled gas generator with dual-ball
valve;
butterfly main valves;
and required controls.
The gas generator
uses the same propellant
combination as the thrust chamber.
Table 3-2 presents all necessary
operating
parameters
on
which engine component designs will be based
for the A-1 engine system.
The A-1 engine system schematic
diagram is
shown in figure 2-7. This diagram identifies
clearly all major engine components
and their
interconnecting
plumbing.
For the various

INTRODUCTION

TABLE 3-2.-750K

TO SAMPLE

A-1

Stage

[Sea-level
Engine

(turbopump

Specific
Oxidizer

impulse
LO2:

Flow

duration

......

..................

.......................

Thrust

ratio

(tubular
cooled

.....

lb/ft

.....................

chamber

71.38

lb/see...
lb/ft 3 ......

892.3
50.45

O/F

wall construction
by fuel):

........

lb ........
sec ..........

Injector
Nozzle

end pressure
..............
stagnation
pressure
........

psia
psia

Fuel

flow

flow

Mixture

rate

................

rate ....................

O/F

Ct efficiency
.....................
Ct .........................................

Percent

Contraction

Ac/Ae

ratio

.................

Expansion
ratio ..................
Throat area A_ ...................
L* ..............................
Nozzle

contour

Calibration
Pump:

Developed
Pump:

Flow

rate

.....................

Shaft speed
Heat exchanger

Shaft

rpm .........

7000

psia .........
F .........

640
1400

...................
...................

speed

...................

98
1.532

pressure
....................
temperature
.................
flow

power

drive:

Gas

power

generator

Flow

rpm .........
lb/sec
.........

7000

......................

bhp ..........

500

rate

.....................
loss

pressure

rate

lb/sec

Injector

psi ...........

drop

psi ...........

.............

Combustor

vector

drop

..........

..................

end

pressure
pressure

psi
psi
psi

...........
drop

........

....

26.7
25
25

..........
...........
.........

lb/sec

pressure
drop
drop ............

pressure

Injector

....

................
drop .............

generator:
Mixture ratio

......

.................

.....................

Control-orifice
Valve pressure
Gas

58.2
7000
20380

Entrance
loss
Line pressure

1971
14 850
70.7

.....

rpm .........
in-lb .......

Control-orifice
pressure
drop
Valve
pressure
drop ............
Injector
pressure
drop ..........
Fuel side:

1505
2930

bhp ........
Percent
.....

Percent

......................
......................

side:

Flow

35
55

92
27 140

system:

Oxidizer

Entrance

200
150
25

........

bhp ........

.......................

Auxiliary
Shaft

23.7
lb/sec

......................

speed
torque

Thrust
Fuel

892

Shaft
Shaft

97.5
5660

45

......

4790

11 790
65.8

Efficiency

827

14
487

lb/sec

Shaft power
...................
Efficiency
....................

45
1720

.......

Shaft

Ae/A t ........
in s ..........

psia ........
ft ..........

15

bhp ........
Percent
.....

Line

pressure
..........
head .............

10
110

..........
........

lb/sec

1941

side:

Pump discharge
Developed
pump
Pump:

psi ..........

ft ..........

.....................

....................

1.6

psi ...........
psia ..........

...........

Shaft power
...................
Efficiency
....................

................................

80 percent

drop ..........
...............

...........

psi

psia
psia

.............

rate

in ............

pressure
pressure

psi

Turbine:

.......

Main valve
Pump inlet

rate

head

ratio

.......

psi ..........
psi ..........
psi ...........

pump

Flow

2.35

Injector
pressure
drop .............
Torus
dome pressure
drop ..........
Line pressure
drop ................

drop ....

Inlet
pressure
.................
Discharge
pressure
............

bell
Oxidizer

pressure

Pressure

.....
......

..........................

orifice

...............

Gas

.......

Percent
ft/sec

drop ................
pressure

1095
1000

........

c* efficiency
.....................
c* ..............................

valve

Inlet
Inlet

......

lb/sec

ratio .....................

Parameters

747 000
270

........
........

Ib/sec

pressure

Main

2.20

regeneratively

..........................
impulse ..................

Line

1967.7

3 ......

Thrust
Specific

Oxidizer

750000
165
252.4

lb/sec

Flow rate .....................


Density .......................
Mixture

lb ........
sec ..........
sec ........

rate .....................

Density
Fuel RP-I:

Engine Operating
conditions]

feed):

Thrust ..........................
Nominal single-firing

65

CALCULATIONS

615
10
120

......

65.3

psi ...........
psi ...........

25
25

psi ..........
psi ...........

800
20

psi ..........

140

O/F

.......

psia

.........

0.408
710

psi ...........

70

control:

side:
Minimum

Injector
Jacket

pressure
drop .............
and manifold
pressure

drop.,

psi ..........
psi ..........

200
290

acceleration

Maximum
Displacement

velocity

.............
.................

...................

rad/sec:
deg/sec
deg ..........

.......
.......

1
10
_q4

6G

DESIGN

MAIN

OF

LIQUID

OXIDIZER

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

VALVE

_P-_OXIDIZER
[

P= 1505 PSIA
LDX-DISCHARGE
DUCT

INLET
PiN = 55

PStA

W= 1971 :/'SEC OXIDIZER PUMF

WC,GO=27 #/SEC
INJECTOR

ORIFICE_
I10 PSi
/

_P

P =1720 PSIA
FUELDISCHARGE

PINJ END = 109,5 PSIA

VI,/=892-'#/SEC

FUEL PUMP
PIN=45

PC = t000

PSIA

MAIN FUEL
VALV E

=65 #/SEC

4--

FUEL

W= 92.'fk/SEC-

GENERATOR

== 6"1.0 PSIA

TURBINE

= 1400 F

TURBINE

EXHAUST

P=27PSIA

A-I
THRUST

CHAMBER

750K

First

Stage

Fuel
Developed
Flow
rate

Engine

pump

head

Propellants:
Liquid
RP-1
Thrust
Specific
Mixture

engine

oxygen

density

density
(sea

level)

Expansion
area
Throat
area
Thrust

Flow

impulse
ratio

71.38

lb/ft

50.45

lb/ft

750000

impulse
ratio

ratio

chamber
14
487

in 2

747

000

270
2.35

sec

7000

rpm

2930

ft

head

bhp

pump

Flow
rate
Efficiency
Horsepower

1971 lb/see
70.7%

Speed

7000

14 850

bhp
rpm

Turbine

rates:
oxidizer

1941

fuel

827

Figure

11 790

Speed

Developed

sec

lb/sec

Horsepower

Oxidizer

lb

262.4
2.20
Thrust

Specific
Mixture

parameters

ft

892
65.8%

Efficiency
Nominal

4790

lb

Pin
Pressure
TemPin

lb sec

Exhaust

engine

performance

640 psia
23.7
1400 F
58.2%

Efficiency
Horsepower

lb ' sec

3-1.-A-I

ratio

thrust

diagram.

27 140 bhp
3000 lb

PSIA
INLET

INTRODUCTION

phases

of engine

been

found

formance
basic

shown

in figure

reader

prepare

3-1.

three

the

"engine

principal

A-1

It is
own

an

is a combination
and

The

his

development,

from

This

schematic

parameters.

other

and

to work

diagram."

engine

formance

the

design

useful

it has

chamber.

per-

on these

two

of the

plumbing

system

per-

engine

ment

diagram

suggested

that

performance

TO SAMPLE CALCULATIONS

is

discharge

the
for

For

simplicity

turbopump

the

of mounting

and

directly

7830

pounds

design

layout

to the

overall

dimensions

thrust

This

arrange-

without

punlp-

engine.

The

pounds

of the

A-1

dry,
The

shown

by

engine
7900

engine

are

flexure.

is achieved

at burnout.

compactness,

in the

propellant-duct
control

7500

mounted

located

them.

gimbaling

entire

approximately

is attached

between

engine

are either

or are

thrust-vector

gimbaling

stages.

components

high-pressure

Rather,

diagrams

other

assemblies,

permits

and
the

All

67

weighs

pounds

wet,

preliminary
system

and

in figure

3-2,

its

1555
42,0
._LCI"u

ATOR

CHAMBER
f_FUEL

FOX

ATTACH
:

/ DOME/"

MANIFOLD

95.9

G_MBAL_-..

I II_.-,BEAR,NG
/ _ | VEHICLE
I#/ / ATTACH/

FLEXBILE

PROPELLANT

DISCHARGE

DUCTS

OX
INLET
GENERATOR
VALVE

--,//

--4o.5--_,\\

,3.1

'
OX

Figure
System

750K

starting

method

"main-tank-head

start,"

ladder

(figs.

sequence

used

under

of the

A-1

combined
2-7

and

engine
with

stage

vehicle-tank-head

is the
pressure

2-8).

Propellants

pressures

initiategas generator operation.


pump

first

Operation

The

are

3-2.-A-1

to

As the turbo-

starts to accelerate, main

propellant pres-

engine

to mainstage

After
pleted

plugs.

valve

remains

all

surized,

the

activated

upon

four-way

control

closing
sure

side

opening

side

ator

valve

open

and

erator

generator

valve
tank

of the

actuating

fuel

both

and

outlet

is

admitted

gas

and
generator

they

to the
are

ignited

the

by the

power

level

the

turbopump.

accelerate

increases

spring
higher

developed

and

to the

gas

upstream

propellant

generator,

of the

the

"bootstraps"

is

pressures

gas

presgenergen-

by the

sequence

the

outlet

the
oxidizer

valve

is actuated.

The

fuel

(such

pressure
rupturing

as

just

igniter
being

oxidizer
stroke,

igniter

fuel

sequence

valve

hypergol

diaphragms.

triethylaluminum)

chamber
oxidizer

to the
its

pressure

main
valve

linked

cartridge,

the

valves.

system

mechanically

igniter

with

pump

selection),

During

admits

combustion

con-

main

and

in turn
Hypergol

closed

is

generator-turbine
fuel

rate

opens.

an integral

still

which

itself.

spring

valve
The

valves
gas

are

sufficient

in turn,

oxidizer

valve

substantially

pressures

to start

main

the

sequence.
gas generator

(valve

to the

gas

until

At a predetermined

engine

fuel

pump

com-

are

to open.

propellants

where

the

the

since

pump later
in the
The low initial

pres-

sparkplugs

oxidizer

The

are

energized

head)

main

actuators.

combustor,

signal
and

are

tanks

dual

is

vented

from

admit

preparations

propellant

a given

is

(50 psia

launch

point,

closed,

opening

As a result,

main

gas

At this

prevents

nected

vehicle
the

layout.

level.

Sequence

and

preliminary

spark

available
Starting

INLET
PUMP

system

This,
sures "bootstrap" the system

iNLET8 OUTLET

\LFUEL
_FUEL

PUMP

enters

elements

and

admitted

by

the
ignites
the

main

68

DESIGN OF LIQUID

oxidizer

valve.

sustains

the

The

chamber

combustion

sufficient

valve.

to the

main

the valve,
Main fuel

This
fuel

pressure

the

hypergol

ROCKET ENGINES

equally
are

true

resulting

from

igniter

the

ignition

propellant

pressure

etry

engineers

tion

effects

admits

opening

fuel

actuator,

opening

thrust

impulse

to the

rated

level.

of a cutoff

control

valve

four-way
The

opening

valves
pressure
vent,
by

Turbine

decay.
all

and

the

are

Note

main

mitting

While

valves

springs.

the

force

only.

power

and

of this

certain

fluorinehydrogen

is largely

flow

below

the

(no

cooling

which

jacket).

some

has

the

The

timing,

closing
by

port,

however,

smallest

principal

from

vol-

oxidizer

closing

bulky

water-hammer

is

by the

For

the

expected

that

reasons

a four-engine

cluster

total

thrust

vacuum

pounds

per

vehicle

performance

has

liquid

been

of rocket

of the

propellants
(LO2)

hydrogen

engines

major

systems

early

flight

Through
of the
come

are

expected

booster

has

the

improved

maturity.

Several

development

the

the production

propellant
a routine

considerably.
that

in the

oxygen

matter;
It can

near

and

liquid

future

its

will

and

line

are

be

art of

constructions
of hydrogen

density

and

of the

and

of the

contain-

input

per

hydrogen

mass

temperature
low

sharply

resulting

to liquefy

air

increases

heat

some

is

vehicle
weight

is
on the

boiloff

therefore,

of rocket

developed,

of

of liquid

in extreme

insulation,

properly

density,

area

unit

are

low

surface
the

is a high

lines

large

techniques

highly

tank

of low

This

rates,

Tank

of the

superiority

sufficiently

surfaces.

It can

rates.

vital.
insulation

penalties

incurred.

or in

Overall,
gain

however,
can

a substantial

be obtained

for upper

net

perform-

stages.

handling
(LO 2 or
price

be reasonably
this

heat
is

and

for upper

(Is).

state

tanks

Furthermore,

transfer

ance

years,

the

high.

offset

stages.

unless

resulting

tank

art of

The
in

oxygen-to-

yield

the

Because

Although

the

are

of available

resulting

a typical

energy

effect

rate,

hydrogen

For
atten-

For

increase

insulated.

ers,
the

hydrogen
the

hydrogen

drawbacks.

successfully

for upper

boiloff

the

developers.

recently

in active

has become
down

through

as propellants.
has attracted

reached

000

substantial

liquid

and

application.

cryogenic

"LOX')

relatively

(150

in upper
and

stage,

having

obtainable

experimenters

only

A-1

chosen,

Because
gains

oxygen

However,

the

pounds

(LH2)
have been selected
decades
this combination
tion

with

of 600 000

engine).

of high-energy

stages,

as

its

vehicle

further

systems

ENGINE

same

and

amount

density,

high

A secondary

use

low

tanks.

however,

stages

will
STAGE

the

same payHowever,

hydrogen
mixture
ratio of 5:1, the corresponding
volume
ratio is inversed:
1:3.
This
disadvantage,

valves

have

is

ultralightweight

A-2

great

less

By building

oxygen

the

does
one

rather

duct

of liquid

including

Hydrogen

cutoff

considerations.

3.3

fluorine

use.

experience.

of that

the

advantages

spring

that

case

fast

makes

How-

and fluorine
components

all

cessation

in this

are

4 percent).

toxicity
of fluorine
as a liquid
and as

products,

theo-

Only

combinations

valve

by turbopump

by

to the

by ad-

retained,

and

reactions.

closed

shown

and

is close

for chemical

for operational

attenuasignals,

in specific

position

closed

influenced

valve,

tanks

yield

generator

is closed
has

attractive

low

guidance

the

(approximately

of combustion

of all
Telem-

on ItF

A-1 and A-2 stage


a little
larger,
the
load can be obtained
as with fluorine.

to their

valve

the

chamber

of the
gases

combination

maximum

higher

harmless

or liquid.

for vehicle

retical

ever, the extreme


compounds,
both

to close.
vent;

propellant

are

pressure

Experience

time

gas

engine

main

in their

valve

fuel

propellant

main

the

characteristics

need

valves

held

oxidizer

main

precision
decay

of all
the

that

actuation

while

the

is deenergized

pressures

close.

signal,

most

important,

elements

combustion

solid

exhaust

aspect
Most

slightly
receipt

the

it because

of the

telemetry.

Sequence

Upon

vapor-is
like

Both

Their

combinations,

an important

climb

hydrogen.

available.

product-water

is the last step in the sequence.


the combustion
chamber;
cham-

and

for liquid

abundantly

to actuate
valve

valve

which
enters

Cutoff

following
flame.

pressure

is

monitor

ber

Fuel
igniter

PROPELLANT

be

has

General
The

Engine
A-2

System

engine

Description

is a single-start,

fixed-thrust,

are

INTRODUCTION

TABLE

3-3.-150K

TO SAMPLE

A-2

Stage

Engine

[Vacuum
Engine

(turbopump

Thrust

lb ........

single-firing

duration

Specific

impulse

Oxidizer
Flow

LO2:
rate .....................

Density

......

..................

.......................
.....................

chamber

(tubular
cooled

by turbine

impulse
end

71.38

pressure

ratio

......

57.6

3 .......
...........

4.42

psia
........

.....................

440

.........

psia .........
lb/sec
.....
lb/sec
......
O/F

........

875
800
285.2
54.5
5.22

Percent
fi/sec

.....
......

97.5
7480

Ct efficiency
.....................
Ct .........................................

Percent

......

101
1.895

ratio

.................

AtAt

......

Expansion
ratio ..................
Throat
area,
At ...................

Ae/A t ........
in 2 .........

L* ..............................

in ............

Nozzle

Oxidizer

contour

26

..........................

Fuel

flow

rate ..................

power

pressure

Main

valve

Calibration
Pump
Pump

drop ................
pressure
orifice

drop

..........

pressure

drop ....

inlet pressure
...............
discharge
pressure
..........

160
40

psi ...........

20

psi ...........

20

psi ...........

60

psia
psia

..........
........

Developed
pump head
Pump weight
flow rate

.............
.............

ft ..........
lb/sec
.....

Pump

rate

gpm

volumetric

flow

Heat exchanger
bleed
tank pressurization)

.........

(oxidizer
.............

........

lb/sec

35
1175
2305
290,5
1830

.......

2,5

Pump:
Shaft

power

Efficiency

...................
....................

bhp .........
Percent

1910
.......

64

.........

700

.........

1200
16

......

1.58

bhp .........

....................

speed
torque

1940

Percent

...................
...................

pressure

Jacket

and

Line

pressure

Main

valve

.....

543

rpm .........
in-lb .......

Pump
Pump

.............

8600
14200

..........

100

.. psi ..........

325

drop

orifice

pressure

psi
..........
drop ....

pump

head

.............

bleed

power

Shaft

.............

60

..........
........

.......

bhp .........
.......

rpm ........
Ib/sec

.......

Gas

lb/sec

rate

Shaft
Shaft
gas

from

Temperature
Weight
Mixture

thrust

chamber

flow rate ..................


ratio .....................

vector

4.32
62.5
27000
14 250

2 ........

750

.........

1200

lb/sec
.......
O/F ........

5.9
0.90

control:

Minimum

acceleration

Maximum

velocity

Displacement

700
1200
16

drive:
lb/in

.....................

.....

rpm ........
in-lb .......
for turbine

2.2

6100

Percent

...................
...................

........................

......

bhp .........

....................

speed
torque

Pressure

..................
...................

Efficiency

80

for

psia .........
F .........

power

2.2

27 000

Inlet pressure
.................
Inlet temperature
...............
Pressure
ratio ...............................
flow

59.8
6080

6100

Percent
bleed
..........

25
1400
44 800

Ib/sec

...................

Chamber
coolant
passage
fuel tank pressurization
Turbine;

20

psi ...........

Ib/sec
......
gpm ........

....................

speed

20

ft .........

...................

Efficiency

...........

psi ...........
psia
psia

weight
flow rate .............
volumetric
flow rate .........

Shaft

Thrust

drop

drop ................
pressure

Heat exchanger
Pump:

Tapoff

psi

pressure

inlet pressure
...............
discharge
pressure
..........

Developed
Pump
Pump

drop

manifold

Calibration

Shaft

Line

...................

8600

side:

side:
psi ..........
psi ...........

psia

ib/sec

75 percent
bell

Injector
pressure
drop .............
Torus
dome pressure
drop ..........

.................

Gas

1.60
40
98.6

rpm .........

Injector

149 500

sec ..........

..............

c* efficiency
.....................
c* ..............................

Contraction

pressure

Shaft
Shaft

gas):

Ib ........

..................

Nozzle
stagnation
pressure
Oxidizer
flow rate ................
Fuel flow rate ....................
Mixture

3 ......

...................

Inlet
temperature
...............
Pressure
ratio ...............................
Shaft

regeneratively
extension
film

exhaust

..........................

Injector

288

lb/fi
O/F

wall construction
by fuel.
Nozzle

cooled

Specific

lb/sec

lb/sec

Density
.......................
Mixture ratio .....................

Thrust

434

.......

Parameters

speed

lnlet

250

see ..........

lb/fi

Shaft
Turbine:

Efficiency

Fuel LH2:
Flow rate

Thrust

150 000

see ..........

Operating

conditions]

feed):

..........................

Nominal

69

CALCULATIONS

.............
.................

....................

rad/sec

2 .......

deg/sec

.......

deg ...........

2
15
6

70

DESIGN OF LIQUID

gimbaled,
ber

bipropellant

features

cooling,
gas.

and
The

film

fuel,

chosen.
are

chamber
in the

tapped

tapoff

duct

level.

The

turbines

Their

exhaust

gases

and

injected

ratio

plane.

for the
ratio
the

Thus

nozzle

pass).

gas

No lubricants

which

could

engine

is

ignite

spinner.

and

trically

temperature

igniter

fluid

first-stage
from

are

Both

the

used

and

from

takeoff.
thrust

to

_._

3-3 and

hydro-

"r"

The

in figure
and

layout

customary,

en-

stage,

the

feet

is

not

an abso-

purposes

is achieved

may

by gimbaling

apploximately

wet,

and

dimensions
of the

conif a

for its

A-2

practical

pounds

Note

vacuum

of the

It weighs

overall

3-3.

on

in vacuum

case

control

engine

A-2

2181

2292
and

engine

pounds
the

at

prelimi-

are

shown

engine

(figs.

3-4.

/-

Operation
starting
3-5)

fast

buildup

nal

to main

method

of the

is a "turbine
(less
stage).

than

A-2

spin

start,"

2 seconds

Starting

power

for very

from
is

start

sig-

furnished

FUEL.PUMP
INLET
OXIDIZER

_ .._

FUEL PUMP

PuMP

-----1 _

HYPERGDL CARTRIDGE
AND MONITORINGVALVE

extank

param-

The

based

of 250 000

2317

design

The

elec-

OXIDIZER-PUMP

OXIDIZERTANK
PRESSURANT-HEAT
EXCHANGER

oxidizer

operating

3-3.

are

but for atl


absolute.

dry,

System

coolant

INLET /

engine

performs

In the

engine.

in figure

a ground

Gaseous

chamber

entire

nary
by

turbine

insulated

conditioned

tank.
the

trifluoride

LH 2, is

chamber.

and

altitude

burnout.

The

A-2

is justified

starts

pounds

used

generated

with

fuel
from

in a heat

main

is shown

Thrust-vector
the

con-

are

Chlorine

is hypergolic

combustion

until

gases

main
bled

heated

in table

parameters

duration.

above

temperatures.

hot

of the

lute vacuum,
be considered

(1!4

fluids

is

for vehicle

diagram

starting

area

chamber,

other

vehicle
oxygen

discharge
used

This

stage

cooling

the

the

of liquid

presented

engine

tire

40:1

cooled

is

ditions.

area

film

to actuate

and

that

thrust

to the

of the

at low

turbine

is bled

provide

pump

changer

schematic

orifice

expansion

there

used

by the

spinner

gen

gases

or any

freeze

the

source

is

started

which

30:1

oxidizer

eters

in parallel.

to the

portion

A listing

Hot

thrust

coupled

remainder

trols.

(C1F3),

routed

is regeneratively

Helium

a solid-grain

gas

are

to pressurize

A small

pressurization.

gas

engine

ROCKET ENGINES

passage

may be

combustion

A hot

the

from

inde-

speed.

main

are

the

The

plane,

the

in the

portion

plane.
30:1

pump

turbines.

controls

exhaust
by two

at optimum

the

cham-

turbopumps.

axial

off from

to power

chamber

fed

centrifugal

operates

thrust

regenerative

turbine
is

an alternative

Each

gases

with

assembly

direct-drive

the

The

of fuel

cooling

chamber

pendent,
For

system.

a combination

PROPELLANT

\_-//

"

II

FUEL
TURBINE

TURBINESPINNER

MAINOXIDIZER
VALVE
PU CONTROL

_'Jl

CHAMBER.GASTAPOFF
MANIFOLD

HYPERGOL SEQUENCE

==_

VALVE
_
_

,1
-\
\

A,N
THRU.
CN. ER
ANIFoLDTOR
EXHAUS. IHE
Figure

3-3.-A-2

I/
_

st3ge

d_ '=='_ FUEL BLEEDVALVE


"_
ENGINE-CONTROL
4.WAYVALVE
RETURN TO

FUEL
TANKAIH
FOEVALVE
(

engine

system

schematic

.EL,U
TANK
diagram.

INTRODUCTION

TO SAMPLE

71

CALCULATIONS

THRUST

CHAMBER-

FUEL

.u

I
II

7?..5"
D

I
L

EXHAUST
GAS MANIFOLD

Figure 3-4.-150K

A-2 stage engine system

preliminary layout.
CUT OFF

START

E,._._.__'_'_TURBINE

SPINNER

IGNITES

i
I'

ENGINE CONTROL
ENERGIZED
FOR

4-WAYVALVE
SOLENOID
OPEN CONTROL

ENGINE
CONTROL
4-WAY
VALVE SOLENOID
DE-ENERGIZED
FOR CLOSE CONTROL

I
TU_BOPUMP

_\-_,,_\,__

BUILD

MAIN
FUEL VALVE
AND
SEQUENCE
VALVE OPEN;
VALVE CLOSES.

MAIN

UP

HYPERGOL
FUEL BLEED

_,'X_,
1

OXIDIZER

VALVE

CLOSES

MAIN FUEL
SEQUENCE

VALVE
VALVE

AND HYPERGOL
CLOSE FUEL

BLEED

_MAIN

OX. VALVE

_ _
1_-__

THRUST

OPENS

=_--_-_:*

_'*_

BUILD UP

.4

.8

L2

OPEN

1.6

2.0
Figure

THRUST

iii'
0

VALVE

0
3-5.-A-2

engine

system

.2

sequence

.4

.6

diagram.

.8

I.O

DECAYS

72

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

by a turbine spinner.
bootstrap
the turbine
level is established.

Starting

Chamber
and main

tapoff gases then


stage operational

Sequence

As part of the separation


and staging sequence, a vehicle programer furnishes
a start
signal to the engine, which ignites the turbine
spinner and supplies hot gases at 2000 F to
turbines and combustion
chamber.
This signal
also energizes
the solenoid of the engine control
valve, which vents the closing side of both main
propellant
valve actuators
and pressurizes
the
opening side of the fuel valve actuator
with
helium gas.
Simultaneously,
the hypergol sequence valve, which is mechanically
linked to
the main fuel valve, is opened and the actuator
of the normally open fuel bleed valve is pressurized to close.
The fuel flows through the
chamber cooling jacket under increasing
pump
discharge
pressure
and injects
into the combustion chamber.
Ignition is achieved
by the hypergolic reaction
between hydrogen and the slug of
chlorine trifluoride
forced into the chamber by
increased
oxidizer-pump
discharge
pressure.
When the main fuel valve reaches
the 90percent open position,
ports integral
with the
actuating
piston open and permit helium gas to
flow through the hypergol monitor valve and to
pressurize
the open side of the main oxidizer
valve actuator.
The main oxidizer valve opens,
admitting
oxidizer to the chamber where pressure
builds up rapidly.
Chamber tapoff gases bootstrap the turbines
to main stage operation.
The
spinner will burn for about 1.2 seconds.
After
the main stage is achieved,
the propellantutilization
servo system will begin to function.

Cutoff

Sequence

The cutoff signal, received from the vehicle


programer,
deenergizes
the engine control valve
causing it to close.
This vents the open side
and pressurizes
the closing side of the main propellant valve actuators.
The main oxidizer valve
is made to close faster than the main fuel valve,
by proper orificing of the helium lines, to assure
a fuel-rich cutoff.
Engine thrust decays.
The
fuel bleed valve opens after the helium pressure
in its actuator is vented.

3.4 A-3 STAGE

ENGINE

The totalthrustof 48000 pounds is subdividedintothree engines of 16 000-pound thrust


each. This effectsa shorteroverallpropulsion
system and a shorter,lightervehicle interstage.
Furthermore,
the liquid fluorine/liquid
hydrogen
propellant
combination
was chosen because of
the relatively
stringent
performance
requirements
for upper stages.
Fluorine is the most reactive and energetic
chemical
element.
It has vigorous and reliable
hypergolic
ignition characteristics,
and superior
specific
impulse capabilities
with most fuels.
The high density of liquid fluorine, combined
with high performance
with liquid hydrogen,
results in maximum payloads.
As mission requirements become more ambitious,
payload advantages from the fluorine-oxidized
propellant
combination
should compensate
for handling
problems caused by fluorine toxicity
and corrosiveness.
Past experience
has indicated
that
the operation of a fluorine-oxidized
engine is
practical
at this thrust level (50000 pounds or
less).
Fluorine when used for gaseous
passivation of metals renders a metallic
surface resistant to future chemical
reaction.
Thus, once a
metallic
fluoride film is formed, further action by
the liquid fluorine is either prevented
or significantly retarded, making handling or storing of
liquid fluorine less of a problem.
No known
elastomer
is completely
compatible
with fluorine;
however, flow tests of liquid fluorine with Teflon
have given satisfactory
results.

General

Engine

System

Description

The A-3 engine is a multiple-start,


gimbaled,
bipropellant
system.
The basic system includes
a thrust chamber assembly
using a combination
of fuel-film (LH2) and radiation
cooling;
propellant ducts; valves;
and a control subsystem.
Ignition is achieved by the hypergolicity
of the
propellants.
These are fed directly from pressurized propellant
tanks, through main propellant
valves,
to the tl_rust chamber inlets.
The propellant tanks and their gas pressurization
system are considered
part of the engine propellant
feed system.
Gaseous helium supplied from a
high-pressure
helium bottle located inside the
main fuel tank is used for main oxidizer tank

INTRODUCTION

pressurization.

The

ized

hydrogen

by gaseous

main

fuel

hydrogen
bottle
which
is
and which
is also located
tank.

Both

changers

pressurants

located

extensions
pressure
lant

they

regulators

tanks.

Helium

main

valves

purge

the

A-3

and

engine

conditions,
pulsion
figure

system

thrust
are

Welded joints are used extensively.

is

in heat

metal-bellows

The
propel-

and

during

parameters,

than mechanically

3-4.

schematic

diagram

is

to

tank.

The
shown

design

governed

of the

by simplicity

components.

This

is

entire
and

propulsion
minimum

essential

because

thrust loads

through the fuel

tanks and engine systems.

Thrust-vector control is achieved

pro-

ing the thrust chambers.

in

weighs

approximately

pounds

at burnout.

system
number

in figure 3-7.

Both tanks are insulated, as are the ducts

between

3-6.

The

stabilized. The

are transmitted to the payload

for vacuum

in table

are shown

fuel tank is pressure stabilized rather

the

start.

presented

type.

sion system and dimensions

nozzle

to operate

No rotating

Sliding seals are of the

A preliminary design layout of the A-3 propul-

through

actuators,

manifolds

seals are employed.

ex-

to the

used

gimbal

a liquid

by helium
main fuel

chamber

transferred

the

highly reactive and toxic nature of fluorine.

expanded

gas

operating
are

heated

and

propellant

is pressurfrom

pressurized
inside
the
are

at the

before

tank

supplied

73

TO SAMPLE CALCULATIONS

envelope

is
of

by gimbal-

basic engine

330 pounds

dry and 365

It has a cylindrical space

of 5 feet 4 inches diameter by 7 feet

6 inches length. The

of the

Each

propulsion system

(includ-

ing the three engines and the tankage) weighs

OXIDIZER TANK
THRUST
CHAMBER

FUEL TANK

\
HELIUM SUPPLY TO PURGE AND ACTUATING

,-_PRESSURE

REGULATOR

=_

TANK RELIEF VALVE

PRESSURANT
VALVE

TANK FILL AND DRAIN


VALVE

SHUT-OFF

MAIN PROPELLANT
VALVE

SYSTEMS (NOT SHOWN)

=O

PRESSURANT FILL VENT


AND RELIEF VALVE

CHECK VALVE
Figure

3-6.-A-3

stage

propulsion

and

engine

system

schematic

diagram.

74

DESIGN

TABLE

OF

LIQUID

3-4.-16K

PROPELLANT

Stage

A-3

Engine

[Vacuum
Engine

(pressurized

Thrust

total

duration

lb .........

LH2:
Density
Flow

Mxxture
Thrust

..................

.......................

ratio

Thrust

Fuel

film

cooled

by fuel

on

nozzle

extension):

Mixture

rate

ratio

and

.....................

O/F

110
100
30.78

pressure

...........

......

102
1.817

Contraction

Ac/At

.........

Ae/At

........

35
88
28

Thrust

vector

in ............
70 percent
bell

acceleration

.............

tad/sec

Maximum velocity
.................
Displacement
....................
side

Injector

pressure

Oxidizer
Main
Line

(pressurized

dome

drop
pressure

.............
drop

2 .......

deg/sec
.......
deg ...........

by heated

.......

lb/sec

....

0.1555

system)
preslb ............

tank,

60

volume

ft s ..........

7.35

psia

4500

tank, initial

.......................

side

(pressurized

by heated

........

Fuel

tank

psia

pressure

................

...........
............
.........

160

Total fuel weight


(300 sec duration
for 3 engines,
plus 1 percent

Pressural_t
(assuming

.......................

(hydrogen)
tank

flow

vapor

bottle

final

(liquid

8
5

percent
Pressurant

hydrogen
ullage
storage

4660

ft 3..........

1087

rate
lb/sec

pressure

tank,

0.346

350
lb ...........

108

...........

ft 3..........

25.2

pressure..,

psia

including
volume)

.....

(assuming

psia,
plus 4 percent
reserve)
......
Pressurant
storage
tank, volume

lb ..........
3 per-

temperature

300 R) ........................
Total pressurant
weight

psi ............
psi ............

The A-3 propulsion


system is designed
for
automatic
start, on receipt, of a signal from the
guidance
system.
A similar signal effects automarie engine shutdown.
One or more restarts can
be made by merely sending additional
start and
shutdown signals to the propulsion
system.

10
5

psi
psi

psi ............

Operation

25
10

valve
pressure
drop ..........
pressure
drop ................

storage
25

psi ...........
psi ...........

Main
Line

residual)

15
7

hydrogen):

.............
drop ........

Fuel tank volume


(including
cent ullage
volume) ..............

approximately
5130 pounds dry, 37 900 pounds
wet, and 5530 pounds at burnout.
System

Fuel

helium):
psi ...........

valve
pressure
drop ..........
pressure
drop ................

305

(including

.......................

Injector
pressure
drop
Inlet manifold
pressure

control:

Minimum

Oxidizer

...........

..........................

ft 3...........

Percent

contour

27950

rate

in the

storage

17
170

5,13

CI efficiency
.....................
Ct .........................................

Nozzle

weight

storage

Pressurant

98
7910

in 2

lb .........

(assume
200 _ R storage
temperature,
including
3 percent
ullage
volume)
..................

446

.......
......

Expansion
ratio .................
Throat
area At ...................
L* ..............................

flow

requirements

reserve)

Percent
ft/sec

.................

(helium)

.........

sec

for 3 engines,
plus
residual)
..............

pressurant

other

16 000

......

(300

psi ...........
psia

(assume
storage
bottle
final
sure 350 psi, plus 2 percent

c* efficiency
.....................
c* ..............................

ratio

weight

Pressurant

psia .........
psia .........
lb/sec
.....
lb/sec

Total

radia-

see ..........

....................

oxidizer

drop ....

............

(assuming
tank gas temperature
400 _ R) ........................

lb .........

..................

pressure

pressure

Pressurant

5.13

...........

orifice

Oxidizer
tank volume
(including
3 percent
ullage
volume)
.........

4.42

......

wall

end pressure
..............
stagnation
pressure
........
flow rate ................

flow

94.16
80.78

tion cooled

impulse

Injector
Nozzle
Oxidizer

lb 'ft 3 ....
lb'sec...

O/F

.........................

Specific

446

lb/sec

.....................
(solid

300

sec ..........

* ....

Parameters

tank

duration
1 percent

sec ..........

lb/ft

rate .....................

chamber

16 000

Total

Oxidizer
LF2:
Density
.......................
Flow rate .....................
Fuel

Oxidizer

multiple-firing

impulse

Operating

Calibration

........................

Specific

ENGINES

conditions]

gas-feed):

..........................

Nominal

ROCKET

3
.........

350

Figure 3-8 shows the operational


sequence
of the
A-3 stage engine.
In conjunction
with figure3-6,
this illustrates
the system starting
and shutdown
operations.
3.5

A-4 STAGE

ENGINE

For the A-4 stage, two engines of 7500pound thrust each were selected,
for a combined
thrust of 15 000 pounds.
It is assumed that the
mission assigned
to this fourth and last stage of

INTRODUCTION

TO

SAMPLE

75

CALCULATIONS

(L H2)TANK
CHAMBERS

(3)

[L F2) TANK

160 PSIA
170 PSIA

12'D

VECTOR
CONTROL GIMBAL
ACTUATORS
(6)

I
J

l
i

-HIGH-PRESSURE
HELIUM BOTTLE

ITERNAL
TANK
INSULATION

INTERSTAGE

CONNECTING

SKIRT

LIQUID-HYDROGEN
PRESSURANT
BOTTLE

Figure 3-7.-48K

A-3 stage propulsion system preliminary design layout.

our space vehicle may require prolonged cruising


periods prior to ignition and possibly even longer
waiting periods prior to reignition.
While it
would be desirable to utilize the high-energy
propellants of the second and third stages, the
fact that they are cryogenics poses some prob-

lems.

Although

probably

be

niques,

they

systems
Solid
the

cryogenic
used

propellants
refined

insulation

not

selected

because

were

complication
propellants

need

for

for
were

a vehicle

also

repeated

ruled

starts

PRESSURANT SHUTOFF VALVES OPEN

'

I_
!

k_._,_N]j

CHAMBER PURGE

PROPELLANT

_
_'_\'_"'"-'"_

TANKS PRESSURIZED

MAIN PROPELLANT VALVE CONTROL


SOLENOID VALVE OPEN & PURGE STOPS

I_

I
I
0

I
2

MAIN PROPELLANT

SOLENOID

_l

I _

PRESSURES DECAY
VALVE

VALVE CLOSES

MAIN I_ROPELLANT
THRUST

I
5

TIME, SECONDS
Figure 3-8.-A-3

STARTS

VALVES CLOSE

TH_ST BU_LD-UP
I
4

CONTROL
PURGE

VALVES OPEN

I
3

THRUST CHAMBER PURGE

_TANK
I
I
I
MAIN PROPELLANT

i
I
I

SIGNAL

i_._-_=

_I
START
SIGNAL

of

throttling.

_'_'%."_\X_,'X_\_X_

I
, j-_'

size.

because

PRESSURANT
SHUTOFF
VALVES CLOSE

I
THRUST

.,'-CUTOFF
IF"
j

I_

the

this

CUTOFF

techof

of
out

and

START
I

could

with

DECAYS

I
3

TIME, SECONDS
stage engine and propulsion system operational sequence.

76

DESIGN OF LIQUID

A hypergolic,

storable

possesses

certain

ute

reliability.

to high

ity of ignition

and

ease

tile

closed

vessels

ranges

for considerable

over

periods
high

high

is

However,

remedied
combination

has

the N204/N2H4

without

and propulsion system

or under-

shown

the

was

chosen

note

that

parable

the

oxidizer

nitrogen

forward

of the

as

vehicle

structure.

Teflon
material

Teflon

in the

A-4

grades

after

series

300

thrust

The

can

performance
Handling

provisions
For

propellant

The

propellant

than

gine

systems

be-

It is

of N204/N2114
100X

engine

material
short-term
stainless

can

system.

com-

brazing
materials.

propellant

valves

are

de-

trol

can

achieved

Engine

System

A-4

engine

be

system

Description
variable-

includes a thrust chamber

lizing combined

uti-

Thrust chamber

ignition is achieved

the hypergolicity of the propellants.


icant feature of this engine system
tering of two thrust chambers

One

The

propellants

from

the

pellant
Gaseous
bottles

are

propellant
valves
helium
is used

fed

by
signif-

to one propellant

to the

thrust

supplied

through

the

chamber
from

for pressurization

during

enby
heat-

first-stage

positions

a vehicle

system.

vector

by gimbaling

the

engine

dry and

a cylindrical
diameter

weighs

space

system

dry,

19 649 pounds

Note

that

A-4

for the

smaller
specified
stages

largest

A-3

nozzle
than
operate

practical

system

and

A-4
A-2.

in the
other

considerations

the

actually

chosen.

ratio

shown

and

can

ratio

of both

tanks.

The

The pressurant
is heated
in heat exchangers
located at the thrust chamber nozzle extensions

will

--A.

Operation
propulsion

automatically
system.

system

upon
During

--

a signal

main-stage

is

designed
from

use

for

proSystem

has

all three

inlets.

high-pressure

in

ratio

While

area

and

design

is

vacuum

expansion

approx-

wet,

area

performance,

fluence

(includ-

engines

expansion

for the

of

weighs

preliminary

propulsion

at

envelope

tanks)

The

ap-

9 inches

propulsion

at burnout.

con-

thrust

170 pounds

by 5 feet

complete

of

guidance
propellant

Thrust

single

of open-

vehicle

pounds

of the

the

The

by the
with

con-

degree

725

3-10.

upper

the

the

figure

best

directly
main

and
covered

aerodynamic

and

pounds

been

is the clus-

by pressurants

tanks

and

engines

slightly

feed system and one set of propellant controls.


The

assembly.
tank

two

layout

ablative and radiation cooling,

propellant ducts, valves, and control subsystems.

fuel

valves.

pounds

It has
6 inches

the

795

The basic

assembly

the

payload

propellant-utilization

basic

150

burnout.

ing

thrust, gimbaled, bipropellant system.

system,
tank

controlled

The

proximately
3 feet

is a multiple-start,

an integral

A-3

by varying

is accomplished

imately
The

is attached

resistance

measuring

length.
General

tank

against

in conjunction

chambers.

alloys,

alloys

aft end

outboard

and

of both

N2ll4,

Most

throttling

ing

quantity

in N204.

to

to the

to form

between

air

fastened

to the

routed

the

system

aluminum

are

are

while

service

ducts

trol

Kel-F,

with

as

in the

transmitted

for lower

seal

for use
steels,

nickel,
and nickel-base
used as construction

be used

fuel

tank

As

ing

Both
of

is

The

for protection

and

are

boost.

this

worthy

tank.

fairings

combination

engine.

engine

diagram is

attached

pressure-stabilized

of C1F3,

are

oxidizer
are

the

blocks

which

loads

through

be

C1F3/N2H

of LO2/RP-1.

and

a satisfactory

thermal

condition

higher

performance

to that

gimbal

of the

to explosive

A-4

engine

chlorine

N204/N2H4
for the

The

and

schematic

in figure 3-9.

are

(N2H4)

gas

at vacuum

of time

however,
requires
special
design
cause
of its thermal
characteristics.
reason,

A-4 engine operating parameters

performance

combination.

Helium

condition are presented in table 3-5. The

mounts

slightly

regulator

tanks.

temperature

thrust

additives.

propellant

gimbal actuators.
in

propellant

the

a pressure

is also used to operate the main valves and the

to the

storable

prone

by certain

through

simplic-

Hydrazine,

decomposition.

expansion

and transfer

mainte-

pressures,

(N20,)/hydrazine.

monopropellant,

before

in composition.

(C1F3)/hydrazine

tetroxide

ROCKET ENGINES

contrib-

be contained

reasonable

changes

with

trifluoride

can

applicable

combinations

are

of propellant

excessively

the

these

propellants

unacceptable

Among

which

Among

since

going

combination

characteristics

nance,

developing

propellant

PROPELLANT

to start

the

guidance

operation,

engine

in-

,lUswn.
INTRODUCTION

TABLE

3-5.-7.5K

A-4

TO SAMPLE

Stage

Engine

[Vacuum
Engine

(pressurized

gas-feed

and

Operating

throttlable):

..........................

Main

lb ..........

Nominal
duration

total multiple-firing
at full thrust
............

Specific
Oxidizer

impulse
N:O,:

..................

Density
.......................
Flow rate .....................
Fuel

7500

valve

Mixture
Oxidizer

sec ..........

410

sec ..........

320

lb/ft 3 ......
lb/sec
....

Total

pressure

Mixture

ratio

lb/ft 3 .....
lb/sec
....

.....................

O/F

.........

oxidizer

chamber

Thrust

(ablatively
cooled
nozzle
extension):

and

..........................

Specific
Injector

Nozzle
stagnation
pressure
Oxidizer
flow ....................
Fuel flow ........................
ratio

cooled

lb ..........

impulse ..................
end pressure
..............

Mixture

radiation

Oradizer

90.88
12.78

........

.....................

psia .........
lb/sec
.....
lb/sec
.....
O/F

.........

2.5

63.25
10.65

tank

percent

Total

320
110

98
5540

C[ efficiency
.....................
C[ .........................................

Percent

......

101
1.858

Contraction

AtAt

Nozzle

contour

.........

Ae/.A_ ........
in 2 .........
in ............

35
40.4
32

..........................

Fuel

side

vector

Injector

Maximum

velocity

Displacement
Oxidizer

side

(pressurized

Injector

pressure

Oxidizer

dome

Line

thrust

pressure

level

.................

....................

drop

.............
drop

.......

drop ................

and mixture

2 .......

deg/sec

.......

15

pressure

ratio

(assuming

25
3

Pressure

psi ............

Temperature

are controlled

con-

drop ....

restart

an

operated

........

(helium)

and
tional

full

thrust.

4
4

psi ............

8
155

final

8840

ft 3.........

143.5

lb/sec

.....

0.025

temperature

400 psia.
...............

plus
lb ..........

number
thrust
Figure
the

14.4

ft a..........
psia

...................

of

lb ..........

ullage

indefinite

sequence

psi ............
psi ............

flow

......................

any

25

psi ............

full

storage
tank:
.......................

at

psi ...........

psi ..........

...............

tank

bottle

psi ............

560

helium):

........

residu'M)
(including

volume)

psi ...........

4.3
4500
max.

for 2 engines,

pressurant

Pressurant
Volume

12.95

ft 3...........

drop

................
(410 sec

191 '_ R, pressure


2 percent
reserve)

helium):

00225

lb .........

.............

orifice

storage

....

psia ........
R .....

tank pressure
fuel weight
duration

120

plus

temperature
700 R) ..............
Total
pressurant
weight
(assuming

tinuously
through the engine control package by
the guidance
and propellant
utilization
systems.
Upon a shutdown signal, engine shutdown is
effected.
The propulsion
system is capabIe of

drop
pressure

2.5 ullage

deg ...........
by heated

pressure

tad/set

psia,

by heated

plus 1.2 percent


Fuel tank volume

70 percent
bell

.............

ft 3...........

temperature

pressure
drop ................
valve
pressure
drop ..........

thrust

10 560

lb/sec

Line
Main
Fuel
Total

10
165

flow

manifold

rate

acceleration

........

reserve)
...............
storage
tank:
.......................

Calibration

psi ...........
psia .........

(assuming

400

pressure

lb .........

Inlet

control:

Minimum

final

(pressurized

Nominal
Thrust

votume)

weight

bottle

............

plus

7GO R) ..............

pressurant

............

psi

full

Pressure
......................
Temperature
...................

1.2

.......
......

Expansion
ratio
..................
Throat
area,
A_ ...................
L* ..............................

sec

psi

(inch,ding

ullage

2 percent
Pressurant
Volume

Percent
ft/sec

.................

(410

volume

191 R, pressure

on

100
12.78
10.65

....

reserve
.......
............

weight

temperature

1.2

c* efficiency
.....................
c* ..............................

ratio

drop

Nominal
pressurant
(helium)
rate (assuming
tank ullage

7500

sec ..........
psia .........

..........

pressure

ratio
control
tank pressure

storage
Thrust

drop

orifice

thrust
duration
for 2 engines,
08 percent
residual)
.............

N_-I,:

Density
.......................
Flow rate .....................

Parameters

conditions]

Calibration
Thrust

77

CALCULATIONS

level
3-11
A-4

of

shows
stage

.....

It
10
the

engine.

4500
560

times.

between

4.77

........

can
percent

opera-

max.

be

78

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

CHECK
TANK VENT
AND RELIEF
VALVES

TO VALVE AND.,__
GIMBALACTUATORS

MAIN
FUEL
FUEL
TANK

OXIDIZER
TANK

REGULATOR

ACTUATOR
MIXTURE

THRUST
CHAMBERS
EXCHANGERS
]MAIN OXE
VALVE

START
VALVE
BOTTLES

TANK FILL
DRAIN VALVES

Figure

3-9.-A-4

FUEL (N2H4)
TANK

stage

engine

and

propulsion

5'--

OXIDIZER (N204)
TANK

HELIUM
VALVE

RELIEF

,IUM FILL
VENT VALVE

AND

system

schematic

diagram.

9"

3'--6"

'- HIGH PRESSURE

HELIUM BOTTLES (2)

}SS PSIA

165 PSIA

/
PRESSURANT
DIFFUSER

Figure

_-THRUST CHAMBERS

IHTERSTAGE
CONNECTING
SKIRT

3-I0.-15K

(2)
7'D

THRUST VECTOR CONTROL


GIMBAL ACTUATORS (4]

A-4

stage

propulsion

system

preliminary

design

layouL.

INTRODUCTION

TO

SAMPLE

79

CALCULATIONS

START

SHUTDOWN

PRESSURANT
SHUTOFF
VALVE CLOSES

PRESSURANT SHUTOFF
_.LV E OPENS

PROPELLANT
TANK
PRESSURIZATION

THRUST

"/////////////////;'_

PURGING

_7_PROPELLANT
TANK
PRESSURIZATION
TERMINATES

CHAMBER

THRUST

CHAMBER

I
_/7_

OXIDIZER
"/t OPENS

VALVE

OXIDIZER

VALVE

CLOSES

I I I
_FUEL

VALVE OPENS

_.

FUEL

I
THRUST LEVEL AND
MIXTURE RATIO
CONTROL ACTIVATES

THRUST BUILD-UP
MAIN STAGE

I I

THRUST
LEVEL AND
MIXTURE
CONTROL DEACTIVATES

I I

AND

DECAYS
THiUST

0,5

1.0

15

2.0

2.5

3.0

SECONDS
Figure

VALVE CLOSES

0.5

II

1.5

I.O

SECONDS
3-II.-A-4

stage

engine

operational

sequence.

2.0

?_,5

RATIO

_L_=41_o '__ _._rT

Chapter

And

Design
Other

While the proud designers


of the various subsystems of a rocket engine each consider
their
product as "the heart of the engine,"
the thrust
chamber assembly
undeniably
embodies the essence of rocket propulsion:
the acceleration
and
ejection of matter, the reaction
of which imparts
the propulsive
force to the vehicle.
The designer's goal is essentially
to accomplish
this with
a device of maximum performance,
stability
and
durability,
and of minimum size, weight, and
COSt.
The design of thrust chambers
is one of the
more complex subjects
in the field of liquid propellant rocket engineering.
This is primarily due
to the fact that the basic processes,
especially
the combustion
within the thrust chamber, are
comparatively
difficult
to define and to study
analytically.
Thus, during most engine development programs,
a major effort must be expended
toward the design and development
of the thrust
chamber.
A rational approach to this effort is
attempted
here.

4.1

THE BASIC
ELEMENTS

THRUST

CHAMBER

The thermodynamic
processes
governing the
generation
of thrust within a thrust chamber have
been treated in chapter I. The primary function
of the thrust chamber is to convert the energy of
propellants
into thrust.
In a liquid bipropellant
rocket engine, this process
is characterized
by
the following basic functional
steps:
1. The liquid propellants,
at their proper mixture ratio, are injected
into the combustion chamber through orifices
in an injector,
as jets at
velocities
ranging from 20 to 150 feet per second.
These jets either impinge to form a mixed droplet spray, or run straight
into the chamber hot
gas as a series of droplets.
Part of the combustion reaction may already take place in the liquid
state.

Of Thrust
Combustion

IV

Chambers
Devices

2. The droplets
are subsequently
vaporized
by heat transfer from the surrounding
gas.
The
size and velocity of the droplets
change continuously during their entrainment
in the combustion
gas flow.
3. The vaporized
propellants
are mixed rapidly, further heated and promptly reacted at their
stoichiometric
mixture ratio where ever they are
formed, thus effecting
a continuous
increase
of
the gaseous
mass flow rate within the combustion chamber.
This gas reaction
is further aided
by the high-speed
diffusion
of active molecules
or atoms.
The combustion
is essentially
complete upstream of the chamber throat, when all
liquid droplets
have been vaporized.
Under certain conditions,
shock and detonation
waves may
be generated
by local disturbances
in the combustion front, possibly
caused by instability
of
mixing process
and propellant
flow prior to reaction. These effects may trigger sustained
pressure oscillations
at certain
frequencies
within
the thrust chamber, resulting
in destructive
combustion instability.
A major portion of the design and development
effort, therefore,
is directed
toward achievement
of stable combustion.
4. As the gaseous products
of the combustion
process
pass toward and through the throat, they
are accelerated
to sonic, and then to supersonic,
velocities
within the diverging
nozzle section,
and are finally ejected to the rear.
The basic elements
of a thrust chamber required for its function,
include a combustion
chamber section,
an expansion
nozzle section,
an injector,
an ignition device (for nonhypergolic
propellant
combinations),
propellant
inlets and
distributing
manifolds,
and interconnecting
surfaces for, component
and thrust mounts.
The construction
of the various thrust chamber elements
depends largely on their specific
operational
function.
However, low weight and simplicity,
which make manufacturing
easier,
are two important factors to be considered
at all times.
81

82

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

Figures

4-1

and

4-2 illustrate

a typical

liquid

bipropellant rocket engine thrust chamber


bly. The

illustrated thrust chamber

composed

of four major subassemblies

elements;

namely, thrust chamber

liquid oxygen dome,


The

assem-

assembly

is

or basic

body, injector,

body

into

the

subassembly

is of a

injector

passages,

and

injector
orifices
tion zone.
The
made

Other

in which the combustion

rowing toward a throat; and a bell-shaped, ex-

the

panding nozzle section through which

central

wall of this chamber

body

is constructed of nickel

LOX

The

thrust

tubes, of 0.012-inch wall thickness, are of

rectangular cross section of varying area, to


conform to the thrust chamber

shape.

This con-

struction permits simple thrust chamber

cooling

during operation, by flowing fuel through the


tubes which form the chamber

wall.

The fuel,

under pressure, enters the thrust chamber

body

at the fuel manifold inlet and is distributed to


alternate thrust-chamber
down

tubes.

toward the thrust chamber

It then flows
nozzle exit

where the fuel return manifold reverses the flow

"x\

..&..C

C_,GE,.

Ja.<j"

Figure

4-1.-Thrust

chamber

as

steel.

tension

were

(liquid

pressure

bands,

all made

oxygen)

through
within

oxygen

passages

of

enters

a screened
the

dome

and

are

the

operating

dimensions
similar

characteris-

of a hypothetical

to the

one

shown

in figure

4-1:
1. Propellants
........................
2. O;F mixture ratio ...................

LOX:'RP-1
2.80

3. Characteristic
velocity,
c*, ft/sec ....
4. Thrust coefficient,
CI (sea level) .....
5. Specific
impulse
(ls)tc (sea level),
sec ..............................

5400
1.489

6.
7.
8.
9.

Total propellant
flow rate, lb/sec .....
Thrust (sea level), lb ...............
Chamber pressure
(injector
end), psia
Chamber pressure
(nozzle
stagnation),
psia .............................

249
402
100000
. 520
480

SC_E_'r'

;C

assembly.

fuel

4-2).

principal

chamber

stainless

such

distributed

liquid

following

and

is

radial
the

chamber
combusof this chamber

or 347

oxidizer

flows
the

through

and outriggers

under

and

(fig.

The
tics

dome
to the

orifices

brazing, and retained by external tension bands.

steel

The

port

then
into

finally

members,

rings,

directly

tubes running longitudinally, joined by silver

of 4130

steel.

fuel

screen

into the thrust


fuel manifolds

structural

4130

bustion gases are expelled (fig.4-1). The

The
fuel

venturi shape, consisting of a cylindrical section

the com-

tubes.

an injector

stiffening

occurs; a section nar-

return

through

are

and igniter.

thrust chamber

ROCKET ENGINES

Figure

4-2.-Thrust

chamber

injector.

83

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

I0.
11.

Average gas specific


heat ratio (y) ....
Combustion
chamber cross-section
area, in 2 .........................

16.
17.
18.
19.

the

244

(above
Combustion
chamber length,
in .......
(injector
Characteristic
chamber length,
L*, in
Overall
thrust chamber length,
in .....
Design contraction
area ratio, ec ......
Design expansion
area ratio, e ........

the throat)
28.5
to throat)
. 38
73
1.60:1
8:1

The

thrust

chamber

plate,

inner

passages,

of 4130

and

below

the

bolts.

body

rubber

are

thrust

injector

chamber

has

the

the

main

are

kept

through

the

rings.

ignition
from

orifices

lants

impinge

zone

in a like-on-like
are

arranged

orifices
distance

between

impingement

port.

are

so as

to effect

planes

made

their

or orifice
two

(multiplanar

impingement

2014-T6
the
the
face.

oxygen

dome

aluminum-alloy

inlet
for the liquid
thrust-chamber-to-vehicle
The

flanges

is

die

of the

liquid

chamber

these

discussed

use

for design

them

to the

engine

which

was

discussed

in section
the

design,

parameters

their

which

of thrust

discussing
the
and

systems

details

following

illustrates

calculations

by applying

of the

in chapter

Alpha

vehicle

III.

Impulse,

ts

(sec)

equations

1-31

and

1-31c:

c*Ct

Wtc

oxy-

The

in-

overall

propel-

was

specific

on

impulse

quality

learned

of the
earlier,

generated
tures."

for what

Characteristic

Inother

figure

indicates

thrust-chamber
it shows

"running

the
design.

how

much

propellant

As

thrust

is

expendi-

From

Velocity,

equation

c* (ft/sec)

1-32a:

separa-

propellants,

c* = [(y,

(4-1)

R, (Tc)ns)

in different
as

opposed

to

Assuming

a single-piece,

forging.

oxygen.

been

Before

thrust

selection
liquid

has

I.

parameters

efficiency

uniplanar).
The

of the
the

(ls)tc-

a 0.416-inch

propellants.

for the

of chapter

Specific

a 40 included

impingement

PERFORMANCE

primary

angles

different

wires

exit.

valve

oxygen

for both

impingement

tions

with

significance

disk

The

the

and

nozzle

CHAMBER

alterfuel

The

in pairs,

The

From

Liquid

(liquid

centerlines

from

combustion

fuel).

the

firing.

from

signal

flows

rings.

thrust-chamber

angle,

designs,

inlet

that

THRUST

firing

for one

each

oxidizer

fuel

fuel

on

injector

each

an igniter

fuel

cen-

It is designed
after

is

by

PARAMETERS

distribution

remaining

through

summarizes

fuel

fed

Fuel

so angled

connected

igniter

which

and

a central

pattern

and

are

from

in the

oxygen

The

fed
the

are

the

specifi-

surface

be replaced

an electrical

of actual

of

in the

through

through

separately
an

liquid

ring,

and

emerges

jection

elaborate

It receives

injector

joint.

must

operation

Fuel

by an

and

1.3

rings

and

alternate

outermost
ring,

is

through
gen

orifices

only

chamber

thrust

pyrotechnic

copper

systems.

separate
feeding

which

to permit

of a threaded

start

and

with

asbestos

designed

pyrotechnic

to the

high-strength

provided

is

gasket

with

elevated-temperature

fired

centrally

means

4.2

manifold

made

of gasket

electrically

secured

or influence

type,

strips

and

express

installation.

injection

propellant

inner

is

concentric

system,

nate

face
igniter

20 circular

contain

hole

sur-

with

0-ring

The

It is

injector

type

for cryogenic

and radial

fuel

by a spiral-wound

applications.

orifices.

for compatibility

A threaded

of the

dome

of the

is

sealed

stainless-steel

This

cally

nickel-plated

at the

between

selected

(RP-1).

with

oxygen

seals

4-2)

circular

to drilled

steel

in position

liquid

The

chamber

ter

held

(fig.

with

leading

constructed
faces,

injector

honeycombed

are

of 304

fillers.

Throat area, in 2 ....................


Nozzle exit area, in 2 ................
Combustion
chamber volume, in 3 ......

round

injector

made

(at injector)
140
1120
5820

12.
13,
14.
15.

1.233

It also
attachment
oxygen

the

It provides
serves
interdome

as

gas

band.

From

on the

temperature

selected

the

been

properties

temperature
and

that
has

there

has
propellant

propellant

made,

(y, R) will
on,

and

it can
fall

c* almost

of the

gases.

a theoretical
combination.

be

mixture

ratio

expected

that

into

a known

entirely

depends

Obviously,
maximum
How

for a
close

this

84

DESIGN OF LIQUID

to this maximum
the
pends
on influences
in chapter
illustrate
bustion

chamber
discussed

II.

Figures

this.

It is

Other

ties,

seen

further

affect

overall

that

vehicle
the

ess

depends

mixture

bulk

densi-

may

ratio

from

the

chosen

performance

design

configurations.

calculation

methods

have

cause

*-

g =g

_o

_m
a:_J
_m

25

g_d 5

zo

for optithese

combustion

design

assembly,

maxi-

Within

of the
on the

at com-

sizes,

as

Typical

4-6

than

as

performance.

quality

chamber

lower

tank

of the

and

ROCKET ENGINES

well

deratio

c* peaks

such

vehicle

boundaries,
greatly

4-5,

somewhat

adjustments

a thrust

4-4,

considerations,

which

mum

4-3,

temperatures

mum.

will operate
for mixture

PROPELLANT

proc-

efficiency

in particular

of

the

_ _ 6ooo
-u
2 z _ _
_o=E

5o00

injector.
u

I _oo 5

3000

/
Thrust

Coefficient,

From

CI (dimensionless)

equation

1-33a:
1 25

C(=

f(),,

e, Pa)

..

i30

,.o-, I

-4-'

(4-2)

",o
K-120

Let

us assume

generation
effects
has

been

thrust

were

determined.
(y),

the

on

the

determines
ambient

(Pa).

design

I.

rations

The

which

equate

combination

r w WIp/

35

Wf

4-3.-Theoretical

ffrozen

composition),

02/RP-1
(Pc)ns

combustion
= I000

data

psia.

will
and

stagnation

pressures

combustion

gas
and

the

the

of
on theo-

and the applias explained


combus-

thermochemical
heat

and

compu-

of reaction

the

rise

of the

and

_w
-_ _
_

in enthalpy

and
(Pc)ns,

4-6.

For

the

values

(Tc)ns,

heat

given

chamber-nozzle

ratio

for the

molecular
), are

plotted

against
the O/F mixture
ratio rw. Performance
correction
factors
are determined
by the theoretiassumptions

._
_w

Typical
propellant
composition
are pre-

temperature
specific

based

propellant

from

4-3 through

combinations

cal

R&TIO,

_ which

calculation
is

data
factors

gases.
at frozen

in figures

_,

Figure

chamber,

(Pe/(Pc)ns)

theoretical

derived

propellant

weight

thrust
nozzle,

the

combustion
correction

of the combustion
combustion
data
sented

Z.5

gas

remaining

(mainly

ratio

practice,

are

propellant

of the

performance

propellant
of certain
data

a given

2:
MIXTURE

for c*,

of the

divergent

I
15

the

Calculation

chamber

in chapter

with

geometry

pressure

thrust

tion

nozzle

the

In actual

retical
cation

of the

of energy

process,

summarized

Then,

pressure

Performance

just

functions

those

depend

performance

combustion

performance

generating

essentially

the

the

of which

property

the

that

through

from

earlier

test

data,

as

MXTOR

Figure

4-4.-Theoretical
(Irozen

composition),

Rn7,O,

r w wo/

02/H

wf

2 combustion

(Pc )ns = 800

psia.

data

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

been

83O0

demonstrated

(1-3).

The

trate
_:li

the

more

by

sample

sample

specific

calculation

calculations

illus-

approaches.

8100

Sample

Calculation

Determine
/
-

moo

(ls)_c

7eoo

"too

_,

design

engine

of the
750K

A-1

O/F
8

Stage

":

(b)

A-2

O/F

]
25

35

45

MIXTUR

_5

I t
65

Ir RATIO,

75

S5

r w Wo/

95

_05

1_5

Stage

4-5.-Theoretical

F_/H

composition),

2 combustion

(Pc)as

1000

data,

figure

ratio,

_= 14.

Engine:
thrust

ratio,

5.22;

expansion

chamber

(Pc)us,

combustion

800

data,

area

figure

ratio,

(--40.

Solutions

data
psia

: 1 O0 psia.

A-1

From

Stage

figure

and

Engine:
4.3

for LOJRP-1

a mixture

ratio

derived

at (Pc)us

of 2.35,

values

are

for the

(Tc)ns

: 6000 F or 6460

the

chamber

= 1000

following
product

gases:

R,

_ :22.5
<m

chamber

(Pc)us,

area

LO_/LHa;

nozzle

with

Wf

(a)

(frozen

thrust

combustion

propellant

4-4;

vehicle,

2.35;

expansion

mixture

psia;

Figure

ratio,

Propellants,

and

Engine:

nozzle

150K

I 3S

Ct,
of the

parameters:

LOa/I{P-1;

propellant

4-3;

2ooo
o

design

mixture

psia;

of c*,

chambers
Alpha

assumed

Propellants,

values

thrust

hypothetical

following
(a)

(4-1)

the

for the

stages

7-too

the

_z

earlier

following

85

lb,/tool,

y:

1.222

Substitute

into

Theoretical

equation

(1-32a):

c* - _r32'2

x 1.222

X 6460
0.7215

x 1544/22.5

: 5810

.:

This value
ure 4-3.
For

a good

design,

_,oo

and

for c* can

the

frozen

also

be derived

combustion

chamber

c* correction

factor

composition

will

ft/sec

from
and

fig-

injector

for LO_/RP-1

be about

0.975.

/-'Y
o_
"_

w//

Fd

t25

8Q

Design

For
value
---..
05

06

07

09

09

MIXTUR|

Figure
data

4-6.-Theoretical
(frozen

composition),

kO
RATIO,

_l

k3

t2

t w W4/

N_O_/NaH
(Pc)us

_4

c* = 5810

y= 1.222,
of 1.768

x 0.975

e= 14,
can

= 5660

a theoretical

be derived

ft/sec

vacuum

from

figure

CI

1-11:

,u_
L5

Wf

_ combustion
= 1 O0 psia.

ePa
Theoretical

Ct at sea

level:

(C/)vac

= 1.768

(Pc)as

14 x 14.7
1000

- 1.562

86

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Sea level Ct can


tion (1-33a), with
With effective
all Cf correction
frozen composition
Design

sea level

From equation

Design

also be calculated
using equathe aid of equation (1-20).
nozzle contour design, an overfactor of 0.98 for LO2/RP-1
can be used.
Cf= 1.562 0.98= 1.531

(1-31c):

sealevel

5660x 1.531
= 270 sec
82.2

(Is)tc-

(b) A-2 Stage Engine:


From figure 4-4 for LO2/LH:
at (Pc)ns = 800
psia and a O/F mixture ratio of 5.22, the following values are derived for the chamber product
gases:
(Tc)ns

= 5580 F or 6040 R,
= 12 lb/mole,

y= 1.213

4.3

THRUST
LAYOUT

CHAMBER

After major thrust chamber operating


parameters such as type of propellants,
thrust level,
chamber pressure,
C f, c*, and Is have been established
from engine system requirements
and
performance
calculations,
one of the fundamental
dimensions
of the thrust chamber, the throat
area At, can be readily derived (eq. (1-33)).
The
throat area At or throat diameter
D t usually is
the starting point of a thrust chamber configuration layout.
The combustion
chamber and nozzle
section are commonly designed
as an integral
thrust chamber body.
For light weight and ease
of manufacture,
thrust chambers will have the
general shape of a pressure
vessel
with wall
surfaces
of rotation and smooth contours.

Combustion

Chamber

The combustion
Substitute

into equation

Theoretical

c* =

(1-32a):

X/32.2 x 1.213 6040 x 1544/12


0.717
= 7670 ft/sec

Based on experimental
data, a c* correction
factor can be assumed for the LO:/LH2
frozencomposition
data of about 0.975.
Design

Design

vacuum

From equation

Design

vacuum

Cf= 1.876 x 1.01 = 1.895

(1-31c):

(ls)tc

7480 1.895
- 440 sec
32.2

The reader should perform his own calculations for the A-3 and the A-4 engines,
with the
aid of tables 3-4 and 3-5, and figures 4-5 and 4-6.

Volume
chamber

serves

as an enve-

lope to retain the propellants


for a sufficient
period (stay time) to assure
complete mixing and
combustion
before entering the nozzle.
The volume of the combustion
chamber thus has a definite effect on combustion
efficiency.
The theoretical required chamber volume is a function of
the mass flow rate of the propellants
and their
average density,
and of the stay time needed for
efficient
combustion.
The relationship
can be
expressed
by the following equation:

c* = 7670 x 0.975 = 7480 ft/sec

For ),= 1.213, _=40, a theoretical


vacuum Cf
value of 1.876 can be derived from figure 1-11.
Cf can also be calculated
using equations (1-33a)
and (1-20). With effective
nozzle contour design,
an overall Cf correction
factor value of 1.01 can
be used for LO2/LH2
frozen-composition
data:

CONFIGURATION

Vc = WtcVts

(4-3)

where:
Vc
/tc
V
ts

=chamber volume, ft 3
= propellant
mass flow rate, lb/sec
=average specific
volume, fta/lb
=propellant
stay time, sec

A useful parameter,
the characteristic
length L*
(commonly pronounced
"L-star"),
can be used to
specify the propellant
stay time in the combustion chamber.
L* is defined as the ratio of
chamber volume to nozzle throat area, and can be
expressed

by the following

L* _

Vc
At

equation:
VitcVts
At

(4-4)

87

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

Since the value of At is in nearly direct proportion to the product of ')/tc and V, L* is essentially a function of is. The effect of L* on c* in
an experimental
combustion
chamber is shown in
figure 4-7. The c* value increases
with L* to an
asymptotic
maximum.
Increasing
L* beyond a
certain point tends to decrease
overall engine
system performance
because
of the following:
(1) Larger L* results in higher thrust chamber
volume and weight.
(2) Larger L* creates more surface area in
need of cooling.
(3) Larger L* increases
friction losses at the
chamber walls.
In actual design practice,
optimization
analyses
will determine
the minimum possible
combustion
chamber L* consistent
with efficient
combustion.
Under a given set of operating
conditions,
such as type of propellants,
mixture ratio, chamber pressure,
injector design,
and chamber geometry, the value of the minimum required
L* can
only be evaluated
by actual firings of experimental thrust chambers.
L* values of 15 to 120
inches
values

for corresponding
propellant
stay-time
of 0.002-0.040
second have been used

1
{Pc]n==

.)
to

_
rr

u.

275

NzH4-UDMH
RATIO

190
I::'SIA.

EC=2.O0

5800

5600

/
_5._oo
>

uJ 5200
I0

20

30

40

50

CHAMBER CHARACTERISTICLENGTH( Le) IN.


Figure

4-7.-Effect
6[ L* on c* value
mental thrust chamber.

4-1.-Recommended

Characteristic
Length
lant Combinations

of experi-

Combustion
(L*) for Various

Propellant
combination

Chlorine trifluoride/hydrazine-base
fuel..
Liquid fluorine/hydrazine .............
Liquid fluorine/liquid hydrogen (GH_
injection) ..........................
Liquid fluorine/liquid hydrogen (LH 2
injection_ ..........................
Hydrogenperoxide/RP-I
(including
catalyst bed) .......................
Nitric acid/hydrazine-base fuel ........
Nitrogen tetroxide/hydrazine-hase
fuel..
Liquid oxygen/ammonia ...............
Liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen (GH2
injection) ..........................
Liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen (LH 2
injection) ..........................
Liquid oxygen/RP-1 ..................

Combustion
in

various thrust chamber designs.


Typical
L*
values for different
propellants
are given in
table 4-1. With At and minimum required
L*
established,
the required combustion
chamber
volume Vc can be calculated
by equation
(4-4).

NZ041
50-50
O/F
MIXTURE

TABLE

Chamber
Propel-

Combustion
chamber
characteristic
length (L*), m.
30-35
24-28
22-26
25-30
60-70
30-35
30-35
30-40
22-28
30-40
4@50

Chamber Shape

As can be seen from equation


(4-3), the stay
time ts is independent
c; the combustion
chamber
geometry.
Theoretic:ally,
for a given required
volume, the chamber can be of any shape.
In
actual design, however,
the choice of the combustion chamber configuration
is limited.
In a
long chamber with a small cross section,
higher
nonisentropic
gas flow pressure
losses
will result as explained
in chapter I. This approach
also dictates
a longer thrust chamber space envelope and imposes certain
space limitation
on
the injector design to accommodate
the necessary number of injector holes.
With a short
chamber of large cross section,
the propellant
atomization
or vaporization
zone occupies
a
relatively
large portion of the chamber volume,
while the mixing and combustion
zone becomes
too short for efficient
combustion.
Other factors,
such as heat transfer,
combustion
stability,
weight, and ease of manufacturing,
are to be
considered
in determining
the final combustion
chamber configuration.
Three geometrical
shapes which have been
used m combustion
chamber design are shown in
figure 4-8. While the spherical
and the nearspherical
chambers were used in earlier European

88

__

--

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

designs,
the cylindrical
chamber has been used
most frequently
in the United States.
The spherical
or nearly-spherical
chamber, as
compared to the cylindrical
one of the same volume, offers the advantage
of less cooling surface
and weight.
A sphere has the smallest
surfaceto-volume ratio.
For equal strength of material
and chamber pressure,
the structural
walls of the
spherical
chamber are about half the thickness
of
the walls of a cylindrical
chamber.
However, the
spherical
chamber is more difficult
to manufacture and has poorer performance
under most circumstances.
For these practical
reasons,
the
design details
of the cylindrical
combustion
chamber will be treated in this book. Several

THROAT

/NOZZLE

novel thrust chamber designs will also be discussed.


In the design layout of the cylindrical
combustion chamber of a given At and L*, the value
of the contraction
area ratio, (ec =(Ac/At))
can
be optimized
through careful studies of the following factors:
(1) Combustion
performance
in conjunction
with the injector design
(2) Chamber gas flow pressure
drop
(3) Chamber wall cooling requirements
(4) Combustion
stability
(5) Weight
(6) Space envelope
(7) Ease of manufacturing
For pressurized-gas
propellant
feed, lowthrust en_ne
systems contraction
area ratio
values of 2 to 5 have been used.
For most turbo-

pump propellant
feed, high thrust and high chamengine systems
lower ratio values
THRUST--CHAMBER ber pressure
of 1.3 to 2.5 are employed.
The reader is also
referred to section
1.2 chapter I, "The Gas-flow
Processes
in the Combustion
Chamber and the
AXIS
Nozzle."

IN_

The basic elements


of a cylindrical
combustion chamber are identified
in figure 4-9. In
design practice,
it has been arbitrarily
defined
that the combustion
chamber volume includes
the

COMBUSTION
CHAMBER

IN_

space between injector face I-I and the nozzle


throat plane II-II. The approximate
value of the
combustion
chamber volume can be expressed
by
the following equation

NOZZLE

Vc = A_ [Lcec + _-A-_Cot
_-NEAR SPHERICAL
COMBUSTION
CHAMBER

INJECTOR

(4-5)

THROAT

FACE

[-CHAMBER

T_T

O(ec_/3 -1)]

NOZZLE

DIA

AREA

"

n"
Dc

Ac

,---

NOZZLE

INJECTOR

HRUSTC.___.HHAMBER
CHAMBE:"

AXIS
[

CYLINDRICAL

OIA

AREA

Dt
A t

SECTION

z_LENGTH

CYLINDRICAL
COMBUSTION
CHAMBER
Figure

4-8.-Frequently
used geometrical
[or combustion
chambers.

Lc

CHAMBER

CONTRACTION
AREA

shapes

Figure

RATIO

Ac
(

= A'-'_T

4-9.-Elements
of basic cylindrical
bustion chamber.

com-

DESIGNOF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

The total

surface

area of the combustion

chamber walls excluding


injector
face can be
approximated
by the following
expression:

Total

Nozzle

area =2Lc_cAt

Expansion

It was learned

+ csc 9(ec - 1)At (4-6)

Area Ratio
earlier

that

with all other

parameters
fixed, in particular
chamber pressure,
there is only one optimum nozzle expansion
area
ratio for a given altitude
or, more specifically,
ambient pressure.
Except for those systems
which start in vacuum, ambient pressure
will
have to be considered.
This is especially
true
for boosters
which start at or near sea-level
conditions.
It is the ultimate purpose of a rocket engine
to lift vehicles
to altitudes.
Inherently,
then,
ambient pressure
will not be a constant
(except
for high-altitude
starts,
as mentioned).
It is,
therefore,
extremely
important
for the designer to
know the trajectory
of the vehicle to be propelled
or, more specifically,
its altitude-versus-time
characteristics.
With this information,
the designer is in a position
to make a first, optimizing
selection
of a nozzle expansion
area ratio, for
best results
throughout the entire trajectory.
As
shown earlier,
area ratio will be truly optimum
for only one specific
altitude.
The optimization
for ambient pressure
then is essentially
an
averaging
process.
Other considerations
usually cause the designer to deviate from the "paper optimum" for
the nozzle expansion
area ratio.
Some of the
most common are: weight, size, ease of manufacturing,
handling,
and cooling (heat transfer)
considerations.

Nozzle

89

The selection
of an optimum nozzle shape for
a given expansion
area ratio is generally
influenced by the following design considerations
and goals:
(1) Uniform parallel
axial gas flow at the
nozzle exit for maximum momentum
vector
(2) Minimum separation
and turbulence
losses
within the nozzle
(3) Shortest possible
nozzle length for minimum space envelope,
weight, wall friction losses,
and cooling requirements
(4) Ease of manufacturing
In actual design practice,
any abrupt change or
discontinuity
in the nozzle wall contour should
be avoided to eliminate
the possibility
of shock
waves or turbulence
losses.
Theoretically,
the
nozzle throat is simply the unique plane of minimum cross-section
area.
In practice,
a wellrounded throat section is employed.
Only at the
nozzle exit plane is a sharp edge used because
a rounded one would permit overexpansion
and
flow separation.
1. Conical

Nozzle

In early rocket engine applications,


the conical nozzle,
which had proved satisfactory
in
most respects,
was used almost exclusively.
The advantages
of a conical nozzle are ease of
manufacturing
and flexibility
of converting
an
existing
design to higher or lower expansion area
ratios without major redesign
of the nozzle contour.
The configuration
of a typical conical nozzle
is shown in figure 4-10. The nozzle throat section has the contour of a circular arc with a
radius R ranging from 0.5 to 1.5 times the throat
radius Rt. The half angle of the nozzle convergent cone section can range from 20 to 45 . The

Shape

Most rocket nozzles


are of the convergingdiverging
De Laval type.
Since the flow velocity
of the gases in the converging
section of rocket
nozzle is relatively
low, any smooth and wellrounded convergent
nozzle section will have
very low energy losses.
By contrast,
the contour
of the diverging nozzle section is very important
to performance,
because
of the very high flow
velocities
involved.

RI

,.
Figure

:4-I O.-Conical

y-os
nozzle

contour.

9O

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

divergent
cone half angle a varies from approximately 12 to 18 . The length of the conical
nozzle section can be expressed
by the equation

Rt(_e - 1) + R(sec
Ln=
tan a

/ / /

E.

L_E

_-c:,,-_,.

(4-7)

-,---__

;_= _ (1 + cos a)

(4-8)

where a = half angle of the conical nozzle.


For an ideal nozzle,
A would be unity.
For a
conical nozzle with a = 15 and h =0.983, the exit
gas momentum or the exit velocity
will be 98.3
percent of the ideal nozzle exit velocity
calculated by equation
(1-18).
The value of the vacuum thrust coefficient
of a nozzle is in direct
proportion to the thrust generated
by the nozzle,
or to the nozzle exit gas velocity.
Therefore,
the theoretical
vacuum thrust coefficient
(neglecting friction and other flow losses)
of a conical
nozzle with 15 half angle will be 98.3 percent
of the ideal nozzle thrust coefficient
calculated
by equation (1-33a).
2. Bell Nozzle
For increased
performance
and shorter length,
bell-shaped
nozzles
have been developed.
This
nozzle design employs a fast expansion
or radial
flow section in the initial divergent
region,
which then leads over to a uniform, axially
directed
flow at the nozzle exit.
The wall con-

zle.

with uniformly parallel


axial gas flow. The
value of h can be expressed
by the following
equation:

enough

PLANE
L_

[:

a - 1)

The conical nozzle with a 15 divergent


half
angle has become almost a standard,
as it is a
good compromise
on the basis of weight, length,
and performance.
Since in a conical nozzle certain performance
losses occur as a result of the nonaxial component of the exhaust gas velocity,
a correction
factor h is applied for the calculation
of the exit
gas momentum.
This factor or thrust efficiency
is the ratio between the exit gas momentum of
the conical nozzle and that of an ideal nozzle

tour is changed gradually


shocks will not form.

EXIT
[

so that

oblique

Figure 4-11 shows the contour of a bell nozA circular arc of selected
radius R, is

/ _/
_,

1
Figure

.....,
C_CrERIS_r

ic

._
4-11.-Bell

nozzle contour.

chosen for the nozzle contour MT upstream of the


throat.
Contour TNE is the diverging
portion of
the nozzle.
The initial expansion
occurs along
contour TN; contour NE turns the flow over to a
direction
nearer to axial.
For design convenience, the contour TN is also a circular arc, with
a smaller radius R2.
For those familiar with compressible
flow
theories,
it is noted that, using transonic
flow
analyses,
a constant-Mach-number
line TO can
be defined at the throat.
Given the flow condition along TO and the solid boundary TN, a
kernel flow field TNKO can be generated
by the
method of characteristics
developed
in gas dynamics.
The kernel of the rocket nozzle contour
is defined as that portion of the supersonic
flow
field determined
entirely by throat conditions.
The last right characteristic
line NK of kernel
TNKO, and thus the location
of the point N along
contour TN, is to be determined
by specific
design criteria.
The location of the end point E along contour
NE is defined by the given nozzle expansion
area ratio and nozzle length (distance
between
throat and exit plane).
Then the right characteristic line NK can be determined
by satisfying
the
following conditions
concurrently:
(1) A control surface PE can be generated
between the point E and a selected
point
P along the line NK
(2) Mass flow across
PE equals the mass
flow across NP
(3) Maximum thrust by the nozzle is attained.
By selecting
points P', P", etc., along line
NK, a series of control surfaces
P'E', P"E",
etc., can be generated
to define points E I, E",
etc., along the contour NE. Calculations
for the
nozzle contour can be effectively
performed by a
computer.

91

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

8,\

IO0

99

.J

-_ 98
pZ
_J
{J
nr
bJ
O.

,jo POINT

NOZZLE
AX*S

////

i
I,

Ln

THaT
97

Figure

section

9_

with

T to the
60

70

90

80

I_

Lf

exit

NOZZLE
CONICAL

Figure

LENGTH
NOZZLE

4-12.-Thrust

length.

BASED
ANY

ON

for

conical

ANGLE

RATIO

versus

comparison:

nozzle,

A 15 = HALF

AREA

efficiency

(Shown

ening

(Lf)

WITH

bell

effect

increasing

lowing

nozzle

Rt from

a parabola

from

the

design

data

are

Commonly,
nozzle

nozzles.

used

For

percent
exit

an equivalent
is

bell

plane)

Throat
Axial

length

of the

exit

plane,

Ln,

diameter,

fractional

angle.)

area,

nozzle

the

the

of an

between
or 0.8

nozzle

below

to specify

length

(distance

80 percent,

conical

radius

15 half-angle

a standard

instance,

is

half-angle

as

having

throat,

the

and

(3)

Expansion

bell

(4)

Initial

(5)

and

of a 15

area

shows
the thrust
nozzle
length

nozzle,

the

fol-

Dr, inches
nozzle

inches

length
area

wall

throat

Nozzle

exit

The

wall

angles,

4-14

as

a function

from

throat

(or the

Lf based

to

desired

on

a 15

ratio

angle

of the

parabola,

On,

wall
On and
of the

angle,

0e,

Oe are

degrees

shown

expansion

in figure

area

ratio

E.

expansion

ratio.
Figure
4-12
versus
fractional

to the

degrees

80-

same

throat

nozzle)

coni-

throat

of that

of a specific

(2)

conical

cal

the
there

required:

(1)

of short-

half

of 0.382

N and

E.
For

FRACTIONAL

bell

contour.

a radius

point

of

approximation

nozzle

,,,o//
/
/

96

4-13.-Parabolic

efficiency
h
LI for conical

40

L/= toO%
Lf= 70%

and

bell
As

nozzles.

may be

seen,

approximately
contribute
sidering

3.

nozzle

80 percent

weight

with

Approximation

convenient

nozzle

in figure
upstream
a radius
contour

when

con-

penalties.

way

of Bell Nozzles
to design

4-13.

The

of the
of 1.5

Rt.

is made

a near-optimum-

is through
procedures

gested
by G.VR.
Rao.
The
of a parabolic
approximation
diately

Lf = 80%
L_= 90%
Lp 100%

_5o

beyond

significantly

especially

thrust
bell nozzle
contour
the parabolic
approximation

shown

lengths

do not

to performance,

Parabolic
One

bell

the

__

use of
as sug-

design
configuration
bell nozzle
is
nozzle

throat
The

contour

up of a circular

_ "_
0

section
entrance

EXPANSION

30

20

_0

imme-

T is a circular
divergent

_ _'5.,c
z
E

AREA

40
RATIO

Lf"

60=/=

LI"

70%

Lf = 80%
.f,
90/
Lf, 100%

5O

arc
Figure

4-14.-0n

and
area

Oe as
ratio

function
_.

of expansion

92

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

Optimum nozzle contours


can be approximated
quite accurately
by selecting
the proper inputs.
Although no allowance
is made for different propellant combinations,
experience
has shown that
the effect of specific
heat ratio y upon the contour is small.
A computer program can be readily
set up to perform the calculation.
4. Annular
Based

theorem,

for ideal

ex-

pansion the thrust generated


by a thrust chamber
depends only upon the mass flow conditions
(velocity
and direction)
at the nozzle exit.
In
some nozzle designs,
such as annular nozzles,
the gas flow at the throat is not necessarily
parallel
to the axis, but the exit flow is similar
to that of a conical or bell nozzle and thus produces the same thrust results.
There are two basic types of annular nozzles:
the radial in-flow type (spike nozzle) and the
radial out-flow type (expansion-deflection
or
E-D; reverse-flow
or R-F; and horizontal-flow
or
H-F nozzles).
They are shown in figure 4o15,
together with conventional
conical and bell nozAREA

ENGINES

zles.
For comparison
of the effect of nozzle
type on size, all nozzles
shown are scaled to
the same thrust level, nozzle expansion
area
ratio, and theoretical
nozzle efficiency.
These
nozzles
show potential
of adapting their geometry to space vehicle application,
because shortened nozzles
reduce interstage
structure
weight
and will permit an increase
in payload through
increased
performance
for a given length.
The nozzle expansion
area ratio ( for an
annular nozzle is defined by equation
(4-9):

Nozzles
on the momentum

ROCKET

Projected
area of the
contoured
nozzle wall
Ae-Ap
e:
Throat area
At

(4-9)

where the projected


area of the contoured
nozzle
wall equals nozzle exit plane area Ae, less the
centerbody
projected
area Ap. Another convelent design parameter
for annular nozzles
is the
annular diameter
ratio, Dp/Dt, where Dt is the
throat diameter of an equivalent
circular throat,
and Dp the centerbody
diameter.
Dp/Dt is an index of the annular

RATIO = 36:1
= 9B.3%

The parameter
nozzle design

(ALT}

OF EFFICIENCY
JECTOR
OMBUSTION
HAMBER
INJECTOR
COMBUSTION

HROAT
I_

INJECTOR

rl ..--"- COMBUSTION
JJ'CHAMBER

:
[_
_
'tl X

, T

:i' CONE w.,, '

Dp/D
NOZZLE

LENGTH

= 100%

NOZZLE

LENGTH

= 74.2%

OVERALL

LENGTH

= I00%

OVERALL

LENGTH

= 70%

DIAMETER

= 100%

OVERALL

OVERALL

DIAMETER

= tO0%

"'THROAT

Dp/D

LENGTH

= 41.4%

OVERALL

LENGTH

= 51%

OVERALL

DIAMETER

= 105"/.

COMBUSTION

LENGTH

= 41.4%

OVERALL

LENGTH

= 519=,

OVERALL

DIAMETER

/X_

COMBUSTION

CHAMBER

CHAMBER
{NJECTOR
Ii- I

p---Dp"---'4

;_

R-F
Dp/D

H-F
Dp/D

T = ,5

i1_

t = t0

NOZZLE

LENGTH

= 24,9

NOZZLE

LENGTH

= 14.5

OVERALL

LENGTH

= 21%

OVERALL

LENGTH

= 12 %

OVERALL

DIAMETER

= 150 %

Figure

4-I 5.-Comparison

OVERALL

of nozzle

DIAMETER

shapes.

= 194

T = 1.3

NOZZLE

INJECTOR-,,

THROAT

E-D ' "

I = 1.3

NOZZLE

TH R OAT

j.._D,I._,

5f 'i,!

sPIKE

cOM BUSTION
CHAMBER

j/"-/pD'_
i

i':44--..
"i

T,'

' BELL

INJECTOR

i;;rl_ _../-_l.J Z"

= 102.5 %

93

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

geometry
The

as

compared

to a conventional

contour-calculating

nozzles

are

similar

In a conical

well

below

level

or low-altitude
the

in chapter

overexpansion

low

altitudes.

characteristics,

losses.

As shown

zle

equally

(and

zles),
the

the

back

the

function
lower

are

4-16

back

ambient.

base

pressure

expansion
the

is reached.

through

the

downstream

by

flow

the

following

(i)

The

(2)

The

two

nozzle

the

gases
base

the

Figure

gas
CD,

controlled

of the

are

deflected,

and

local

nozzle
operation

curved-wall
which

of the

turns

inner

shown

the

to some

in wall

distribution
in figure

jet

gases

A typical

for low-altitude

4-16.

This

Because

corn-

CONSTANTI_ACH---k

L.NE
\
TN"OAT
,NJECTO,

performance

AXIS
BODY

wall,

as

4-16.-E-D

nozzle

at low altitude

that

so low

behind
Since

be axial,

the

is

altitude.

of the

separation

case

inner

from

for a conven-

the

the

flow

the

gases

flow

nozzle.
under

figure

4-17.

The
this

ondary

spike

which

flow

secondary

streams.
effect

To

describe

of truncating

is

the
concept

(radial

in-

amount

nozzle

aerodynamic

flow

in

nozzle

a small

between

of

of sec-

base

spike

nozzle

geometric
flow,
is

the
the

param-

the

manner

introduced,
primary
flow
the

end

distri-

shown

nozzle

of secondary

energy

pressure

concept

nozzle

on

up to the

This

the

must

expansion

is also

into

of the

amount

the

spike

of various

this

relative

depending

nozzle

introduced

is a function

occur

wall

utilizes

in figure

point

nozzle.'

annular

region.
Performance

the

nozzle

con-

shown

unaffected

condition

pressure

flow

closure

However,

spike

type),

as

may

may continue

bution

flow

wave

base

nozzle

at the

conditions.

of the

the

the

centerbody,

a shock

ondary

operation.

the

operation

interrelated

Figure

is

flow

becomes

in which
I.

at low
nature

At high-altitude
verges

the

is no

which

is responsible

nozzle.

eters,

PRESSURE_

nozzle,

self-adjusting

there

is a truncated

F,,EE
" SURFACE
NOZZLE

WALL

altitude

wall,

nozzle

aerodynamic

'"_""_'"_

nozzle

spike

of the

nozzle

tional

at the

An improved
NOZZLE WALL _

at high

for the

for improved

Pb

compression

pressure.

turning

typical

jet boundary,

influences

contour,

leads

pressure

is

also

4-17.

increases

wall

pressive

flow.

surface

nozzle
operation.

the

which

Pb which

4-17.-E-D

is

boundary.
Because

, Essu,

throat,

line

DE

WALL

initial

is

to near-axial
stream

of

conditions:

contour

pressure

free

the

gases

boundary

wall

noz-

the centerbody
until this

constant-Mach
of the

....
'------CENTER
BODY

generally

of the

After

.OZZkE

in regu-

and

Downstream

_--SNOCK

noz-

face

of Pb is

the expansion
of the gases
around
shoulder
C will continue
unaffected

"--_B-_]_

of their

role

pressure

__!
FREESTREAMSURFACE

to these

annular

value

_,,/f_-_'_
/_I_

THROAT----x
\

at

for an E-D

at the

The

ambient

ratios,

losses

an important

flow.

area

subject

WALL

__/I

sepa-

explained

to other
Pb

plays

flow

because

not

in figure

nozzle

than

nozzles,

pressure

of the

large

ex-

(sea-

As

in thrust

applicable

centerbody

lating

with

Annular

special

before

_NOZZLE

MACHLINE_

may

ambient

occurs.

results

CONSTANT_

nozzles.
gases

the

wall

I, for nozzles

this

the

operation)

nozzle

nozzle.

for annular

for bell

nozzle,

to pressures
from

to those

or bell

pand
ration

methods

and
and

field

spike

secand

nozzle,

_Source:
AIAA Paper No. 66-828, "Liquid
Rocket
Engines:
Their Status and Their Future"
By S. F.
Iacobellis.

94

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

base
achieved
the

pressure
through

and the base


the secondary

pressure
increase
flow addition

requires
a lengthy,
detailed
discussion;
only the
basic operation
can be presented
here.
The primary flow (high-pressure
gases) which
produces
the major portion of the engine thrust
is exhausted
from an annular-type
combustion
chamber and expands against
the metal surface
of the center tru-_ated-spike
nozzle (fig. 4-18).
The characteriF
of the primary flow field upstream of the basv, shown as region 1 in figure
4-18, are determined
by the annular throat geometry, the nozzle wall contour, and the ambient
pressure.
The annular primary flow continues
to
expand beyond the nozzle surface and encloses
a subsonic,
recirculating
flow field in the base
region (region 2). The pressure
acting on the
nozzle base contributes
additional
thrust to the
nozzle.
When a small amount of secondary
flow is
introduced
into the base (added to the recirculating flow), the base pressure
is increased
further.
As the secondary
flow is increased,
the overall
nozzle efficiency
(considering
the additional
flow) increases
because
of this increase
in base
pressure.
There is a limit to this gain in efficiency, and an optimum secondary
flow exists
for each configuration.
The outer surface of the annular primary flow
is a free-jet boundary, which is influenced
by
ambient pressure.
This ambient pressure
influence on the primary nozzle flow endows this type
of nozzle with altitude
compensation.
In operation at high-pressure
ratios (i.e., altitude
conditions),
the outer free-jet boundary of the primary flow expands
outward, governed
by the
Prandtl-Meyer
turning angle at the throat.
At
low-pressure
ratios (i.e., sea level operation),
the relatively
higher ambient pressure
cornTOR_DJU._Ew

Figure

4-18.-Aerodynamic
spike flow [ield i11usSrated under altitude
conditions.

IDEAL

NOZZLE

(NO

LOSSE!

HIGH-AREA-RATIO
AEROSPIK
E NOZZLE

i,
LL

/" /

L)

/
/

/_

i /

HICa-I-AR

/_

BELL

EA-RATIO

NOZZLE

,'

LU

//SEA'LEVEL

(VACUUM)

OPERATING

RANI

/
SEA

LEVEL

_,t_--

IJ

iI

50

100

I
200

IVACUUMI
OPERATING

RANGE

] K JlJli{
300

500

1000

2000

4000

PRESSURE RATIO (pc,/pa)


Figure

4-19.-Nozzle

presses
the
flow field.
pressure
on
the negative
sure on the

perlormance

comparison.

outer free-jet boundary of the primary


This compression
increases
the static
the nozzle wall and partially
offsets
effect of the higher ambient presback side of the nozzle.
The base

pressure
also is increased
with the higher ambient, because the compressed
primary flow field,
which influences
the base pressure,
has higher
static pressures.
This combination
of flow field
effects provides the altitude
compensation
inherent to the aerodynamic
spike nozzle.
Figure 4-19 presents
the performance
comparison of various nozzle designs.
The nozzle
thrust coefficient
Cf for an ideal nozzle (i.e., a
variable-area-ratio
nozzle having the optimum
expansion
for each chamber pressure
to ambient
pressure
ratio, pc/Pa) is shown together with
those of the high-area-ratio
aerodynamic
spike
and bell nozzle.
As is evident,
the CI curve of
the aerodynamic
spike follows the ideal nozzle
performance
(altitude-compensation),
rather than
dropping off rapidly like the bell design at low
pc/Pa (i.e., sea level) operating points.
M1
nozzles
have a higher CI at a high Pc/Pa (i.e.,
vacuum).
The development
of the annular-nozzle
concept may influence
the design of rocket vehicles,

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

95

especially
in the areas of boattail
structure
and
mission
staging optimization.
The advantages
and disadvantages
of annular nozzles
are summarized as follows:

4-23. The reader is urged to conduct his own


calculations
using the first stage as a guide, and
to compare his results
with those shown.

Advantages
(1) Shortened nozzle length for the same performance, or increased
performance
(higher
expansion
area ratios) for a given length.
(2) Improved performance
at sea level or low
altitudes.
(Annular nozzles
with high
expansion
area ratios can be used for a
single-stage
sea level to vacuum vehicle
mission.)
(3) The relatively
stagnant
region in the center of the nozzle can possibly
be used
for installation
of gas generators,
turbopumps, tanks, auxiliary
equipment,
and
turbine gas discharges.
(4) A segmented
combustion
chamber design
approach can be used, easing development effort (individual
segments
can be
built and tested during the early phases)
and improving combustion
stability.

Solution

Disadvantages
(1) Relatively
because
surface

A-1 Stage Engine:


From sample calculation
Design

sea level

Substitute

Calculation

in some

(4-2)

Lay out the thrust chamber internal configuration (cylindrical


combustion
chamber with bell
nozzle) for the engines on the Alpha vehicle with
the data derived from sample calculation
(4-1)
and the following required chamber thrusts Ftc:
engine:

Ftc

=747000

747 000
At - 1.531 x 1000 = 487 in:

Throat

diameter:

Dt = _=

24.9 in

Rt=_=
Exit diameter:

De

--'-_V/_ -x

Use a combustion
LO2/RP-1
(4-4):

24.9 =93.4

engine:

Ft%= 149500

lb at
altitude

(c) A-3 stage

engine:

Ftc3=

Ib at
altitude

(d) A-4 stage

engine:

Ftc4=

calculations

16000

chamber

application.

volume:

7500 lb at
altitude
and their results

are presented
in the following for the first-stage
engine only. For the other stages,
the calculation results
are summarized
in figures 4-21 to

e= 14

(1-33):

area:

12.45

in

in

93.4
e =---_- = 46.7 in

L* of 45 in for

Substitute

into equation

Vc=487x45=21915cuin

Use a nozzle convergent


half angle of 20 , a
contraction
area ratio ec = 1.6, and a circular arc
of radius R= 1.5Rt, or 18.68 in, for nozzle contour upstream of the throat.
Chamber

diameter:

Dc = _'.'.6x

lb at sea
level

(b) A-2 stage

The detailed

into equation

= 1000 psia;

Throat

Chamber

(a) A-1 stage

C/= 1.531;
(Pc)as

R
high cooling requirements,
of higher heat fluxes and greater
areas to be cooled.

(2) Heavier structural


construction
applications.
(3) Manufacturing
difficulties.

Sample

(4-1):

24.9 =31.5
R
C

Use equation (4-7) to calculate


convergent
cone length
Convergent

in

31,5
=_----=--=15.75

in

the chamber

cone length
_ 12.45 (x/1.6 - 1) + 18.68 (sec
tan 20

20 - 1)

4.515
= 0.---3"64= 12.4 in

96

DESIGN OF LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

INJECTOR
FACE

THRUST
CHAMBER

AXrS

L n = 102.4"

Figure

4-20.-A-I

stage
engine
thrust
(--14,
80% bell,

chamber
L*=45",

internal
(o=1.6.

-"-

configuration

INJECTOR THROAT
FACE
,d

layout:

EXIT
=9.25

b
I

8n=33
N

THRUST

__

_L_

14"R

CHAMBER AXIS

N0=5.94.

De=71"

17.3" - ! _
Figure

4-21.-A-2

stage

Ln =83.6"

engine
_=40,

thrust

75% hell,

chamber,

internal

L*=26",

_c=1.6.

configuration

layout:

4mmmal

k.,

DESIGN

OF

THRUST

CHAMBERS

AND

OTHER

COMBUSTION

97

DEVICES

INJECTOR
FACE

THRUST
CHAMBER

AXIS

Figure

4-22.-A-3

stage

engine
_=35,

thrust
70%

INdECTOR
FACE

chamber,

bell,

L*=28",

internal

configuration

THROAT

EXIT

_1

layout:

_c=2.

Et:46.1,

THROAT
CHAMBER

AXIS

Figure

4-23.-A-4

stage

engine
_=35,

thrust
70%

bell,

chamber,
L*=32",

internal
ec=2.

configuration

layout:

98

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Since

Using the frustrum cone volume equation and


neglecting
the slight rounding of the throat, the
approximate
convergent
cone volume is obtained:

Volume =3 x12.4 [(15.75)2 + (12.45)2 +15.7512.45

the calculations

for the thrust

chamber

configuration
are based on the calculated
design
C[ value which has to be verified by later actual
testing,
a slight change of chamber pressure
is
usually allowed to compensate
for C! deviations
in order to meet the required thrust value.

= 7760 cu in
4.4
Required

volume

for cylindrical
=21 915-

chamber section
7760:14
155 cu in

Required

length

for cylindrical
chamber section
= 14 155/1.6At=
18.17 inches

Distance

from injector
face to throat
= 18.17+ 12.40= 30.57, say 31 inches

Design an "80-percent
bell" nozzle configuration using the parabolic
approximation
procedure.
The nozzle contour downstream
of the throat will
be a circular arc of radius 0.382 Rt, or 4.75
inches.
By definition,
the nozzle length Ln will
be 80 percent of the length for an equivalent
15
half-angle
conical nozzle.
Substitute
into equation (4-7)

Ln=0.8

[12.45

(VIT-1)+4.75
tan 15 (sec

15 - 1!]

= 0.8 x 128 = 102.4

inches

The parabolic
contour wall angles 0, and 0e can
be derived from figure 4-14, for e= 14 and L/=0.8;
On = 27.4 and 0e = 9.8 . The location
of N and E
along the nozzle contour, with respect
to throat
and nozzle axis, can be calculated
Nt =0.382

R: sin On = 2.19 inches

Na = Rt + 0.382 Rt(1 - cos 0n) : 12.99 inches


Et : Ln = 102.4
Ea= Re=46.7

inches
inches

With the aid of the established


coordinates
for
points N and E, and the angles 0_ and 0e, a
parabola can be fitted to complete the contour.
The general layout of the A-1 stage engine thrust
chamber is shown in figure 4-20.
With the aid of
a computer program, more accurate
calculations
of the divergent nozzle contour can be made by
the method of characteristics.

THRUST

Techniques

CHAMBER
and Their

COOLING

Selection

Because of the high combustion


temperatures
(4000 to 6000 F) and the high heat transfer
rates from the hot gases to the chamber wall (0.5
to 50 Btu/in2-sec),
thrust chamber cooling becomes a major design consideration.
For shortduration operation (up to a few seconds),
uncooled chamber walls can be used.
In this case,
the heat can be absorbed by the sufficiently
heavy chamber wall material which acts as a
heat sink, before the wall temperature
rises to
the failure level.
For most longer durationapplications,
a steady-state
chamber cooling system
has to be employed.
One or a combination
of the
following chamber cooling techniques
is often
used:
1. Regenerative
coollng.-Regenerative
cooling is the most widely applied method and utilizes one or possibly
both of the propellants,
fed
througt_ passages
in the thrust chamber wall for
cooling,
before they are injected
into the combustion chamber.
(See par. 4.1 and fig. 4-1.)
2. Dump cooJing.-With
this principle,
a small
percentage
of the propellant,
such as the hydrogen in a LO2/LH2
engine, is fed through passages in the thrust chamber wall for cooling and
subsequently
dumped overboard through openings
at the rear end of the nozzle skirt.
Because of
inherent problems,
this method has only limited
application.
3. Film cooling.-Here,
exposed chamber wall
surfaces
are protected
from excessive
heat with
a thin film of coolant or propellant
which is introduced through manifolded
orifices
in the chamber wall near the injector,
and usually in several
more planes toward the throat.
The method has
been widely used, particularly
for high heat
fluxes, either alone or in combination
with
regenerative
cooling.
4. Transpiration
cooling.-Transpiration
cooling is accomplished
by introducing
a coolant

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

(either gaseous
or liquid propellants)
through
porous chamber walls at a rate sufficient
to
maintain the desired combustion
gas side chamber wall temperature.
This method is essentially
a special type of film cooling and has been
widely used.
5. Ablative
cooling.-In
this process
a sacrifice of combustion-chamber
gas-side
wall material is made by melting and subsequently
vaporizing it to dissipate
heat. As a result,
relatively
cool gases flow over the wail surface, thus
creating
a cooler boundary layer, assisting
the
cooling process.
Ablative cooling has been used
in numerous designs,
initially
mainly for solid
propellant
systems,
but later equally successfully for low Pc, pressure-fed
liquid systems.
6. Radiation
cooling.-_tith
this method, beat
is radiated
away from the surface of the outer
thrust chamber wall.
It has been successfully
applied to low heat flux regions,
such as nozzle
extensions.
The selection
of the best cooling method for
a given thrust chamber depends on many design
considerations.
There are no simple-and-fast
rules.
However, the following are the main factors which influence
the selected
design
approaches:
1. Propellants.-The
properties
of the combustion products,
such as temperature,
specific
heat, specific
weight, viscosity,
etc., have a
direct bearing on the heat transfer rate and in
turn affect the chamber cooling requirements
and
methods.
The cooling properties
of the propellants and their relative
flow rate decide whether
they are suitable
or sufficient
for regenerative
or
film cooling.
Therefore,
in evaluating
a chamber
cooling system, the propellants
involved will be
one of the primary design considerations.
2. Chamber pressure.-High
chamber pressure
is linked with higher combustion
gas mass flow
rates per unit area of chamber cross section and
thus raises the heat transfer
rate.
Combined
regenerative
and film-cooling
methods are usually
employed for the stringent
requirement
of higher
chamber pressure
applications.
3. Propellant
feed system.-The
type of propellant feed used in an engine system
determines the pressure
budget for the system.
In a
turbopump-fed
engine system, more pressure
drop
is usually available
for chamber cooling.
The

99

availability
of this pressure
drop permits the use
of regenerative
cooling which requires
propellant
pressure
sufficient
to force the coolant through
the cooling passage
before entering the injector.
A pressurized-gas-fed
engine system usually has
more stringent
pressure
limitations
and operates
on relatively
low chamber pressures.
This suggests the application
of film, ablative,
or radiation cooling.
4. Thrust chamber configuration.-The
geometric shape of the chamber
affects
local
combustion
gas mass flow rates and wall surface
areas to be cooled.
This influences
the choice
of cooling method.
It can also
arrangements
for regeneratively
wall thrust chambers.
5. Thrust

chamber

limit the design


cooled tubular

construction

material.-The

properties
of the thrust chamber materials
will
affect the cooling system design profoundly.
Strength at elevated
temperature,
combined
with
heat conductivity
properties
of a metal, will
Jetermine
suitability
for regenerative
cooling
systems.
For film-cooled
chambers
higher allowable material working temperatures
are desired
to reduce heat transfer rates and thus film coolant flow rates.
The application
of radiationcooling to a chamber depends largely on the
availability
of high temperature
(3000 F and up)
refractory
alloys.
The success
of ablative
cooling depends entirely on the availability
of suitable composite
plastic
materials.
In practice,
the design of thrust chamber
cooling systems
is a major link in the complete
engine system design.
It cannot be treated independently,
without due consideration
of other
engine system aspects.
For instance,
optimization of the chamber pressure
value for a highperformance
engine system is largely limited by
the capacity
and efficiency
of the chamber cooling system.
In turn, chamber pressure
will affect
other design parameters
such as nozzle expansion area ratio, propellant
feed pressure,
and
weight.
Because
of the complex interrelation
between these factors,
the complete analysis
of
chamber cooling systems
is a specialized
field
and requires thorough knowledge
of heat transfer,
fluid mechanics,
thermodynamics,
and thermal
stresses.
The engine system designer,
therefore,
will enlist the services
of heat transfer
specialists.

100

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Gas-Side

Heat Transfer

One of the primary steps in the design of a


thrustchamber cooling system is the analysisof
the heat transferfrom the combustion gases to
the chamber walls (gas-sideheat transfer).Because of the very high surface velocityof the
gases along the chamber walls, the heat transfer
occurs mainly through forcedconvection; i.e.,
throughthe transferof heat energy resultingfrom
the relativemotion of different
parts of a fluid.
Before the gases can transferheat to the wall,
the heat energy must pass througha layer of
stagnantgas along the wall, calledthe boundary
layer.
The basic correlationforthiscomplicated
convective heat transfercan be expressed by the
followingequation:
q : hg (Taw - Twg)
where
q
= Heat flux or heat transferred
across
stagnant
gas film per unit surface
per unit time, Btu/in2-sec
hg

=Gas-side
heat transfer
in2-sec-deg
F

coefficient,

(4-10)

the
area

dominantly
influenced
by the mass wlocity
or
the mass flow rate per unit area of the gas,
subject
to the exponent 0.8. In comparison,
all
other factors are relatively
minor. A rough
approximation
of hg can thus be expressed
by
the following equation:
hg=(p'V)

Twg = Hot-gas-sidelocal chamber-wall temperature,deg R


The determination
of the gas-side
heat transfer coefficient
hg is a rather complex problem.
The convection
phenomenon
as it occurs in
rocket thrust chambers
eludes complete understanding.
Attempts to compare analytical
results
with experimental
heat-transfer
data obtained on
rocket thrust chambers have often shown disagreement.
The differences
are largely attributed
to the initial assumptions
for analytical
calculations.
For example, there is good evidence
that
oxidizing and reducing atmospheres
covering a
wide range of temperature
exist locally in the
combustion
product gases within the thrust chamber, because of the imperfect
mixing of the propellants
at the injector face.
This results
in
deviations
from calculations
based on the assumption of homogeneous
product gases.
However, it has been established
by experiment _hat the beat-transfer
coefficien_
is pre-

(4-11)

where
p' = Free stream value of local gas density,
lb/cu in
= Free stream value of local gas velocity,
in/set
Thus, under normal circumstances,
the heattransfer coefficient
varies with the chamber pressure to the 0.8 power and throughout
a given
chamber inversely
with the local chamber diameter to an exponent of 1.8.
Based on experience
with turbulent
boundary
layers,
some relatively
simple correlations
for
the calculation
of the gas-side
heat-transfer
coefficient
have been developed.
A much-used
form is that credited
to Colburn

Btu/

Taw = Adiabatic
wall temperature of the gas,
deg R= (Tc)ns x turbulent
boundary layer
recovery
factor (ranging from 0.90 to
o.9s)

Nu = C Re 8 Pr _

(4-12)

where
Nu = Nusselt number = hg D/k
C =Dimensionless constant
Re = Reynolds number = p'VD/_
= Free stream velocity,in/set
Pr = Prandtlnumber = _Cp/k
D =Hydraulic diameter,in
k =Gas thermalconductivity,Btu/sec-in2deg F/in
_t =Viscosity, Ib/in sec
Cp=Specific heat at constantpressure,Btu/Ibdeg F
or as Bartz

has shown

'++L+.
+
,.'+c+++"
It+
] i+)o.
(-+)'o
+,++
where
R = l_dius
of curvature
throat, in

of nozzle

o = Correction
factor for property
across the boundary layer

contour
variations

at

101

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

A = Area under consideration


along chamber axis
The value of a can be evaluated
in terms of nozzle stagnation
temperature,
local gas-side
chamber wall temperature,
and local Mach number.
1

values of a for various Twg/(Tc)n


s and y, as
computed by Bartz, are shown in figure 4-24.
If Pr and # data are not available
for particular combustion
gas mixtures,
the following equations can be used for approximate
results:

(4-15)

Pr=9__5
/_=(46.6
where T= temperature
Equations
(4-13),

10-_) _ ST '6

(4-16)

of gas mixture, R
(4-14), (4-15), and (4-16)

can be used to calculate


the
ues along the thrust chamber
the calculated
values can be
lower than the actual ones if
ditions
exist:

approximate
hg valwalls.
However,
expected
to be
the following con-

0.6

"'l
O -I'z

I
J

o.6[ 1
4

TI/

JI

_1

Figure 4-24.-Values
property variation

The calculated
values may be higher than the
actual ones, because of the following:
(1) The combustion
reactions
may not be
completed
in the chamber.
(2) The combustion
gases may deposit solids
on the chamber walls, which act as
insulators.
In certain propellant
combinations,
the combustion products contain small amounts of solid
particles.
These solids tend to deposit on the
chamber wails, and form a rather effective
insulating layer.
A quantitative
evaluation
of _he
insulation
effectiveness
of this layer, necessary
for correct heat transfer
calculations,
has been
accomplished
only experimentally.
In the case of the LO2/RP-1
combination,
carbon solids are deposited
on the chamber
walls.
After a firing, the carbon gives the interior of the thrust chamber the appearance
of
being freshly painted black.
The outer surface
of the carbon appears
sooty and can easily be
removed by light rubbing.
Underneath
the exterior soot layer is a harder, graphitelike
layer
which can also be removed, but is more tenacious.
This carbon deposit significantly
increases
the gas-side
thermal resistance.
The
temperature
of the carbon deposit at the hot
gas-side
interface
approaches
the gas temperature as the carbon thickness
increases.
The values of the thermal resistance
of the
carbon deposit based on actual experimental
testing results of a thrust chamber burning
LO2/RP-1
are shown in figure 4-25.
For the heat transfer calculation
of the gasside heat transfer with solid deposit on chamber
walls, the following equations
can be used
q = hgc (Taw - Twg)

CONTRACTION

(1) A substantial
fraction
of the combustion
gases are strong radiators.
(2) There is substantial
dissociation,
with
subsequent
recombination
near the wall.
(3) There are strong high-frequency
flow
instabilities.

5 6

I
78510

20

30

40

where hgc = overall gas-side


Btu/in2-sec-deg
F

I[XP&NSION

of correction
factor a for
across boundary layer.

thermal

1
hgc-

conductance,

(4-18)

i
hg +

(4-17)

Rd

102

DESIGN

!,!

2400

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

,;

ROCKET

ENGINES

= 6460 (0.975) 2 : 6140 R


(See eq. 1-32a and 1-41).
From sample calculation

(4-1):

22(311 _

Design
I_ u? ,8o0

From sample

c* = 5660 ft/sec

calculation

(4-2):

Dc=24.9
Mean radius
fzoo

of the throat

2
CONTRI.CllON _

4
t _

_
AREA

I ,

6
8
EXPANSION

12

- 11.71 in

e 44)

yR
1.222 x
Cp - (),_ I),I - (i. 222 - I) 778 = 0.485 Btu/lb-deg

From equation
where Rd thermal resistance
caused
by the solid
deposit,
in2-sec-deg
F/Btu
When there is no solid deposit,
Rd =0 and
hgc = hg, and equation
(4-10) is used for heat
transfer calculations.

Calculation

contour
18.68+4.75
2

_4

RATIO

Figure 4-25.-Thermal
resistance
el carbon deposit on chamber
walls
LO2/RP-1,
mixture
ratio = 2.35, (Pc)n s = 1000 psia.

Sample

in

(4-15):

4 1.222
Pr : (9 1.222) - 5 =0.816

From equation

(4-16):

: (46.6 10 -1) (22.5) 05 x (6140) 0.6

(4-3)

Determine
the approximate
design gas-side
overall thermal conductance
hgc in the combustion chamber, at the throat, and at the exit nozzle point of e=5, for the regeneratively
cooled
thrust chambers on the A-1 and A-2 stage
engines.

= 46.6 10-1 4.76 188


- 4.18 x 10 -6 lb/in-sec
From equation

h -V0"026

g-L

(4-13):

x((4"1810-_)2x0'485)
0.8160.6

Solution

0.9

(_.) A-I Stage Engine


First, let us consider equation
(4-13).
The
combustion
reactions
are assumed
to be homogeneous and complete.
From figure 4-3 the following values are derived for the chamber product
gases,
for LO2/RP-1
mixture ratio of 2.35:
(Tc)ns

at (Pc)ns = 1000 psia

and a

lb/mol,

y= 1.222

(Tc)ns

=Theoretical

(Tz)ns

: 0.01366

(c* correction

factor) 2

At\ 0.9
0.046 4.02 1.078 k-_}
o

"At_O.9

= 0.0027 x ("_')

= 6000 F or 6460 R,
=22.5

The design

\-g-6-65

Since the carbon deposit temperature


approaches
the gas temperature,
a (Twg/(Tc)ns)
value of 0.8 is used to determine
the a values
from figure 4-24 (),_1.2).
At the combustion
chamber:

(7

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER

COMBUSTION DEVICES

b(b_)A-2
(__)

9:(1_16)
" 1" 0.9 :0,655,

a=l,05

Again,

Stage
the

Engine

combustion

to be homegeneous
hg : 0.0027

4-4,

1.05
= 0.00185

x 0.655

Btu/in2-sec-deg

the

= 800
At the

following

chamber

product

psia

and

103

reactions

and

complete.

values

are

gases,

assumed
figure

derived

for

for LO;/LH2

a mixture

ratio

the

at (Pc)as

of 5.22:

throat:
(Tc)ns

= 5580 F or 6040

R,
=12

-_)'9=l,a=

hg = 0.0027

x 1 x 1 : 0.0027

Btu/in

2-sec-deg

design

exit

nozzle

point

(Tc)ns

(Tc)ns

x (c*

From

sample

calculation

0.8
: 0.000507

The experimental
used to determine
Rd,

for the

resistances

Btu/in2-sec-deg

data of figure
4-25
the values
of thermal
carbon

factor)

(0.975)

2 = 5740 R

(4-1):

a=0.8
Design

0.235

correction
= 6040

of

e=5,(_-)'9=(1)9:O.235,

hg = 0.0027

y= 1.213

F
Theoretical

At the

lb/mol,

1
The

ance

are
From

deposit.

The

From

figure

c* = 74S0

ft/sec

4-21:

Dt = 11.2 in

can be
resistMean

thermal

radius of the throat contour =

are
8.4+2.14
- 5.27 in

in2-sec-deg
1670

in:-sec-deg

Btu

1125

Btu

'
in2-sec-deg

and

for points
and

the

at the
exit

Substitute
combustion

combustion

nozzle
into

area
the

chamber,
ratio

equation

Cp = (y_

Btu

the

yR

From

throat,

1.213

equation

(4-18);

Btu/in2-sec-deg

1.21a

equation

- 5 = 0.820

(4-16):

1670

= (46.6

x 10-lo)

(12) o.s (5740)o6

x 10- ,o 3.47

x 180

throat
=2.92x

hg c -

At the

1
--+
0.0027
exit

= 0.00067

Btu/in2-sec-deg

nozzle

1
-0.000507

From

lb/in-sec

equation

(4-13):

of e= 5.

= 0.000276
e1645

10 -6

1125

hg=L
[ 0.026
hg c-

Btu/lb-deg

(4-15):
4x

at the

From
= 0.00045

0.943

of e = 5.

= 46.6
at the

- 1) 778-

Pr = (9 x 1.213)

1
--+
0.00185

1544
i----_

1)g = (1.213

chamber

1
hgc -

1645

Btu/in2-sec-deg

x ((2.92x,

_10-6)20.943)

F
x\

7480

x\5--._

j\-_--]

104

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

(A_

ROCKET ENGINES

t.,4_CHAMBER

09

:0.01605
0.0828
2.691.078\--X-J

GAS SIDE
BOUNDARY

I
INNER WALL
['_qI.--COOLANT
SIDE
BOUNDARY
LAYER

LAYER

I A_ x9
_At
= 0.00385

Since
wails,

x _---_-)

there

is

no solid

an average

and

(1500/5740)

or 0.26

values

figure

At the

--

0.9

on the

wall

temperature

of

a (Twg/(Tc)ns)

is used

the

Tw_

chamber:

G.__16

0.9

= 0.655,

RADIAL

a= 1.38

At the

x 0.655 x 1.38
= 0.00348
Btu/in2-sec-deg

Figure

--Twc

DISTANCE

CENTER
hgc = hg : 0.00385

COOLANT

1 It

valueof

to determine

To.
COM__

chamber

4-24.

combustion

(__)

deposit

gas-side

1500 R is assumed,
from

OF

4-26.-Heat

FROM

CHAMBER

trans[er

erative

Tco

schematic

for regen-

cooling.

throat:
=hc(Twc-Teo)

_)9

fig c :hg=0.00385

Btu/in2-sec-deg

(4-21)

H-

1 x 1.35
= 0.00520

-Tco)

= H (Taw

= 1, o=1.35

(4-20)

(4-22)

F
where

At the

exit

nozzle

point

of e = 5:

(-_)9=(1)9=0.235,

= Heat

hgc

= Overall

Btu/in2-sec

gas-side

thermal

Btu/in2-sec-deg

a=1.16
hc

hgc = hg = 0.00385

flux,

0.235 1.16
=0.00105
Btu/in2-sec-deg

out deposits,
=Coolant
side

= Thermal

Cooling

conductivity

= Chamber

wall

Taw =Adiabatic
The

heat

chamber
tween

transfer

can
two

partition.
matically.

be described
fluids,

Figure

4-26

The
transfer

through

the

by the

as

moving

of heat

chamber

in a regeneratively

layers,

walls,
following

shows

general
from

this

heat

which

process

include

equations:

can

be-

sche-

correlation

combustion

coolant

flow

a multilayer

steady-state
the

to the

the

through

cooled

deg

metal

be expressed

with-

coefficient,

of chamber

wall,

F/in
thickness,

in

temperature

of the

gas,

Twg= Gas-side
Two = Coolant

wall temperature,
deg R
side
wall temperature,
deg

Teo
H

bulk temperature,
deg
heat-transfer
coefficient,

= Coolant
= Overall

gases
the

wall

4-18;

Btu/in2-sec-deg
Regenerative

eq.

hg c = hg)
heat-transfer

Btu/in2-sec-deg
F

conductance,

F (see

sec-deg
The

bulk
from

cooling

passages,

absorbed,

the

and

balance

of these

chamber

walls

Btu/in:-

temperature

creases

Too

of the

point

of entry

as

a function

of the

coolant

parameters,
at temperatures

coolant

until

of the

flow

the

heat

rate.

Proper

to maintain
below

in-

it leaves

those

the
at

DESIGN

OF THRUST

CHAMBERS

which failure might occur because


of melting or
stress,
is one of the major criteria for the design
of regeneratively
cooled thrust chambers.
For
metals commonly used in thrust-chamber
walls,
such as stainless
steel, nickel, and Inconel,
the
limiting hot-gas-side
wall temperature
is around
1500-1800 F. The resultant
differences
between combustion
gas temperature
and wall temperature range from 2500 to 6000 F.
Assume a station in the thrust chamber with
gas temperature
Taw and coolant bulk temperature Tco.
Referring
to equation
4-21, it is seen
that the heat flux q, which must be the same
through all layers, is a function of the temperatures, and of overall heat transfer coefficient
H.
The value of H is composed of the individual
coefficients
for the boundary layers and the
chamber metal wall (eq. 4-22). The smaller H,
the smaller is q. However, it is one of the major
design goals
heat transfer

to keep coefficient
hgc low, but
coefficient
hc and conductivity
t/k

high, in relation to hgc. Since the temperature


differentials
are inversely
proportional
to the
heat-transfer
coefficients
of the heat flow paths,
the temperature
drop will then be steepest
between hot gas and inner chamber wall.
The
effect is analogous
to voltage drops along resistors in electrical
circuits.
It is noted that the heat absorbed
by the propellant used for regenerative
cooling raises
temperature
of the propellant,
and thus the energy
level before it is injected
into the combustion
chamber.
However, this effect on overall engine
performance
is slight, the gain usually being
less than 1 percent.
On the other hand, regenerative cooling with attendant
pressure
losses
requiring additional
turbopump power or higher
gas pressurization
levels imposes a performance
penalty.

AND

OTHER

COMBUSTION

105

DEVICES

The characteristics

of coolant

side

heat

transfer
depend largely on the coolant pressure
and coolant side wall temperature.
In figure
4-27, the heat flux is plotted versus wall temperature for a constant
coolant pressure,
bulk temperature,
and flow velocity.
Curve A indicates
the behavior of heat transfer
at coolant presst, res below critical.
Line segment At-A2 represents the heat transfer
without boiling when the
wall temperature
is below the saturation
temperature of the coolant corresponding
to the fluid
pressure.
As the wall temperature
at A: exceeds
the saturation
temperature
by a certain margin
(50 to 100 F), bubbles will form within the
coolant layer close to the wall.
The bubbles
grow continuously
out into the colder liquid
stream until condensation
at the vapor to liquid
surface begins to exceed the rate of vaporization
at the base of the vapor bubble, whereupon
the
bubbles start to collapse.
This process,
which
occurs at high frequencies,
is described
as
"nucleate
boiling."
It substantially
increases
the heat-transfer
coefficient,
resulting
in little
increase
in wall temperature
for a wide range of
heat fluxes.
The heat transfer
with nucleate
boiling is represented
by line A2-A 3. At A 3,
further increase
in the heat flux abruptly leads
to such'a dense bubble population
that the bubbles combine into a vapor film with an attendant
large decrease
in heat-transfer
coefficient.
The
region of heat transfer with film boiling is represented by line A3-A 4. The resulting
increase
in

_6

.A 3

-w,.

....

.........

o
P"_

C U RVE

(Pco =I/2

Pc_,r,cAO

z4

Coolant Side Heat Transfer


The coolant side heat-transfer
coefficient
hc
is influenced
by many factors.
At the high heat
fluxes and temperatures
encountered
in thrust
chamber operation,
the propellants
used for cooling may become corrosive,
may decompose
or
deposit impurities
upon the heated surface,
thereby reducing
cooling effectiveness.
It is
impossible
to calculate
the hc values under
these conditions
without experimental
data.

Mr
At _

_"

O B_2

I I

,"--CURVE
( P"OI

I0

> I PCmTICALI

12

14

I)

16

is

20

COOLANT SIDE WALL TEMP.


TWC (F) X I0 -z
Figure 4-27.-Heat
flux versus
coolant side wall
temperature
of typical
propellant
in various
heat trans/er
regions.

106

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

wall temperature
is so high that failure of the
wall material often occurs.
The heat flux at A_
is defined as the upper limit of nucleate
boiling
of the coolant qul, which therefore
should be
used as the design limit for a regenerative
cooling system.
Curve B indicates
the heat transfer behavior
of a coolant above critical
pressure.
Since no
boiling can occur, the wall temperature
continually increases
with increasing
heat flux. Line
B1-B2 represents
the heat-transfer
region, when
the wall temperature
is below the coolant critical
temperature.
The heat-transfer
coefficient
remains essentially
constant.
As the wall temperature reaches the critical
temperature
B2 and
higher, a gradual transition
to a stable supercritical vapor-film boundary layer begins, which
results
in somewhat lower heat-transfer
coefficients.
Line B2-B 3 represents
the heat transfer
in this region.
Wall failure temperatures
are
usually reached at lower temperatures
when the
coolant is above the critical presstire
than when
it is below it. Where possible,
a coolant operating pressure
between 0.3 to 0.7 of critical
pressure
should be used to take advantage
of the
high heat-transfer
coefficients
available
with
nucleate
boiling.
However, in most systems,
particularly
those which are fed from a turbopump, the cooling jacket pressure,
which is
equal to or larger than the sum of chamber pressure and injection
pressure,
is supercritical.
For the nonboiling
subcritical
temperature
regions of both, subcritical
and supercritical
coolant pressures
(AI-A2 and B_-B 2 in fig. 4-27), the
relationship
between wall temperature
and heat
flux, which depends on the heat transfer coefficient hc, can be predicted
with sufficient
accuracy for design purposes
with the help of the
Sieder-Tate
equation (eq. 4-23) for turbulent
heat
transfer to liquids flowing in channels:

gw =coolant viscosity
at coolant sidewall
temperature
d
= coolant passage
hydraulic diameter,
in
k
= coolant thermal conductivity,
Btu/sec-in
deg F/in
p
=coolant
density, ib/in 3
Vco = coolant velocity,
in/sec
Cp = coolant specific
heat at constant
pressure, Btu/ib-deg
F
The heat flux at the upper limit of nucleate
boiling qul can be estimated
from
qul
qnonboiling

Nu=C 1 Re SPr4

(4-23)

(ju+)

where
C I =a constant
(different
values
coolants)
Nu =Nusselt
number= hcd/k

for various

Re = Reynolds number = pVcod/_


Pr = Prandtl number = i_Cp/k
/_ =coolant
viscosity
at bulk temperature

C 2 x 10*
(4-24)

PcoG

where
C2

= constant,
coolant

qnonboiling

-- heat

Pco
G

= coolant pressure,
psia
= coolant maximum flow rate
unit area, lb/in2-sec

its value
used

flux without
Btu/in2-sec

depending
nucleate

on

boiling,

per

When the heat is transferred


through a vaporfilm boundary layer (coolant at supercritical
pressure
and temperature,
region B2-B 3 in fig.
4-27), the coolant-side
heat-transfer
coefficient
hc can be estimated
from

hc: 0.029 Cpp 2 (.GO*,_.2._, _ oss


pr2/3
\--d'_] \Twc!

(4-25)

where
Cp

Pr
G

= coolant specific
heat at constant
pressure, Btu/Ib-deg
F
coolant viscosity,
Ib/in-sec
= Prandtl number
= coolant weight flow rate per unit area,
Ib/in2-sec

coolant passage
hydraulic diameter,
in
= coolant bulk temperature,
deg R
Twc--coolant side wall temperature,
deg R
The bulk temperature
of most coolants
should
be kept below the critical temperature,
since the
vapor-film heat-transfer
coefficient
would be too
d

014

2-

Tco

low to cool the wall effectively.


The cooling
capacity
of the liquid-state
regenerative
coolant
system can be estimated
by
Qc

= #cCp

(Tcc - Tci)

(4-26)

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

k._.._,

_f.._

transfer calculation.
There are several
basic
design approaches
for regenerative-cooled
thrust
chambers.
Axial-flow
cooling jackets,
made up
of tubes, are used in the design of large thrust
chambers
(3000 pounds of thrust and up); coaxial
shells separated
by helical ribs or wires are
typical of the smaller thrust chamber designs.
Figure 4-1 shows a large regenerative
cooled
tubular wall thrust chamber.
Figure 4-28 represents a typical coaxial shell design for a smaller
thrust chamber.

In this design,
the coolant passage
is defined
as the rectangular
area between inner and outer
shell and two adjacent
ribs, which are wrapped
helically
around the inner shell or liner.

/
Figure

4-28.-Coaxial

shell

way.
Note overheated
on chamber wall.

thrust
and

Tubular

chamber

cuta-

burnt-through

spot

where
Qc =coolant
We = coolant

107

capacity,
Btu/sec
mass flow rate, lb/sec

Cp

=coolant specific
heat at constant
pressure, Btu/lb-deg
F
Tcc =coolant critical temperature,
deg R
Tci = coolant inlet temperature,
deg R
The allowed value of the total chamber wall gas
heat-transfer
rate Q should be kept below Qc by
a safe margin (Q<Qc).
However, there is no such limitation
for hydrogen when used as a coolant.
Hydrogen has
excellent
heat-transfer
characteristics
with a
reasonably
high heat-transfer
coefficient
even in
the supercritical
pressure
and temperature
region.
Usually liquid hydrogen enters the chamber coolant passage
under supercritical
pressure
and
reaches
supercritical
temperature
a short distance from the inlet.
The coolant passage
areas at various points
along the chamber walls are designed
to maintain
the proper coolant velocity
dictated by the heattransfer coefficients
determined
by the heat-

Wall Thrust

Chamber

Design

In the design of tubular wall thrust chambers,


the number of coolant tubes required
is a function of the chamber geometry, the coolant weight
flow rate per unit tube area, the maximum allowable tube wall stress,
and fabrication
considerations.
The critical
cooling region is near the
throat where the heat flux is highest.
It is this
region, then, which determines
the number of
tubes required for a given coolant flow rate.
For
easier fabrication
and lower stress,
tube cross
sections
of circular
shape are preferred.
However, other shapes are often used to meet certain
flow-area
requirements.
The stress
analysis
of
the tubes is based upon three primary considerations:
the hoop stress caused by coolant pressure, the thermal stress caused by temperature
gradient across
the tube section and the wall,
and the bending stress caused by distortion
induced by the pressure
differential
between adjacent tubes (if any) or by other effects
such as
discontinuities.
The tube design stress
is based
on the combined stress
from the above three considerations.
It has been found that the maximum
combined
stress will occur at the throat region.
As shown in figure 4-29, the maximum combined tangential
stresses
of the circular-tube
will be at section
A-A and can be expressed
by

St-

(Pco - Pg) r
Eaqt
6 MA
t
+ 2 (1 - v) k + t---7--

(4-27)

where
St

=combined

tangential

tensile

stress,

lb/in-'

DESIGN OF LIQUID

108

=heat

flux,

= tube

radius,

=tube

wall

Pco = coolant
=combustion

=modulus

in
thickness,

gas

lb/in

=thermal

=thermal

in

in/in-deg

= Poisson's

ratio

tube

design)

I) has

that

(zone

be restrained

II),

considerably

the

the

A, M:4, should

pressure

adjacent

take

differential

into

(if any)

tubes.

buckling

the

JACKET

.__

ZONEII

is

for circular
of the tube

temperature
and

expansion

by zone

II.

induced
stress

EQUIV. CHAMBER
INTERNAL RAD.

of

II, thermal

certain

longitudinal

thermal

of

Because

of zone
under

than

chamber

thermal
mass

I, in the

longitudinal

F-CHAMBER

differen-

tubes
portion

greater

in zone

to calculate

material

of pressure

portion

shell

The

by discontinuity,

tube

side

I will

ditions,

wall

mean

zone

inelastic

at section

wall

material,

caused

higher

outer
the

wall

of tube

adjacent

a much
back

moment

between

mate-

of tube

of tube

combustion-gas-side

of the

applied

(no effect

between

(zone

be also

F/in

moment

tial
the

wall

coefficient

Btu/in2-sec-deg

Since

can

consideration

lb/in2

of tube

conductivity

in-lb/in

ing

pressure,

expansion

MA =bending

(4-29)

material,

ROCKET ENGINES

stresses
for this design.
Here again
the maximum combined
stress
is at section
A. The bend-

lb/in

of elasticity

rial,
a

and

Btu/inLsec

pressure,

pg

PROPELLANT

con-

direction.

can

be estimated

THRUST

CHAMBER

by
Figure
81 = Ea AT

(4-28)

tube wall

4-29.-Circular
cooled

thrust

of regeneratively

chamber.

where
S_

=longitudinal

h T: mean

temperature

I and
S 1 should

zone

be

0.9 Sc,
The

critical

buckling

on

thermal

lb/in

difference

II,

kept

stress,

deg

CHAMBER

between

JACKET

zone

at a level

not

higher

than

below.

stress
zone

for longitudinal
I can

be

inelastic

estimated

by

4 ErEct

(4-29)

)r

Z_P=

Pco1 . pco2

/
EQUIVALENT CHAMBER
INTERNAL RADIUS

where
Sc = critical

stress

buckling
Et = tangential

Ec = tangential
pression

in figure

I, lb/in

modulus

modulus

of elasticity

lb/in
cross

at wall

stress-strain

4-30.

inelastic
2

of elasticity

lb/in

temperature,
An elongated

for longitudinal

in zone

temperature,

shown

ZONE II

curve,

from

com-

at wall

THRUST CHAMBER

section
Equations

tube

design

(4-27),

is
(4-28),

Figure

4-30,-Elongated
lively

cooled

tube
thrust

wall
chamber.

of

regenera-

,4

109

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

lap

M'A: MA+ KA-_-

(4-30)
v

=thermal conductivity
of inner shell material, Btu/in2-sec-deg
F/in
=Poisson's
ratio of inner shell material

where
M_ = combined
in-lb/in

bending

moment at section

MA = bending moment due


KA = dimensionless
design
test results
(range
1 =length of flat portion
Ap = pressure differential
tubes, lb/in 2

A,

to discontinuity
constant
based on
0.3-0.5)
on tube wall, in
between adjacent

Substituting
equation (4-30) into equation (4-27),
the maximum stress of the elongated
tube can be
calculated.
The working loads induced in a regenerative
tubular wall chamber by the chamber pressure are
designed
to be absorbed
by a chamber jacket or
tension bands wrapped around the tube bundle.

Coaxial

Shell Thrust

Pressure

shell and can be calculated


equation.

Sc _ (Pco-Pg)
t

from the following

R _

Eaqt
2(1 -v)k

Ap:[

L pVco2
_
2g

(4-32)

where
Ap

:coolant
pressure
drop through the portion
of cooling passage
under consideration,
lb/in 2

L
d

=length of that portion, in


= equivalent
average diameter
tion, in

of that por-

9
= average density of the coolant,
lb/in3
Vco = average coolant flow velocity,
in/sec
g
=mass conversion
factor, equal to gravitational constant,
32.2 12 in/sec 2
I
= friction loss coefficient,
which is a function of the Reynolds
number, and of
cooling passage
conditions
such as
surface smoothness,
geometric
shape,
etc.
This can be determined
only experimentally
(also see fig. 7-20 and
table 7-3)

(4-31)

where
Sc

=combined
maximum compressive
stress,
lb/in 2
q
=heat flux, Btu/inLsec
R
=radius of the inner shell, in
t
=thickness
of the inner shell, in
Pco =coolant pressure,
lb/in 2
pg =combustion
gas pressure,
lb/in 2
E =modulus of elasticity
of inner shell material, lb/in 2
=thermal expansion
coefficient
shell material,
in/in-cleg
F

passage
change of
or contracThe inner

surface of cooling passages


should be smooth
and clean.
The pressure
drop in a cooling passage can be treated as that in a hydraulic
conduit and be calculated
accordingly.

Sample

Passages

It is desirable
to design a cooling
with minimum pressure
drop. Abrupt
flow direction
and sudden expansion
tion of flow areas should be avoided.

Chamber Design

In a coaxial-shell-type
thrust chamber as
shown in figure 4-28, the outer shell is subjected only to the hoop stress
induced by the
coolant pressure
The inner shell, however, is
subjected
to the combination
of compressive
stress caused by the pressure
differential
between the coolant and combustion
gases,
and of
the thermal stress
caused by the temperature
gradient across the wall.
The maximum stress
occurs at the inner-wall
surface of the inner

Drop in Cooling

of inner

Calculation

(4-4)

Determine
the cooling passage
design at the throat for the thrust
the A-1 and A-2 stage engines.

and the tube


chambers
of

Solution
(a_) A-1 Stage Engine
The fuel, RP-1, is used as the coolant.
Since
the cooling requirement
is most stringent
at the
throat, the tube design for this station will serve
as the starting
point for the entire chamber.
For
high strength,
Inconel X is chosen as the tube

110

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

material.
Based on experimental
test results
which showed good solid carbon deposits,
design
values not exceeding
1000 F or 1460 R may be
permitted for gas-side
tube-wall
temperature.
Specifically
for the throat region, a Twg value of
1188 R is taken.
Using the results
of sample
calculation
4-3, the value for the adiabatic
wall
temperature
Taw can be calculated
by multiplying (Tc)ns by the estimated
stagnation
recovery
factor of 0.923, r- Taw -- 6140 x 0.923= 5667 R.
From the same caiculation,
the overall gas-side
thermal conductance
at the throat region is
hgc =0.00067 Btu/in2-sec-deg
F. Substitute
into
equation (4-10), to obtain the heat flux at the
throat:

3.00
1000 - 600

h c

Twc - Tco

= 0.0075

Btu/in2-sec-deg

The relationship
between required hc and correct
tube diameter is established
by equation
(4-23),
and experimental
data for RP-1 (C 1 =0.0214):

Nu = 0.0214 Re SPr4 (#)0.,4


or, substituting

corresponding

terms:

----_ = 0.0214
q = (5667 - 1188) x 0.00067

=3.00

(#/14

The following

A circular tube configuration


with an internal
diameter
d and a wall thickness
t of 0.020 inch
is used.
The assumption
for thickness
is to be
verified by heat transfer and stress
calculations.
From equation (4-19), the coolant side wall temperature then is:
3.00
x 002 -'rl000o
3.19 x 10-4

The heat-transfer
coefficient
required to permit
the calculated
heat flux for the temperature
differential
assumed can now be calculated
from
(4-20):

Number of tubes

additional

relationships

exist:

N = rr[Dt + 0.8 (d + 0.04)]


(d+ 0.04)
_ (0.8 d + 24.93)
(d+ 0.04)

(b)

From sample calculation


(4-2), Dr= 24.9
inches.
The factor 0.8 considers
the fact that
the tube centers are located on a circle, rather
than a straight line.
For our double-pass
design,
the coolant
velocity then is

A double pass design is used; i.e., the coolant


passes
down through alternating
tubes and up
through adjacent
tubes.
For an "up" tube, assume a coolant bulk temperature
Tco = 600 R at the throat (the more
severe case, since the coolant has passed the
throat region before, on the way down).
This
temperature
is well below the critical
one and
can be expected
to remain so for the remainder
of the passage.
Total temperature
increase
for a
typical thrust chamber design is of the order of
100 P between cooling jacket inlet and outlet.

equation

(a)

Btu/in2-sec

From supplier's
specifications,
the following
average data are obtained
for Inconel X at 1000 1200 R: Coefficient
for thermal expansion,
a = S x 10 -6 in/in-deg
F; modulus of elasticity,
E = 28 x 106 psi; thermal conductivity,
k = 3.19
10 -4 Btu/in2-deg
F/in; Poisson's
ratio,
v=0.35.

qt
Twc=Twg--_=l188

wf
P

8278

V o:N 5d 5=
2

2106

(c)

From table3-2:
w/= 8271b/sec;
value of fluid density.
RP-1 at 600R has the following
#

=4.16

10 -s lb/in-sec

=1.78

10 -6

Btu/in2-sec-deg

Cp = 0.5 Btu/lb-deg

p=local
properties:

F/in

For RP-1 at 1000 R, #w = 0.416 10 -s lb/in-sec.


Now substitute
known values and equation
(c)
into equation
(a)

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

as an interpolation
between fuel pump outlet
pressure
and injector manifold pressure.
Combustion
gas pressure
at the throat

., 2106 \0.8

0.0075 d _ 0.0_.14 |_.___


n_.___._
s]
1.78 10 -6
\4.16 I0-_/

/0
\-

o.4

\0.416i0-V

11 \o.s
4220 d = 115 000 | ..'-F--.
]
\_al
N : 62.4d-22s
Substitute

equation

(d)
(d) into equation

Substitute

(b)

(b)

in

lb/in 3

equation

281068x

10-63.00.02

+6 MA
t2

(c)

94 (0.855) 2 0.0292
= 1051 in/sec
Pco = 1500 psia

Based on suppliers'
recommendation,
Fry
:82000
was used for Inconel X at 1000 R.

or 87.6

M,4 =

82 000- 53 700
15 000
= 1.88 in-lb/in

From experience
it can be assumed
that the
bending moment due to discontinuity
in this case
will be less than 1.88 in/lb/in.
Thus the assumption of 0.020 in thickness
for the tube wall
is sufficient.
Summarizing
the tube configuration
at the throat:
d=0.855

in, t=0.020

in, N=94

A-2 Stage Engine


The fuel, hydrogen,
is used as the coolant.
Again, Inconel X is chosen as the tube material.

At the throat

at the inner tube

(1500 - 562) 0.427


0. 020

Maximum allowable

2106
0

use

= 52 500 + 15 000 MA

50.45
p=_
= 0.0292

Vc

psia

= 20 000 + 32 500 + 15 000 MA

For the determination


of a new tube design,
repeated calculations,
with varied assumptions,
will be required.
An experienced
designer
will
require fewer approaches,
particularly
if test
results of prior, comparable
designs
are available.
However, even for complicated
conditions,
great amounts of data can be generated
in a relatively short time if an electronic
computer is
available.
From table 3-2:

into equation

using

(4-2);

2 x (1- 0.35) 3.19 10-4

Since for two-pass


design a whole, even tube
number is needed, the design value of N = 94 is
used.
Substituting
this into equation
(b)

Substitute

10000.562=562

(y= 1.222 from sample calculation


table 1-2).
Thus maximum tensile
stress

N= 94.5

d = 0.855

Pg= pt=(Pc)ns(._?_y)y--,
=.-L
\y_ll

St-:

in

(d) into equation

..L.Y

wall face can be determined


(4-27):

62.4 d -22s - n(0.8 d + 24.93)


(d + 0.04)
d= 0.85

111

ft/sec

is established,

To avoid the "hot shortness"


or low-ductility
properties
of Inconel X in the range 1200 1400 F, the mean temperature
of the tube wall
must be kept under 1000 F (or 1460 R). The
value for adiabatic
wall temperature
Taw of the
gas can be calculated
using an assumed
stagnation recovery factor of 0.92.

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

112

Taw = (Tc)ns

x 0.92 = 5740 x 0.92 = 5270 R

From sample calculation


(4-3) the overall
gas-side
conductance
at the throat region hgc
= 0.00520 Btu/in2-sec-deg
F. Substitute
into
equation
(4-19), to obtain the heat flux at the
throat:
q = (5270-1600)

x 0.00520

= 3670 x 0.00520
= 19.10 Btu/in2-sec

(b)

A l_A-pass design is used (i.e., the coolant


enters the fuel manifold at the e = 8 nozzle plane,
flows to e = 30 and back, then passes
through the
throat and combustion
chamber zone before it
the injector).

From table

3-3:

of 1600 R will be used for the gas_/[= 54.5 lb/sec

side wall temperature


Twg at the throat region.
From supplier's
specifications
the following data
is obtained
for tnconel X at 1600 R or 1140 F:
a=8.2x10

(d+0.016)
_ _r(0.S d+ 11.213)
(d + 0.016)

enters
A value

[Dr + 0.8 (d 0.016)]

Number of tubes N =

-6 in/in-deg
F; E=24x106
psi;
k=3.86 x 10 -4 Btu/in:-sec-deg

Coolant

weight

G-

F/in

flow rate

per unit area

_'[

_54.54_69.3

N (--_-)

_Nd2

(c)
Nd2

v=0.35.
For hydrogen
Use a circular tube configuration
with an internal diameter
d and a wall thickness
t of 0.008
inch.
From equation
temperature

Twc : 1600

(4-19)

the coolant

side

Pr:0.82;

at 135 l_:

Cp=3.5

Btu/lb-deg
F;
: 0.367 x 10-6 lb/in-sec

wall
Substitute
these
equation (a):

values

and equation

19.I0 x 0.008
: 1600 - 396 : 1204 R
3.86 x 10-4

A mean value

will be used

for the wall tem-

0.0179-

0.029 x 3.5 x (0.367 x 10-6) _


(0.82) z_3

r(0 . o.1

perature

Twc-

/ (-135.V
55

1600 + 1204
2
- 1402 R < 1460 R

L do.

Assume a coolant bulk temperature,


Tco
= 135 R at the throat;
then, from equation
(4-20),

19.10
hc : 1204- 135- 0.0179

or
N:3.91d
Substitute

Btu/in:-sec-deg

equation

into equation

(4-25),

0.029 Cp# a (GO.S) [, '_Tc


o ss
0.0179-

pr2/a

(d'2)

_wJ

From figure 4-21, Dr= 11.2 in.


The following relationships
exist:

-2-25

(d) into equation

F
3.91 d -:as

Substitute

(e) into

- 7r(0.8 d+ 11.213)
(d+0.016)
d =0.185

in

(a)
Substitute

into equation

(b)

N- 7r(0.8 0.17 + 11.213)_


(0.17 + 0.016)

178

(b)

113

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AHD OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

Maximum
inner

wall

At the

tensile

stress

surface
throat,

is

using

now checked

equation

estimated

at the

Pro

= 1200

psia;

Pg = Pt = (Pc)n s (2/(y

+ 1))Y / (Y- 1) = 800 x 0.554

psia

sample

(=

St = (1200-

1.213

from

calculation

it can

to discontinuity

0.131

inch

tube

tube

configuration

(4-1))

2 (1 - 035)

x 3.86

x 0.008

As

10 -4

in-lb/in.

: 68 750 + 93 900 MA

(0"008)2

the

at the

inch,

t=0.008

design

aid,

atively

cooled

thrust

chamber.

shown

is very

similar

to the

how

the

tube

4-2.

Figure

shape

selection

of 0.008-

Maximum

allowable

psi

for Inconel

MA-

X at 1200 R

first

81 000- 68 750
93 900
=0.131

in-lb/in

4-31.-Typical

regeneratively

to length,
can

hydraulic

pressure

with

and

wax,

special

Figure

cut

operation

changes

then

best

figures

4-31

for a typical
The

then

chamber

presented

4-31

shows

clearly

the

longitudi-

along

to the

4-32.-Detail

of injector

The

in

process,
area

The

are

latter
by internal

tubes

(preshaped),

thrust-chamber

are

filled

in a
contour.

_KnoN_

cooled

tube

wall

thrust

....
Figure

swaged.

bent

and4-32
regener-

one

accomplished

in a die.

are

fixture,

be

the

N= 178.

nal axis.
In a typical
manufacturing
tubes
of uniform
circular
cross-section
Fry = 81000

the

be less

Summarizing

inch,

detail

4-1 and

that
will

throat:

construction

figures

recommendations,

Thus

be assumed

is valid.

a general

present
MA

+6

due

thickness

d=0.185

24 x 106 x 8.2 x 10 -6 x 19.10

on suppliers'

experience,
moment

than
: 443

443) x 0.0925
0.008
+

Based

From
bending

(4-27):

chamber.

......

manifolding
wall

and
thrust

return

manifold

chamber.

of typical

regeneratively

cooled

tube

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

114

The tube is then placed in a die of varying


cross-sectional
area.
Hydraulic
pressure
applied
to the inside of the tube forces it to aline with
the die and to assume final shape.
In preparation for assembly,
a trimming process
usually
follows.
i

In preparation
for assembly
into a chamber,
the tubes are arranged on a brazing fixture (core).
For proper brazing great care is required to assure even distribution
of the gaps between tubes.
Earlier chamber models were then hand brazed, a
process
requiring many weeks and considerable
skill.
More recently,
furnace brazing has been
successfully
applied, drastically
cutting chamberassembly
time.

A.

LONGITUDINAL

PASSAGE

DOUBLE-WALL

CHAMBER

B.

SPIRAL
PASSAGE
DOUBLE-WALLCHAMBER

Dump Cooling
The dump cooling technique
may be particularly effective
for applications
in hydrogenfueled, low-pressure
systems (Pc < 100 psia), or
for nozzle extensions
of high-pressure
hydrogen
systems.
A small amount of the total hydrogen
flow is diverted from the main fuel feed line, fed
through cooling passages
and ejected.
The heat
transfer
mechanism
is similar to that of regenerative cooling.
The coolant,
however, becomes
superheated
as it flows toward the nozzle exit,
where it is expanded overboard
at reasonably
high temperatures
and velocities,
thus contributing some thrust.
Application
of dump cooling is
often limited,
however, by various technical
difficulties,
such as discharge
nozzle design at
low coolant flow rates.
The type of coolant path for a dump-cooled
thrust chamber is selected
to assure
maximum
overall engine system performance.
Two possible paths are shown in figure 4-33:
(1) Axial flow: a one-pass
longitudinal
passage, using double-wall
(fig. 4-33A) or
tube-wall
designs
(fig. 4-33C).
Both are
open ended, with provision
for expansion
of the dumped superheated
hydrogen gas
at the nozzle exit.
(2) Circumferential
flow: a double-wall
design having a spiral flow path for the
coolant and provision
for expansion
of
the dumped superheated
hydrogen gas in
the axial direction
(fig. 4-33B).
A
spiral-wound
tube design may also prove
advantageous
(fig. 4-33D).

C.

LONGITUDINAL

TUBEWALL

D.

SPIRAL

CHAMBER

Figure

4-33.-Typical
dump-cooled
rication
methods.

TUBEWALL

CHAMBER

chamber iab-

The various constructions


differ considerably
in complexity
and fabrication
cost.
Selection
will depend on an optimum tradeoff between reliability, performance,
cost, and weight.
The
longitudinal
passage
designs are often employed
for larger coolant flow rates, as related to the
physical
size of the thrust chamber.
The spiral
passage
designs are used for smaller coolant
flow rates to alleviate
the difficulties
in maintaining proper flow velocities
and dimensional
clearances
in the coolant passage.
Because
the hydrogen coolant gas can be discharged at relatively
high temperatures
(1000 c R
and up), overall engine system performance
will
not be affected
appreciably
by the dump-coolant
flow.

115

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

An important

Film Cooling
Porous
vided

wall

materials,

in thrust

troduce

a coolant,

to as

film

coolant

film

of heat

and

thickness

of the

direction

of flow.

additional

coolant

of the

introduced

wall

surface
"B"
etc.

each

row

cover

the

area

Although
cooling

that

nearly

The
The

cover

the

Fluid

from
"B"

a flow

is just

not

been

and

rate

from

sufficient

to

in practice

always

exclusively

applied

rocket

in the

engines,

supplemented

cooling.

In most

instances,

layer

is

created

from the outermost


toward
the chamber

circle
wall.

by film
past

it is

regenerative

boundary

as

for the
signifi-

cooling

by some

TRANSFER

of film

gas

injection

of injector

wg

k|
h|

ITaw
Taw

--

_-_"

may

the

the
become

considera-

establish

of conventional

Film

the

regenerative

Cooling

It would

appear,

mentally,

that

fer

to the

wall,

tive

with

than

a gas.

should
sink,
phase

the

the

has

When

injected
the

this

and

theoretical

cooling

form

surface

of the

liquid

bustion

gases

and

into

core.

film

reduce

Disturbances
appear

adjacent

cause

This

which

potential.

free

in twoliquid-

gas

waves

it
heat

the

results

losses

of capillary

effecrather

is liquid,

of an annular

coolant

trans-

isothermal

diffuses

a combustion

introduces

a liquid

an

process

consisting

experi-

heat

be more

film

as
and

However,

the

as

coolant

it evaporates

verified

would

essentially

film

been

reducing

cooling

coolant

flow,

effect

film

behave
as

stream.

and

for simply

on the

to the

accelerated

com-

coolant

loss.
of fuel

orifices,

The
Sellers

theoretical
can

equation

be used

liquid-film-cooled

HEAT

stresses

an important

stresses

limits

is

through

cooling.

in the

is

form

a fuel-rich
by the

thermal

is

cooling

transfer

thermal

This

feasibility

coolant

protection

operational

cant

which

will
between

design

tion,

4-34

of holes.

"B."

surface

Consequently,
critical.

of film

heat

or

process.

"A"

wall.

advantage

it reduces

less

Liquid

Figure

rows

that

in the

therefore,

stations.

and

to be cooled.
heat

has

major

decreases

row

the

as

effective

at one

In an optimum
is provided

gases,

cases,

"A"

cover

be-

be injected

through

will

"C,"

film

through

between

referred

the

film-cooling

is introduced

fluid
row

transfer,

chamber

a model

coolant

combustion

In most

downstream

pro-

to in-

of interaction

and

must

holes

serve

commonly

mass
coolant

and

can

Because

tween

shows

walls,

a process

cooling.

result

more

or slots

chamber

fact

by

for design
thrust

and
of

chambers.

Gc

Zucrow
calculations

H
(4-33)

_o

Gg

OMBUSTIOH CHAMBER

tic

a(l

+bCpvc/Cpg)

where
_'FUEL

CHAaRER

WALL

Gc

Tc,o

: film

coolant

weight

area

of cooled

lb/in

_-sec

Gg

= combustion
unit area

gas weight
of chamber

_c

:-film

cooling

efficiency

= film

coolant

enthalpy

perpendicular

_000

00_

00_

Cplc

Figure

4-34..Film-cooling

model.

rate

to flow,

per

wall

flow
cross

rate per
section

Btu/lb
'

Cplc

=average
specific
heat at constant
sure of the coolant
in the liquid

Cpvc

= average
specific
heat at constant
sure of the coolant
in the vapor
Btu/lb-deg

unit

surface,

lh/in_-sec

Cpvc (Taw - Twg)


(TwgTco)+AHvc

Btu/lb-deg
I

flow

chamber

presphase,

presphase,

]16

Cpg

Taw
Twg

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

--average specific
heat at constant
pressure of the combustion
gases, Btu/lbdeg F
--adiabatic
wall temperature
of the gas,
deg R
=gas-side
wall temperature
and coolant
film temperature,
deg R

= coolant bulk temperature


at manifold,
deg R
AHvc = heat of vaporization
of coolant,
Btu/lb
a
= 2 Vd/Vm f
b
=(Vg/Va) - 1
I
=applicable
friction coefficient
for the
two-phase
flow between combustion
gases and liquid film coolant
Vd
--axial stream velocity of combustion
gases at edge of boundary layer, ft/sec

Taw-Twg
"Taw- Tco

=average
axial stream velocity
bustion gases, ft/sec

Vg

= axial stream velocity


gases at the center
chamber, ft/sec

of com-

of combustion
line of the thrust

In practice
the theoretically
determined
film
coolant flow would be inadequate
because
of
losses.
Therefore,
the film-cooling
efficiency
_?c
is introduced
to correct for this.
Liquid-filmcooling efficiency
values range from about 30 to
70 percent.
They are determined
experimentally
in actual hot firings of a specific
design or test
model.
Hydrocarbon
fuels have been found to be very
effective
liquid film coolants.
Their effectiveness is attributed
to their action as both film and
deposition
cooling agents.
As was mentioned
earlier, these fuels deposit carbon on the wall,
which serves as an effective
heat insulator.

Gaseous

Film Cooling

With the increasing


use of hydrogen,
gaseousfilm cooling has become important.
Even if hydrogen were injected
as a liquid for film-cooling
purposes,
the film between the combustion
gases
and the chamber wall would be heated within a
very short distance
to temperatures
critical,
after which the film would

above the
behave as a

gas.
For
thrust
Hatch
can be

design calculation
of gaseous-film-cooled
chambers,
the theoretical
equation of
and Papell can be used.
This equation
written as follows:

(4-34)

where
Taw

= adiabatic
deg R

Twg

= maximum allowable
gas side wall temperature,
deg R
= initial film-coolant
temperature,
deg R
=base of natural logarithms,
2.718

Tco

Vm

hg
e-(GcCpvcrlc)

Too
e

wall

temperature

of the gas,

hg

= gas-side
heat-transfer
Btu/in2-sec-deg
F

coefficient,

Gc

= film-coolant
weight flow rate per unit
area of cooled chamber wall surface,
lb/inLsec

Cpvc =average
specific
heat at constant
pressure of the gaseous film coolant,
Btu/lb-deg
F
?c
= film-cooling
efficiency
The film-cooling
efficiency
r/c corrects
for the
amount of gaseous-film
coolant lost into the combustion gas stream without producing the desired
cooling effect.
Values range from about 25 to 65
percent, depending
upon coolant injection
geometry and on flow conditions.
The above equation assumes
that a balance
exists between heat input and coolant temperature rise.
The heat input is based upon the gasside heat-transfer
coefficient
hg and the difference between the adiabatic
gas temperature
at
the wall and the coolant film temperature.
The
heat absorbed
is proportional
to the heat capacity of the coolant film from initial to final temperature values.
Once equilibrium
is reached, no
heat is transferred
to the wall (adiabatic
condition) and the chamber wall surface will have
achieved
the film-coolant
temperature
corresponding to the various axial locations.
Accordingly, the wall-surface
temperature
will range
axially from the value of initial coolant temperature to a maximum allowable
design wall temperature, at which point the next film-coolant
injection station must be provided.
It is the specific
aim of film-cooled
thrust chamber design to
accomplish
cooling with an optimum number of
coolant injection
stations.
Figure 4-35 shows an experimental
hydrogen
film-cooled
thrust chamber.
Cooling is provided
by four film-coolant
injecting
one downstream
of the throat.
injection,

in the direction

rings upstream,
Axial coolant

of combustion

gas

and

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

Figure

flow,

greatly

whereas

improves

normal
any

benefit,

coolant

into

the

typical

case,

mately

3 percent

Sample

Calculation

system
engine,

the

of large

film
of the

the

portions
gas

escape,

flow

thrust

approxi-

To

hydrogen

data

given

A-3

stage

at the

throat

0.001392

value

(4-10)

or (4-17).

(Taw)

must

transfer

thrust

As

= 5240 R

hg can be used
if a hydrocarbon

= 1900 R max

film

Tco

=50 R

be taken

Cpvc

=3.6

Taw
Twg

Assuming
efficiency,

Btu/lb-deg

a value
determine

flow rate per unit area


in the throat
section.

coolant,

for film-cooling

film-coolant

of cooled

and

heat-

there

is

without

gas-side

film

heat-transfer

in equation
fuel is used

of carbon

(4-10).
as the

deposition

(eq.

4-17).

the

principle

must

Cooling

chamber

Figure

surface

4-36

shows

of transpira-

tion cooling.
The coolant
is introduced
through
numerous
drilled
holes
in the inner chamber
wall.

given

data

into

equation

(4-34):

[
=

o.oou

e-_Oca6as)

0,00061

1.554=e\

Oc

designs,

material.
inner

52401900
524050

effect

account

Transpiration

In other
the

the

into

normal

that

weight

Solution
Substitute

the

and

gas-side

F average

of 0.5
the

found

with

Thus,

Btu/in2-sec-deg

wall

operation

to the

it was

coefficient
Note that

=0.0011

adiabatic
experimentally

chamber

no difference

a cor-

in equation

corrected

conditions.
coefficient,

cooling,

be used

cooling.
hg

lb/in:-sec

for a regenerative
film

be determined

specific

film-cooling

flux

added

This

can

the

heat

with

rected

practically

section:

the

system,

under

film-cooling

of the

are

chamber.

0.00061=
0.439

calculate

cooling

temperature

chamber

following

0.00061

Gc=_-

In a

was

propellant.

of the

thrust

of the

stream.

(4-5)

design

for the

in the

coolant

film-cooled

efficiency,

results

combustion

the

hydrogenoxygen,

film-cooling

injection

without

For

4-35.-Experimental

117

liner

to fig.

the

In both
is

4-28),

enclosed
forming

coolant

emerges.

coolant

flow

requirement

rate

per

unit

area

sec)

must

For

may
the

method.

be made

permeable

by an outer
a jacket

and
and

which

design,
coolant

of porous
chamber

shell

from

adequate

of cooled

be determined

by a practical

wall

cases,

(similar
the
the

weight

chamber

wall

then

implemented

total
flow

(lb/in:-

118

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

an efficiency
factor
used for calculations.

of approximately

0.85 is

The porous material used for the transpirationcooled chamber walls must be selected
and di-

Figure

4-36.-Transpiration

cooling

model.

Transpiration
coolant flow requirements
determined from theoretical
equations
turn out to
be significantly
lower than those for film cooling. This is due to the more efficient
coolant
distribution.
The Rannie equation
for transpiration cooling can be used to calculate
the theoretical coolant flow requirements:

Twg_Tc

o-

+ 1.18(Reb)l-1

\Og/ (Reb)"Prm 1

(4-35)

where
Taw

= adiabatic
wall temperature
of the gas,
deg R
Twg = gas-side
wall temperature,
deg R
Tco : coolant bulk temperature,
deg R (entering)
Gc =transpiration
coolant weight flow rate
per unit area of cooled chamber wall
surface,
lb/in2-sec
Gg

:combustion
gas weight flow rate per unit
area of chamber cross section perpendicular to flow, lb/in2-sec

Prm = mean film Prandtl number


e
=base of natural logarithms,
2.718
Reb = bulk combustion-gas
Reynolds number
Test data from various transpiration-cooling
experiments
have been in good agreement with
the Rannie equation.
However, the equation predicts coolant flows slightly lower than those
required in experiments.
It is recommended
that

mensioned
for correct hydraulic resistance
to
render the required coolant flow rate per unit
surface area.
It must also be able to withstand
the stresses
caused by the pressure
differential
between coolant and combustion
gases,
and
thermal stresses.
These requirements
impose
certain limitations
on the selection
of materials
and on construction
methods.
The mechanical
design of the coolant distribution
system, therefore, is an important factor for successful
application of transpiration
cooling.

Ablative

Cooling

Ablatively
cooled thrust chambers
have many
advantages
for upper-stage
applications.
They
are designed
to meet accumulated
duration requirements
varying from a few seconds to many
minutes.
Most designs are limited to lower chamber pressure
applications,
300 psia or less.
When assisted
by film cooling,
or by throat inserts made from refractory
materials,
successful
firings have been made up to a chamber pressure
level of 1000 psia.
In general,
ablative
chamber
construction
is rugged, exterior wall temperatures are held to a minimum and the cost is low.
Ablative
cooling is accomplished
by the
pyrolysis
of resins contained
in the chamber wall
material.
The thrust chamber construction
will
vary with mission requirements.
As shown in
figure 4-37, chamber and nozzle are composed of
an ablative
liner, a thifi layer of insulation,
and
a high-strength
outer shell.
The ablative
liner
is fabricated
from a phenolic-resin-impregnated
high-silica
fabric which is wrapped in tape form
on a mandrel at optimum orientation.
The thickness is programed as a function of chamber station to provide adequate
strength, char thickness,
and minimum weight for a particular
mission.
A
wrap of oriented phenolic-impregnated
asbestos
is placed on the outer (far) surface of the ablative liner as an insulator.
The high-strength
outer shell is composed of
layers of unidirectional
glass cloth for longitudinal stren_h,
and of circumferential-wound
glass
filaments
for hoop strength.
The glass wrap is
bonded with epoxy resin.
Aluminum alloy and

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

P'_ANGI_
C_LED

FOR RAO_ATIC_
-MOZZLE EXI"E_$10N

,,Lgr_ _"_

....

Figure

4-37.-Ablatively

cooled

thrust

Figure

chamber.

4-38.-Ablatively

with
stainless

steel

outer
the

119

also

are

sometimes

shell.

The

combined

ablative

liner

and

outer

shell

protects

the

used

thermal

of the

for the

resistance

insulation

and

keeps

throat

cooled

insert

for

thrust

high

chamber

chamber

pressure

applications.
of

layer

it at moderate

a = c [RrRvCpp
F2ktL

In

(1 RrRvCp(Taw-Td)-)ISLP

temperatures.
Figure

4-38

chamber
cent

shows

fitted

with

an

ablative-cooled

a throat

tungsten/2-percent

pyrolytic
ployed

have

insert

materials.

molybdenum

alloy

Although

than

installation
stalled

alloy,

thermal

-- char

= correction

lower

therefore

throat

graphite

has

a
to

design

insert

backups

depth,

data

it is vulnerable
making

The

heavy

where

results.

a much

and

shock,

critical.
with

best

has

advantage,

and
em-

alloy
tungsten-

the

graphite

weight
from

The

s] 4

(4-36)

98 per-

successfully

given

tungsten

substantial
fracture

been

has

pyrolytic

density

Both

molybdenum

graphite
as

thrust

insert.

for the

based

on experimental

specific

throat

section,

nation

pressure

design

and

op

of

= weight
fraction
of resin
ablative
material

Rv

=weight

fraction

versus

for better

total

at the

a nozzle
content

of pyrolyzed
resin

stag-

100 psia

Rr

and

is in-

in
factor

in the

resin

content

Rr

structural
results.
Insert
and backups
are bonded
to the thrust
chamber
main ablative
liner
with

Cp

= heat capacity
at constant
pressure
pyrolysis
gases,
Btu/lb-deg
F

epoxy

=density

:heat

adhesives.

formed
ceramic
have
space

of an

dicting

the

depth

surrounding

thrust

chamber
data
thrust
in the

throat),

that

the

of char

the

in

from

hot

firings

equation:

the

with

various

that

chamber
between
can

=thrust

chamber

Lp

:latent

heat

Taw

:adiabatic
deg

hot

(Pc)as

pyroby

lb/in

Btu/sec-in

2-

duration,

wall

sec

Btu/lb

temperature

of the

temperature

of resin,

gas,

F
F

= nozzle

stagnation

chamber

pressure,

psia
Results

(including

be expressed

deg

firing

of pyrolysis,

= decomposition

fir-

the charring

mass

T d

insu-

of the

after

indicate

relation

and on

in the

portion

and

for

material,
of char,

F/in

of pre-

exposure,

charred

during

absorbed,

chamber

of ablative
conductivity

deg

also

inserts

accuracy

variation

wall

the

the

during

combustion

is,

heat

following

per-

carbide,
throat

thrust

on

chambers

process

and

ablative

temperature

lation

lyzed

silicon
as

depends

soak-back

Test

have
Certain

applications.

mission

ablative

as

successfully

design

a given

ing.

such

used

engine

The

adhesives

up to 500 F.

materials,
been

the

These

satisfactorily

of

predicted

been

compared

from

firings

They

were

with

by equation
char

depth

of Refrasil-filled
found

to agree

experimental

data.

stream

throat,

of the

closely
for areas

depths

have

obtained

phenolic
very

However,
char

(4-36)
data

were

chambers.
with

the

downfound

to

120

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

be somewhat greater than predicted,


and when
using the equilibrium
gas temperature.
Temperature recovery in the boundary layer may be one
cause for the discrepancy.
A modified equation
is used, therefore,
to predict char depths in the
nozzle areas:
a =bt_e -247_

(4-37)

C=1.05;
Rr=0.3;
Rv=0.41;
Cp=0.38Btu/lbdeg F; p=0.061 lb/in3;
k=9.8x10
-6 Btu/
in2-sec-deg
F/in;
Lp=686
Btu/lh;
Taw
=5060R;
Td=1460R;
b=0.0335
Determine
the char thickness
at the throat and
combustion
chamber section,
and in the nozzle
at station
e = 5, after firing for the design duration of 410 seconds.

where
b = a constant
depending
upon the nature of the
ablative
shield (to be determined
experimentally)
e = nozzle expansion
area ratio at the investigated section
e =base of natural logarithms,
2.718
The char-rate analysis
is characterized
by
physical
dimensions
and the formation of a char
layer that progresses
from the heated surface
toward the supporting
wall.
During the pyrolysis
of the resin, the formation of a hard carbonaceous surface of increasing
thickness
is vital
because it resists
thermal and mechanical
ablation and chemical
attack.
At the charring interface, which slowly travels away from the hot
chamber gases, a large amount of heat energy is
absorbed
by pyrolysis;
i.e., melting and vaporization of the bonding material.
As gaseous
pyrolysis
products
flow through and out of this
char layer, they control the heat flux to the walls
by their own endothermic
decompositions,
and by
migrationinto the boundary layer.
No gross dimensional change occurs due to
energy considerationsthroughoutmost of the
thrustchamber; however, mechanical erosionis
evidenced in some designs in the throatregion,
due to the high prevailing
shear stresses.
At
chamber pressures
below 150 psia, throat erosion
is generally
reduced.
Throat erosion rates vary
from 0.0005 to 0.00005 in/see
The adaptation
of ablative
thrust chamber
technology
to the special
field of space engines
has been significantly
advanced during recent
years.
Approaches
typical for this type of engine
will be discussed
in chapter XI.

Solution
From table 3-5: (Pc)ns = 100 psia
Substitute
this and given data into equation
(4-36).
The char thickness
at the throat and
combustion
section results
as:

xln

(14 0'3 x 0"41x 0"38


686 (5060-1460))l_

= 1.05 x [2.82 xln 1.245] s =0.828


Char thickness
equation
(4-37):

at nozzle

a = bt_e - o._47e = 0.0335

(1)"4

in

station

e = 5, using

x (410) -s x (2.718) -.247xs


l

= 00335
= 0.599

Radiation

x 20.248 x (2.7182) 8"1

in

Cooling

Cooling by radiatiofi
heat transferis practical
only forthrustchamber nozzle extensions,where
pressure stressesare lowest. High metal-wall
temperatures
are required to attain the heat
fluxes needed.
Assuming negligible
temperature
drop through the metal and coatings,
if any, the
steady-state
heat transfer
for a radiation-cooled
nozzle,
as shown schematically
in figure 4-39,
can be expressed
by the following correlation:

hgc (Taw - Twg) = eaTwg 4

Sample Calculation(4-6)
The followingdesign data are given forthe
ablativelycooled thrustchamber of the A-4 stage
engine:

IO .:x xO.41xO.38xO.061
9.8x I0-6 x 410

a=l.05

where
hgc

= overall gas-side
Btu/in2-sec-deg

thermal
R

conductance,

(4-38)

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

121

Twg
hgc =7.1
COMBUSTION
GASES

10 -s

Assuming

Tow

q = hgc(Taw.Twg )

RADIATION

Btu/in2-sec-deg

a total

wall surface,
heat-radiated

R; Taw=4900R

emissivity

determine
flux.

of 0.95

the

bulk

of outer

temperature

and

q = E'O Tw4
Solution
Substitute

Figure

4-39.-Schematic

of radiation

data

into

7.1 x 10 -s (4900-

cooling.

equation

Twg )
: 0.95

Taw = adiabatic
deg

wall

temperature

wall temperature
deg R

= total
emissivity
=Stefan-Boltzmann
constant,
(deg
The

109 (4900-

tem-

Twg

10 -'4

Btu/in2-sec

value
which
the structural
under

which

temperature

range

ing.

A molybdenum

titanium,

and

tungsten

alloy

strength

low

emissivity

flux=7.1

10 -s (4900-2660)

INJECTOR
The

both
of

condi-

alloy

appear

DESIGN

function of an injector, which

at 3500 R.

against

oxidation,
sides

chamber

as shown

other

2600 R.

been

range

gas-side
of their

alloys,

metals

of the
for re-

relative

judgment

coatings

to that
is

advised

for a specific

of MoSi 2 is
such

on

of the

alloys,

before

using

are

no

than

help
the

Calculation

The

following

stage

area

ratio

chamber
= 8:

design
nozzle

data

are

extension

given

injectors

were

been

chemical

and
within

this

For

chemical

breakup,
transfer

derstood,
injector

data.
obtained,

the

is established.

it was

physical
the

the

as
a given

be

and

studied

at

money.

design

of

prediction
that

are

chamber,
for initial

propellant

droplet

approach

usually
and

processes

a basis

the

results

and

combustion

reactions

should

good

of time

toward

de-

with

understanding

mixing,

before

While

amounts

information

design.
the

approach,

approach

is through

encountered

heat

of large

rational

of the

of

past,

eventually

experi-

for the

still

most

these

at station

there

In the

test

stream
A-4

However,

a successful

expense

tion,

devel-

injector

to assure

injectors

(4-7)

available.

of previous

using

been

rules

A more

application.

now

have

of successful

by a trial-and-error

have
the

of injectors

details

hard-and-fast

signed

is required,
materials

many

design.
at

number

and

designs
are

as

higher

A great

jector
Sample

the propellants

Objectives

oped

wall surface
may be needed.
Because
brittleness
and coefficient
of thermal

expansion

injector introduces and

chamber, and atomizes and mixes


for satisfactory combustion.

Design

successfully

of ceramic

The

percent

Titanium

capability

of bare

coatings

also

metal.

operated

If a temperature

working

insulating

commercial

have

in figures 4-1 and 4-2, is sim-

short-

a coating

of the

cool-

Because

and

is located

in general, at the forward end of the combustion

meters the propellant flow to the combustion

percent

sufficient

of molybdenum

both

0.5

tantalum-10

to have

for use

strength

to radiation

containing

a 90 percent

on
25,

short-time

Btu/in2-sec

ilar to that of the carburetor of an internal com-

of 2600 R to 3500 R

required

and

Twg)

=0.159

is

will satisfy
capability

applied

sistance

Haynes

x (Twg)

cooling

operational

possess

successfully

time

x 10 -14

= 2660 R

bustion engine.
alloys

been

enced

wall

Heat

to radiation

used

have

the

= bulk

4.5

approach

material

Only

alloys

4 = 22.4

of outer
wall surface
radiation
heat transfer

0.3337

to determine
a Twg
equation
(4-38)
and

in the

(Twg)

R) 4

design

the wall
tions.

gas,

0.3337

Twg =gas-side
perature,
a

of the

(4-37):

the

combinakinetics

formation,
and
to the

and
in-

clearly
design

of
and
unof an

17)

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

There are numerous requirements


to qualify a
given injector
for operational
use.
The following
are the most important objectives
for injector
design:
1. Combustion
stability.-In
combination
with
a given combustion-chamber
configuration
and
for a given propellant
combination,
an injector
should give smooth combustion,
during engine
start and stop transients
as well as during
steady-state
operation.
Depending upon the propellants
and their
ignition characteristics,
the arrival sequence
of
oxidizer and fuel streams during start is of great
importance.
Any accumulation
of unburned propellants
in the combustion
chamber prior to ignition must be prevented
to avoid destructive
chamber-pressure
surges.
Similarly,
during
engine shutoff, chamber overheating
and burnout
may be prevented
by maintaining
a fuel-rich mixture. Arrival sequences
are best controlled
by
propellant
valve timing.
Furthermore,
minimum
feed-line
and injector-manifold
volumes between
propellant
valves and injector face will materially improve propellant
sequencing
during start
and stop.

To prevent chamber-pressure
fluctuations
from
affecting the propellant
flows and thus from inducing combustion
instability,
sufficient
pressure drop through injector orifices
must be maintained.
Effective
and even mixing of the
propellants
will be achieved
through the choice
of a suitable
injector impingement
pattern.
This
will help to minimize accumulation
within the
combustion
chamber of unburned propellants
which could cause local detonations
and thus
trigger combustion
instability.
Under certain
conditions,
combustion
instabilities
of the tangential oscillation
mode can be prevented
by
isolating
local detonations
by partitioning
the
injector face into several compartments,
as
shown in figure 4-40.
2. Performance.-Combustion
performance
of
an injector is influenced
by: propellant
mass
distribution;
local mixture ratios;
degree of
mixing of injected
propellants,
in either the liquid or the gaseous
phase, or both; droplet atomization and vaporization;
rate of heat input; and
chemical
reaction
rates.
These are predominantly
a function of suitable
manifolding
and proper
selection
of injector-hole
patterns.
The more

J "!iii',ll_{Ik={l!iI_ijll
[iiJlJ

Figure

4-40.-Baffled

injector.

DESIGN

OF

THRUST

CHAMBERS

thorough the mixing and uniform the distribution


of the oxidizer relative
to the fuel, produced by
the injector,
the more rapidly will the combustion
products reach the equilibrium
composition
necessary for optimum performance.
Although turbulence induced by the combustion
probably contributes
a major portion of the energy required for
gas-phase
mixing, thorough premixing
ot the
liquid propellants
must be accomplished
by the
injector if maximum performance
is to be achieved.
Furthermore,
reaction
between certain specific
propellant
combinations
pellants
cannot reliably
tained without it, since

such as hypergolic
probe initiated
and mainthe energy released
by

liquid-phase
reactions
supplements
the kinetic
energy available
for the process
of atomization
through combustion-gas
evolution.
In addition,
the heat release
from liquid-phase
reaction
accelerates
the process
of vaporization.
Experience
has shown that for a given injection velocity,
propellant-droplet
size is reduced
with decreasing
injector-orifice
size.
Smaller
droplet size, in turn, results
in a higher overall
vaporization
rate, as a function of increased
total droplet surface area.
This is true whether
the heat of vaporization
is supplied internally
via liquid phase reaction or externally
by heat
transfer from the hot gaseous
combustion
products.
Consequently,
injector designs
with the
largest practical
number of injection
elements
can be expected
to be the most efficient
ones in
a given combustion
chamber volume.
3. Structural
integrity.-An
injector
should be
able to withstand
the maximum loads incurred
during all phases of engine operation.
Sufficient
cooling must be provided to prevent the injector
face or any other portion from overheating.
4. Hydraulic qualities.-The
holes or orifices
of the injector must be designed
to effect predetermined
pressure
drops at specific
flow rates,
and to atomize the propellants
properly.
A low
injector pressure
drop is desirable
from the
standpoint
of overall engine-system
performance.
However, minimum pressure
drop is determined
from combustion-stability
considerations.
5. Combustion
chamber heat protection.-An
injector
should be designed
to avoid formation of
hot spots or streaks on the combustion
chamber
wall. Complete mixing of the propellants
wilt
prevent oxidizer-rich
peak temperature
zones
from forming, although
this may not prevent

AND

OTHER

COMBUSTION

DEVICES

123

streaks of high mixture ratio (O/F) from occasionally


reaching the chamber wall.
To offset
this, a special set of fuel holes is often provided
at the periphery
of the injector,
close to the
chamber wall.
Excess
fuel along the chamber
wall is thus provided which tends to lower the
O/F mixture ratio of any errant streak.
It also
assists
in cooling the chamber wall.
6. Special requirements.-Certain
engine systems are required to operate at off-nominal
conditions,
such as at lower thrust levels during
throttling,
or other than nominal mixture ratios
as a result of propellant-utilization
control.
In
these cases,
injectors
must be capable of operating reliably under modified as well as rated
conditions.

Injector

Configurations

A typical injector
design construction
and
propellant-distribution
method is illustrated
in
figure 4-2. Different distribution
methods are
shown in figures 4-41 and 4-42. The injector in
figure 4-42 uses an integral
faceplate.
This plate
is secured to the main injector
body by brazing it
at the periphery and at posts which are an integral part of the main body.
A fuel compartment
is located immediately
behind the faceplate,
and
fed from an inlet passage.
The oxidizer
compartment is separated
from the fuel by a partition. The fuel is injected
through orifices
drilled in the faceplate,
while the oxidizer is
injected
through orifices
drilled in the posts.
The injector
construction
for a typical liquidbipropollant
gas generator
is illustrated
in figure
4-43. The copper injector
body is secured to the
stainless-steel
outer shell by brazing.
The
oxidizer inlet forms an integral part of the injector body.
Fuel is supplied through a manifold in
the outer shell.
In this injector,
2 fuel streams
impinge on each oxidizer stream, producing
a
total of 44 impingement
points.
A variety of injector
patterns
have been designed to satisfy
the needs of various propellant
combinations.
In most cases,
for good mixing
the injected
streams are made to impinge at a
predetermined
point.
The impingement
point
should be as close to the injector face as heattransfer conditions
permit.
The arrangement
in
which all impinging
points are the same distance from the injector face is called uniplanar

124

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

=_

o_

=i

|._.

t.

'-o

_f!:i

251 ._

ii

DESIGN

OF

THRUST

CHAMBERS

GIMBAL BEARING

AND

OTHER

COMBUSTION

125

DEVICES

ploys nonimpinging
oxidizer and fuel streams
which emerge normal to the injector
face. It
relies entirely
on combustion
chamber turbulence
for mixing.
While being the simplest
to fabricate, the showerhead
injector exhibits
poor performance in most applications,
with the exception of certain cryogenic
propellant
combinations.

- MOUNTING SURFACE

2. Doublet (fig. 4-44b).-In


this design,
oxidizer and fuel jets are made to impinge in pairs.
Thus good liquid-phase
mixing and atomization
is obtained.
One of the disadvantages
of this

0-

doublet arrangement
is that even if the injector
holes have been accurately
drilled,
the resultant
angle of momentum vector, or beta angle, /_,will
vary with mixture ratio, particularly
if a large
impinging angle is used.
This variation
can
adversely
affect combustion
performance
and
chamber-wall
heat transfer.
The doublet design
POSTS
|

INTEGRAL

_i

FACE PLATE

_T_

_-- FUEL INLET

SECTION
' A-A_

PASSAGE
OXIDIZER INLET

Figure

4-42.-Integral

lace

plate

injector.

impingement.
If two or more different
impingingpoint distances
are used (fig. 4-44), the arrangement is called biplanar or multiplanar
impingement.
Numerous tests have been conducted
to determine impingement-angle
and distance
effects.
Large included
angles will enhance stability,
but can result in some of the propellants
splashing back on the injector face, which can cause
burnouts.
Close spacing of the impinging holes
in a pair has similar advantages
and disadvantages, as has increased
spacing between pairs.
The satisfactory
design, value for the included
angle is usually found to be between 20 and
45 . The injector face can be further protected
against
overheating
by circulating
the propellants on the back side of the faceplate
or by
introducing
film coolant (propellant)
on the
surface.
Some of the impingement
patterns used
are described
below:
1. Showerhead
(fig. 4-44a).-This
pattern era-

is frequently
oxygen.

used

in systems

using

liquid

3. Triplet (fig. 4-44c).-Two


streams of one
propellant
impinging
symmetrically
on one stream
of the other propellant
will eliminate
the change
of vector angle fl, as a result of mixture-ratio
variations.
This arrangement
also provides
intimate mixing.
Application
and propellant
combination
will determine
whether two oxidizer
jets will impinge on one fuel jet, or vice versa.
Injectors
using this triplet pattern have given
high combustion
performance.
These injectors
have been widely used for various propellant
combinations.
4. Quintuplet
(fig. 4-44d).-Four
streams of
one propellant
impinging
on one stream of the
other propellant
in a symmetrical
quintuplet
pattern provide excellent
mixing and performance.
This design has been applied for various propellant combinations.
5. Self-impinging
(fig. 4-45a).-This
pattern,
also known as a like-on-like
impingement,
generally employs self-impinging
pairs of fuel and
oxidizer.
Mixing is accomplished
in the combustion chamber by volatilization
of the propellants
and by turbulence.
This design usually provides
good inherent combustion
stability,
at a moderate
performance
level.
Applications
have been successful
for both cryogenic
and storable
hypergolic propellant
combinations.
A modification
of
this design provides
for secondary
impingement
of the two propellants
following self-impingement.

1_

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

127

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

7.
FUEL
_ANIFaI.D

FU(L

tor

slot

(fig.

4-45c).-The

concentric

pairs

ring-slot

injec-

of annular

slots

ILrrA
."

A_,_e.. (

which

eject

The

OX_Z[R
U,UlIFO_.0

Ring

employs

the

slots

sheets

are

propellants

as

so arranged

impinge

much

conical

that

in the

fuel

same

sheets.

and

oxidizer

manner

as

in

_/
P

pNJI_CTO_

_cz

the

doublet-type
8.

O_

_ClE
p
{al

IJ(C_R_Ac_[JI

_OWER

NEAO

_L_L

plates

propellants

are

in the

splash

plates.

2:2

"--

The

impinging

liquid

ignite

until

have

they

left

are

into

intimately

combustion
gentially

be

shows
and

of the

premixing

not

a typical
are

chamber,

before

by a gas

chamber

cool
do

oxidizer

premixing

at the

kept

plate.

4-46

mixed

chamber

this
by

which

Fuel
the

the

For

deflected

will

the

while

state.

are

plates

injector.

radially

they

liquid

propellants

Premix.-Figure

jected

injector

mixing

propellants

by the

9.

F!

still

injected

premix-type

4-45d).-This

propellant

OXOZ_

(fig.

for good

the
FUEL
M,I.mFOLD

C-

Splash

is designed

purpose,

{hi OOU_UET

injector.

entering

jet

end.

inwhere

the

introduced

The

tan-

length

and

I_I_FOI.I:I

diameter
to the

INJI[CT _

(el

the

TRIPLET

mass

4-44.-Injector

impinging

patterns.

of propellants

time

of the

reaction
10.

Figure

Throttleable

ments
and

O_ltlt
u#*lrO_.o

lunar

typical

N
_.,

slot

,O*T'"_'"_

vehicle

soft

areas.

and

docking

is

with

is a very

as

orbit

maneuvers,

engine

Figure

injector

This

such

demand

control.

throttlable

as

require-

missions,

landings,

of thrust

relation

critical,

propellants.

rendezvous

capable

with

is

injector.-Certain

for space

corrections,
=

chamber

flow

systems

4-47a

shows

variable

effective

injectionmeans

of

_J,J

controlling

the

propellant

flows

and

injector

Ira.==

pressure

The

drops

design

--injI

tb)

O0 - AXUU,

parts,

complications.
as

shown

is introduced

thrust

into

levels.

however,

Another

injection

method,"

engine

of moving

throttlable

PUlL

at various

addition

causes

approach

to a

system

is the

"aeration

in figure

4-47b.

_ An inert

the

injector

propellant

gas

mani-

OX_Z_

fold
ii,l._C,r

live

for reduced

of the

thrust

levels.

propellant/gas

Through

mixture

ratio,

variation

the

effective

I/.OT

density

of the

wide

range

without
can

affecting

has

_L_L

tling

O_FCI
(1RI_

SLOT

Figure

(d)

4-45.-Injector

impinging

$P{.ASH

Coaxial

ploys

two

lants,

which

(fig.

concentric
are

patterns.

4-45b).-This

injector

tubes

two

injected

for the
coaxially.

up

be

by

the

to a ratio

source

tanks.

range

This

of rocket-engine

of 100

over

thrust

level

stability.

same

propellant
the

varied

desired

The
used

gas

to

method
throt-

to 1.

F_.ATI[

Design
For

6.

the

increased

can
any

combustion

be supplied

pressurize
m_cro_

propellants

to achieve

em-

ters,

Calculations
the
such

design
as

of injectors,

injector

pressure

various
drop,

parameimpingement

propel_Astron_utics

magazine,

December

1962,

pp. 36-37.

128

DESIGN OF LIQUID

and

resultant

structural
able

vector
loads,

angle

can

relationship,

be calculated

PROPELLANT

Injection

and
with

reason-

Drop

injection

pressure

be calculated

propellant

velocity

(oxidizer

V (in/sec)

can

or fuel)

injection

be calculated

from

APi (lb/in

_) can

-XPi='_g

:2-_p

where

g is the

gravitational

Cd is a dimensionless
V= _---Ap

(4-39)

jet

contraction)

of injector
The

where

g, is

the

propellant

sec;

A is the

in2;

and p is the

weight

calculated

flow

injector

propellant

rate,

orifice

density,

lb/in

lb/

area,

orifice

and

periment

z.

_OXIDIZER
_NJECTING
", ORIFICE

G,sJE'r

,i..-,

N o t_

._.

nc

;"')';RE_'_'_,._

co,,8os_',o,,

...--l,_f'Z_, ( - /-'-;;,:;:"

TANGENTIAL

[}

[ _

ORIFICE

%._'%J
"

(water

"

injection

Resultant
The

Angle

the

varies

resultant

the

type

tive,

injector.

and

when

the

vector

////

pressure.

as the

is directed

axis

of a pair
beta

of

angle,

is directed
angle
is positoward

the

F THRUST
F

VARIABLE
AREA
OXIDIZER INJECTING

___

ANNULARSLOT

FUEL
VALVE

"_

0XIDIZER

THROTTLE__

] CHAMBER

MANIFOLD
._ _- CHAMBER
THRUST

THROTTLE/
VALVE
OXIDIZER/_'-__'='7_)_

0
/_,,._--

MOVABLE
/
PINTLE RING-"

for

chamber

_.
By definition
when the vector
toward
the chamber
wall, the beta

OXIDIZER
IAANIFOLD

pres-

value

15 to 20 per-

vector

is defined

of dis-

Streams
thrust

momentum

streams

from

give

For

stagnation

of Impinging

between

bore

injection

design

chamber-nozzle

angle

impinging

4-46.-Prernixing

drop

orifices

value

a lower

0.5

by ex-

coefficient.

rule-of-thumb

pressure

from

smooth

a higher

gives

The

Injector
and

velocity,

coefficient

of the

and

L,,__F

of the

drop.

ranges
accurately

tests).

discharge

--

flow

values

l_J

FUEL
ItANIFOLD

Figure

"

coefficient

be determined

high

cent

i_
_

can

entrance

sure

and

is a function

configuration.

of this

well-rounded

charge

in/sec2;

(velocity

which

with

injector
GAS

constant,

discharge

coefficient

value

to 0.92

given
-oFUEL
INJECTING
RIFICE

(4-40)

the

relation:

_ANIFOLD

drop

as

Velocity

The
basic

Pressure

The

accuracy.

Injection

ROCKET ENGINES

INJECTOR
FACE

_
INERT GAS
CONTROL
VALVES

[ /
b"

L/

ANNULARSLOT
FUEL
/_ANIFOLD

(A) VARIABLE AREA INJECTOR


Figure

4-47.-Throttleable

(B) AERATION THROTTLEABLE INJECTINGSYSTEM


injecting

methods.

129

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

central

axis

of the thrust

chamber,

the beta angle

is negative.
With a hypergolic-type
propellant
combination,
a positive
beta angle (2 to 5 )
tends to increase
the combustion
performance

Rmby

causing recirculation
and better mixing of the
liquid propellants
along the chamber wall.
However, in a cryogenic
propellant
combination,
where gaseous mixing is predominant,
the combustion performance
will not be noticeably
affected
by the beta angle.
A negative
beta
angle should be used in this case to avoid the
possibility
of hot streaks on the chamber wall
caused by excessive
heat transfer.
The beta angle may be readily calculated,
from the principle
of conservation
of momentum:

wzVt sin a, -w_V2 sin a2


tan fl=Ce_V I cos at +_i'2V2 cos a2

(4-41)

For the impinging


streams
shown in figure
4-48, al and a_ are the respective
angles between the thrust chamber axis and the streams;
1 and _i'2 are the weight flow rates;
V 2 are the injection
velocities.
Injection
Momentum Ratio
The injection
momentum
by the expression

-/I

ratio

where ti, o and wt are weight flow rates, and Vo


and V! are injection
velocities
for oxidizer
and
fuel.
The injection
momentum ratio is a useful
injector design parameter
for the prediction
of
combustion
stability
and performance
of certain
propellant
combinations.
In the design of oxygenhydrogen injectors,
the value of the momentum
ratio varies from 1.5 _o 3.5 for liquid hydrogen
injection,
and from 0.5 to 0.9 for gaseous
hydrogen injection.
StructuralLoads
The main loads to be considered in the structuraldesign of injectorsresultfrom propellant
pressures behind the injectorface, and in the
manifolds. During steady-statemain-stage operation,the pressureload on the injectorface is
equal to the injectorpressuredrop:
Pt = APi

THRUST

where Pp is the propellant


valve opening.

POINT

Sample

/ //dHA;ABEk
W2,V2
Figure

WALL
4-48.-Resultant
ang]e
streams.

of impinging

(4-44)

where P! is the pressure


load on the injector
face, Pm is the pressure
load in the manifold;
APi is the injector pressure
drop; and (Pc)i is
the injector-end
chamber pressure.
During start transients,
however,
maximum
pressure
loads on the injector may be substantially higher than during steady state.
When the
propellant
valves are opened rapidly, propellants
rushing into the empty injector passages
can
cause severe hydraulic
ram. This pressure
load
can be estimated
empirically
as
Pi =Pm = 4 Pp

"--T--

is

can be defined

,_

(4-42)

The pressure
load in the injector
manifolds
equal to the sum of the injector-end
chamber
pressure
and the injector pressure
drop:
Pra = (Pc)i + APi

(4-42)

and V_ and

CH
wl,v

(YoVo
_vtV t

Calculation

pressure

(4-45)
at time of

(4-8)

Using data given in tables 3-2 and 3-3, determine the injector
orifice sizes,
injection
velocities and momentum ratios for the A-1 and A-2
engines.

130

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Solution
(a) A-1 Engine
Thrust chamber propellant
flow rates are 1941
lb/sec
(oxidizer)
and 827 lb/sec
(fuel); propellant densities
are 71.38 lb/ft 3 (oxidizer)
and
50.45 lb/ft 3 (fuel);
injector pressure
drops are
200 psi for both propellants.
Based on component test results
an injector orifice discharge
coefficient
Cd of 0.75 is used for both sides.
Substituting
it into equation (4-40), and converting feet to inches:
For the oxidizer

side:

2o0=

( 1941 h

2x32.2x12x71

Total

oxidizer

injector

38 --_1 _'0"75A]
"
1728
orifice

area:

Ao = 32.4 in 2

For the fuel side:

In
neer,
data,
using

Rm-

2 32.2 12 50.45 1-_28 \0''5

1211941
144 x 827

- 1.97

(b.._)A-2 Engine
From table 3-3, the propel]ant
flow rates for
the thrust chamber are 285.2 lb/sec
(oxidizer)
and 54.5 lb/sec
(fuel); the propellant
densities
are 71.38 lb/ft 3 (oxidizer)
and 0.72 lb/ft 3 (fuel;
gaseous hydrogen at 180 R); the injector pressure drops are 160 psi (oxidizer)
and 60 psi
(fuel).
With the coaxial injecting
pattern (fig.
4-45b), experimental
tests give a value of 0.62
for the oxidizer-side
discharge
coefficient
and a
value of 0.9 for the fuel side.
Substitute
these
into equation (4-40).
For the oxidizer side:

( 227 ,

200 =

support of the injector development


engiwho may wish to compare with earlier test
the injection
momentum ratio is determined,
equation
(4-42):

160=

At)

1
4

2 x 32.2 x 12 71.38x.

1^^

( 285.2 ,_2
A oJ
\0.62
X

lr[_5

Total

fuel injector

orifice

area:

At= 16.4 in 2

An injector pattern of 700 pairs of selfimpinging


streams is used for both oxidizer and
fuel. The following orifice areas and diameters
result:
32.4
ao = 1-i-_-_= 0.0232

in 2

do= 0.172

Total

in2

d[ =0.122

in

For the oxidizer:


= 1452 in/sec
32.4 x 71.3_.___8
1728

V = AP

area:

A o =6.43 in 2

1
( 54.5 V
12o.72----- 1 ko-Y_AJ
1728

60:
2_32.2_

injector

fuel orifice

area:

At= 13.79

Use a total of 300 coaxial elements


injector.
The individual
orifice areas
eters will be
6.43
ao = 3--_-= 0.0214
13.79
at =--=
300

1941

orifice

in

From equation
(4-39), and using orifice areas
obtained above for available
5P and Cd, mean
injection velocities
are determined:

Wo

oxidizer

For the fuel side:

Total
16 4
a[ =_=0.0117

injector

0.0459

in:

for the
and diam-

do =0.165

in 2

or 121 ft/sec
Use a tube
The diameters

inner wall thickness


of 0.025inch.
for the annular fuel orifice will be

For the fuel:


dr=do
wt
Vt=-Atpt

827
16.4-- 50.45
1728

1728 in/secor

in:

+2 0.025=0.215

in

144 ft/sec
dt2=V(4at+dt12)=0.323

in

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

From equation

(4-39),

the injecting

velocities

are
For the oxidizer:
wo
Vo = A-_p -

285.2
71.38-1076
6.41

in/sec

or 89.6 ft/sec

For the fuel:


flit

54.5

Vt=_'r=.r. 1:3 79 0.72 =9500 in/sec


1728

From equation
ratio

Rm

Experimental

(4-42),

the injection

or 790 ft/sec

momentum

285'2 x 89"6 = 0.593


- 54.5 790

Evaluation

of Injector

Designs

The design of an injector can be improved


through experimental
testing.
Three types of
tests are usually employed:
hydrostatic
pressure, water flow, and hot firing.
The hydrostatic
pressure
tests are used to determine
whether the
injector structure
will withstand
the required
pressure
loads.
The water flow tests are used
to evaluate
the following design characteristics:
1. Effective
injector pressure drop.-The
data
from the water-flow tests can be used to determine the orifice-discharge
coefficient
and to predict the injector pressure
drop for the design
propellant,
with corrections
for density and
viscosity.
2. Injection pattern.-Injection
pattern and
impingement
can be observed,
and faulty operation can be detected
and corrected.
3. Atomization.-Water-flow
tests at velocities corresponding
to those employed in actual
service indicate
the quality of atomization
to be
expected
with the actual propellants.
The true injector operational
characteristics,
such as performance,
combustion
stability,
and
heat-transfer
characteristics
for main-stage
conditions,
as well as start-and-stop
transients,
can
only be fully evaluated
by hot firing tests, in a
thrust chamber of representative
design or a
"workhorse"
equivalent.

131

It is often beneficial
if during the hot-firing
tests of a given injector configuration,
certain
operational
parameters
such as injector pressure
drops, thrust chamber shape, and L* can be
changed to determine
the effects on performance
and stability.
In such an experimental
evaluation program injector,
orifice hole patterns
can
be redrilled or holes plugged,
until an optimual
configuration
is obtained.
Heat-transfer
characteristics
are an important
factor when evaluating
an injector design.
Temperature-measuring
instruments
embedded
in
chamber walls and injector
face are required to
measure heat-transfer
rates and to detect local
hot spots.
Instrumentation
for measuring
propellant flows, chamber pressure,
and combustion
vibration
characteristics
are similarly
important
for determining
the true levels of injector performance and stability.

4.6

GAS-GENERATING

DEVICES

In liquid propellant
rocket engine systems,
gases are required to power the propellant
feed
systems and other subsystems.
Bottled compressed
gases such as helium can be employed
for these purposes;
however, the use of higher
temperature
gases generated
by suitable
devices
gives much higher overall system performance.
Gases at temperatures
ranging from 400 to
1000 F have been generated
for pressurizing
propellant
tanks.
Gases in the range from 1200
to 1700 F are used to drive gas turbines
for
pump-fed systems.
Where ever possible,
the
engine system primary propellants
are used for
gas-generating
purposes
in the interests
of overall system simplicity.
However, for certain
applications,
such as for a pressurized
gas-fed
system or for starting
a turbopump-fed
system,
high-pressure
propellants
other than those tapped
off the primary system are required to supply the
gas-generating
systems.
Most operational
engine systems
use special
devices
for gas generation.
However, tapping
hot gases from the main chamber has shown
promise for certain applications.
The following
is a list of design objectives
for operational
gas
generators:
(1) Ability to produce gases safely, with required properties
(temperature,
pressure,

132

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

nonexplosive)
in a compact unit, at the
required flow rate
(2) Ability to start and stop smoothly,
without abrupt temperature
surges, pressure
oscillations,
or overflow of unburned
propellants.
(3) Ability to operate over a wide range of
propellant
flow rates and (in the case of
bipropellants)
mixture ratios, and to
respond closely
to the control system.
(4) Ability to maintain
safe shutdown without
complicated
purging and draining systems.
(5) Ability to restart
safely (restartable
engine systems only)
Additional
design requirements
depend on the
particular
engine system involved.
Gas generators
can be classified
according
to
the propellants
employed:
(1) Solid propellant
systems
(2) Liquid monopropellant
systems
(3) Liquid bipropellant
systems.

Solid Propellant

Solid propellant
gas generators
are applied to
liquid propellant
engine systems for limitedduration
applications
only, such as for turbine
spinners
for engine start, or as pressurants
for

MI L-T$ PLACES
ON

Figure

4-49.-Disposable

solid

ENGINES

short-duration
pressure-fed
systems.
The temperature of the gases generated
by solid propellants is generally
in excess
of 2000 F and is
not suitable
for uncooled components
over extended durations
Diluents can be used with a
loss of basic simplicity.
Figure 4-49 shows the typical design of an
operational
solid-propellant
gas generator
used
to supply power to the turbine for engine start.
It is built in the form of a cartridge
that bolts to
a flange at the liquid bipropellant
gas generator
(shown in fig. 4-51) The particular
cartridge
shown is a disposable
type that cannot be reloaded and reused.
Upon an engine start signal,
two initiators
or igniters
set off solid propellant
combustion.
Twenty milliseconds
after start, the solid
grain produces
a gas-flow rate of approximately
4.68 pounds per second.
It will maintain
this
flow rate for approximately
1.0 second.
This
gas generator
operates
at 2500 F and at a chamber pressure
of 1000 psia.
The product gas
renders an approximate
characteristic
velocity
of
4000 ft/sec.
A burst diaphragm located just
upstream of the gas generator
orifice is used to
seal the unit during storage.
It is ruptured by
the increased
gas pressure
at start.
Body and
end cap are made of 4130 steel.

Gas Generators

|GNrrER
pELLTS
35 GRAMS

ROCKET

6841
TABS

propellant

gas generator

(SPGG).

133

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

Solid
posed

propellants
surfaces

function
the

uniformly

at a rate

of the

which

temperature

surrounding

given

burn

propellant

The

can

is

and

gases.

at the
primarily

the

be expressed

systems

control

pressure

correlation

these

exof

and

dictable

for a

as

main

linear

k_ =constant
rate

burning

representing
of a given

initial

the

of 1000

a chamber

are

psia

pressure,

psia

allowing

for the

propellant

burning

pressure,
The

flow

can

rate

at a given

weight

generator

sensitivity

rate

of the

to changes

in

temperature.

of a solid

be calculated

propellant

gas

by

AbRpp

(4-47)

and

monopropel-

the

generator

Ab :burning
pp

area,

= propellant

It can

that

of constant
which

The

correlation

ator

orifice

through

flow

applied

with

pounds

sectional

area.
ranges

able

design

rate

per

bed,

is about

The

of stainless-

brass

0.4

of the

that

gener-

a propellant
burning

Pc,

be

APb
gas

the

Ab,

and

expressed

grain
area.

gas

gener-

as

Gb

: throughput,

Pc

= gas

orifice

generants

Gas
such

hydrazine
in many

mit a simple

generator

mixture-ratio

adjustments.

in 2

for a given

propeb

temperature.

Monopropellant

and

area,

characteristic

Monopropellants
(H202)

propellant

flow

of catalytic
propellant

can

be approxi-

+ C2t

(4-49)

0.9

Generators

as

hydrogen

(N2H4)

have

peroxide
been

applications.
system
The

used

They

and

do

not

advantage

as

perrequire
of

through

the

catalytic

lb/in2-sec

generator
of the

mentally

where

Liquid

allow-

psi

= accumulated

(4-48)

at a given

bed

The

19s

drop

=pressure

end

Pc = k2 _--_o]

lant

catalytic

The
bed

800-

by

bed,

generator

is,
area

Pc

constant

between

k 2 : constant

which

cross-

2 to 3 inches.

lb/in2-sec.

across

C,, C2 :design

Ao:gas

of bed

or

screens

or grids,

of approximately

cross-sectional

drop

pack

wire

plates

length

throughput,

unit

percent

layers

inch

from

90
screen

end

square

of a typical

using

catalytic

a preload

per

generally

mated

The

generator,

propellant

requires

can

and

where
lb/in

a solid

assures
area

gas

in 2

density,

be seen

design

rate

handling

schematic

C1Gb
flow

to

a third

special

gas

APb

wg = weight
lb/sec

gas

the

introduces

silver-plated

where

ator

of the

shows

by perforated

pressure
wg:

the

one

of alternate

mesh

1000

unless
as

propellants,

peroxide.

secured

pres-

easy
at pre-

However,

requiring

4-50

consists

steel

at a given

and

Pc =chamber
:constant

bed

burning

relatively
generated

tankage.

hydrogen

in/sec

linear

propellant,

temperature

sure

rate,

are
are

employed

system

often

Figure

:propellant

also

generator

monopropellant

where
R

is

system
gas

propellant
(4-46)

they
gases

temperatures.

engine

k 1 _1---_0]

that
the

monopropellant
lant

n:

is
that

chamber

pressure

catalytic

bed,

running

time,

constants

determined

for a given

bed

at the

psia
sec
expericonfiguration.

134

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Sample

Calculation

(4-9)

A hydrogen peroxide monopropellant


gas generator attached
directly to the inlet flange of a
turbine has the following design data:
Turbine
inlet pressure,
340 psia; total turbine nozzle
throat area, 0.776 in 2. Assume a c* value of
3080 ft/sec for 90 percent H202 and catalytic
bed design constants
C1 =7.2 104 and C 2 =0.021
psi/sec.
Determine
the gas generator
propellant
flow rate wg, catalytic
bed area, and pressure
drop after 480 seconds of accumulated
running
time.

Solution
Gas generator pressure = turbine inlet pressure
=340 psia.
Equivalent
gas generator
throat
area = total turbine nozzle throat area = 0.776 in 2.
Substitute

into equation

(1-32):

#g
Propellant
Use a design

flow rate
value

wg : 2.76 lb/sec

for catalytic

bed throughput,

Gb, of 0.4 lb/inLsec

Catalytic
Substitute

2.76
bed area =-_-.-.-ff=6.9

given

data

in 2

into equation
7.2x

Bed pressure

drop APb-

(4-49):

104 (0.4) 19s


(340) 0.9
+0.021x480

:63.5+

Liquid

Bipropellant

gases continue to burn with ambient air after


discharge,
requiring
special measures
to prevent
damage.
Figure 4-51 and table 4-2 describe
a typical
liquid bipropellant
gas generator
system.
It is
designed to produce hot gases using primary
engine propellants
(LO2/gP-1)
for driving the
turbine of a pump-fed system.
The control system consists
of two normally closed, linked
poppet valves that control the flow of propellants
to the gas generator
injector.
The valve assembly includes
an oxidizer strainer,
oxidizer poppet, fuel poppet, timing orifice,
actuating
piston,
and valve main body. The valve assembly
is
actuated
by gas pressure
which forces the piston
on the fuel side down to open the fuel poppet.
A
yoke integral with the piston actuates
the oxidizer poppet.
The valve design, through a combination of manifold volumes and LOX poppet

340 x 0.776 32.2

3080=

dizer rich, depending


on the propellant
combination. Oxidizer-rich
gases tend to accelerate
erosion of structural
members, while fuel-rich

10=73.5

psi

Gas Generators

This gas-generating
system is used more
widely in liquid rocket engine systems
than any
other, since it makes use of the primary rocket
engine propellants.
Bipropellant
gas generators
react in the same manner as the main thrust
chamber, except that the oxidizer-fuel-mixture
ratio will be adjusted
to yield the desired gas
temperatures
and chemical
properties.
The
gases generated
may be either fuel rich or oxi-

adjustment,
effects a slight oxidizer lead to
prevent detonations,
and a fuel-rich
cutoff to
eliminate
the possibility
of turbine burning.
The
propellants
flow through the poppets to the injector and into the gas generator
combustor,
are
mixed, and burn within the inner chamber and
combustor
body. Ignition of the propellants
is
accomplished
by two pyrotechnic
igniters.
A
gas duct with two flanges opposite
to each other
is located at the end of the combustor
body.
These flanges connect with the solid propellant
gas generator turbine spinner and the turbine
inlet.
The basic design parameters
for bipropellant
gas generators
are similar to those for thrust
chambers.
The total throat area of the turbine
nozzles
may be considered
to be the equivalent
throat area of the gas generator
combustion
chamber.
In calculating
combustion
chamber
characteristic
length L*, the volume between
injector and turbine nozzle throats is used, with
a correction
factor allowing for the specific
design configuration.
Because
of temperature
limitations
of the turbine construction
materials,
gas generators
are rarely operated
at gas temperatures higher than 1S00 F. In most designs no
cooling is provided for the combustion-chamber
wall and other surfaces
exposed to the hot
gases.

.4

DESIGN

OF

THRUST

CHAMBERS

AND

OTHER

COMBUSTION

135

DEVICES

PORT

PORT

IGNITER

(2)

TURBINE

COMB

Figure

UFIt'OR

4-51.-Liquid

The maximum available


energy per
gas generator
propellants
is obtained
products of combustion
are expanded
ically through a supersonic
nozzle to

pound of
when the
isentropambient

bipropellant

gas generator.

pressure.
This quantity of energy is termed the
available
energy content
AHt, and is expressed
by the correlations
in equations
(6-16), (6-17),
and (6-18).

DESIGN OF LIQUID

136

TABLE

4-2.--Operating

Typical

Characteristics

Liquid

System,

as

PROPELLANT

Bipropellant

Shown

in Fig.

o[ a

Gas

Total propellant flow rate ...............


O/F mixture ratio ......................
Oxidizer flow rate ......................
Fuel flow rate .........................

17.34 lb/see
0.342
4.42 lb/sec
12.92 lb/see

GG chamber pressure (injector end) .......


GG chamber temperature .................
Oxidizer-side
pressure drop of line, valve,
and in]eetor ..........................
Oxidizer side pressure drop across orifice.
GG oxidizer supply line takeoff pressure
(total at main oxidizer pump discharge)
..
Fuel side pressure drop of line, valve,
and injector .........................
Fuel side pressure drop across orifice ....
GG fuel supply line takeoff pressure (total
at main fuel pump discharge ............

612.1 psia
1200: F

With
are

these

bled

to the
ing

Gas

the

turbine,

fluid.

Tapoff

systems,

from

This

they

arrangement

for a separate

gas

utes

significantly

bility

potential

of the

to the

nique

has

successfully

Figure

simplicity

engine

4-52.-Schematic

same

American

Aviation's

appears

lower
sort

engines

requiring

a schematic

engine

the

work-

to thrust

throttling.

In a separate
produced

and

purposes

supply

placed

of the

chamber
drive
bine

its

relia-

The

tech-

4.7

fluid,

construction

drawing
only,
the
ature

(usually

and

repeatably

ber

and

less

have

desired
than

design.
been

dynamic

properties

a liquid

bipropellant

been

gas

hydrogen

successfully

tapoff
throttled

or better.

initiationof the release of the chemical

by a number

of methods

from which

bleed

gases

to possess

pends on the chosen


of

chamthus

bipropellants or monopropellants

are used, on

chambers,

the heat

amount of propellants entering, and on a number


of other considerations which will be discussed.
All ignition methods,

of
the

de-

release per unit time required in relation to the

reliably

products

utilizing

but for

type of propellants, whether

the size of the combustion

thermo-

to the

generator

Note

The

selection of the preferred ignition method

temper-

be

and gas generators.

propellant-tank pressurization as well.

zones

thrust

have been in use for

have been used not only for turbine power

tur-

location

inlet

ignition

(3) Catalysts
All of these methods

that in liquid propellant rocketry, gas generators

suc-

boundary
and

(I) Igniters

both thrust chambers

by with-

for a given

comparable

the

main

1700 F) can
The

gas

the

high

of the

turbine

found

as

regulating

DEVICES

(2) Hypergolic

turbine

that

shaping

produced,

injector

the

It has

from

gas

require

the engine designer will select the most suitable

are

system,

limitation

proper
any

gases

of the
as

however,

gases

through

such

inlet,

been

of 10:1

IGNITION

accomplished

shows

of relatively

gases

materials.

bleedports,

withdrawn

benefit

of the

demonstrated,
chamber

and

4-52

system,

be suitable

in view

and

for turbine-power

hot

not

ratios

device,

of a hot

turbine

have

will

energy stored in liquid rocket propellants is

for hydrogen

In a tapoff

extremely

would

cessfully

the

aid

pressure.

system

for a particular system:

generator

with

starting

at the

systems

chamber

engine

need

Division

Figure

pressures.

of simple

thrust

a tapoff
at an inlet

contrib-

system.

"tailormade"

only,

liquid
bulk

gas

the

chamber

by North

promising

of a tapoff

than
a tapoff

With the

gases

and

R, ocketdyne

o[ thrust

system.

However,

ducted

developed

to be particularly

diagram
tapoH

to operate

Furthermore,

valve

\,

propellants.

The
been

be designed

and

system.

must

pressure

the

primary

turbine

product

and

_OT C,AS
r_c'r

gas

907 psi

system

'-,-._,_

216 psi
80 psi

eliminates

generator

/-

846 psia

as

;
i

spinner.

used

T_RUST
_ $

EX.,us'r
DUCT
---._ ___----

114 psi
121 psi

chamber

are

i
I

TURBINE __

Systems

thrust

where

i
i

oxygen

some

combustion

main

4-51
Liquid
RP-1

Chamber

OXIDIZER F'U_ P_

Generator

Oxidizer ..............................
Fuel ..................................

Thrust

ROCKET ENGINES

bipropellant systems,
quirement in common:

particularly those for

have one overriding reminimum

ignition delay.

137

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

If the

propellants

ber

are

not

can

form

The

assurance

on the

entering

promptly

and

detonate

with

of the

of design,

combustion

damaging

ignition

difficult.

mixtures

It is one

of solid

results.

ignition

and on

cham-

explosive

of faultless

selection

quality

the

ignited,

on

of the

propellants

briefly

for checkout

that

inherent
they

and

shortcomings

cannot

then

be switched

stopped

again.

is dependent

method,

adequate

the

heat

release.

Igniters
These

are

defined

as

and

thus

initiate

the

heat

propellants

which

Igniters

derive

source

or from

as

solid

ignition,

the

combustion

igniter

their

power

a limited

Pyrotechnic

main
itself.

an outside

amount

of energy

stored

themselves.

do not

Follow-

participate

Some

discussed

further

of the

in

principal

below.

Igniters

These

are

somewhat

literally

slow-burning

modified

Burning

from

process.
are

release

of the
sustains

within

igniters

types

which

reaction

subsequently

propellants

ing

devices

time

for rocket

is in the

For

thrust

chamber

the

injector

face

end

of a wooden

range

use

fire

engine
of a few

they

can

or inserted

seconds.

be mounted

from

or plastic

crackers,

application.

below

stick

(fig.

to

at the
4-2).

For

better
heat distribution,
multiple
units
firing in
different
directions,
have been used,
as a rule
radially

outward

jector

face.

mounted

from

In other

the

to pinwheels,

through

rapid

center

across

designs

they

achieving

their

heat

size

release

distribution

walls.

Under

a tendency

complete

duds,
thrust

recesses
and

igniters

as

4-54.)

cally
variety
wires

chambers

triggered

to the

convenience.
integrity

squibs,

of types

in use.

pyrotechnic
Furthermore,

and

readiness

have

delays,

popping.

have

igniters

they

ignition

for gas

screw-in-type
The

ejection
to the
chamber

conditions,
to cause

or explosive

engines,

Also,

can cause
damage
tubes
of modern

cryogenic

exhibited

used,
they
To achieve

large

impractical.

inert parts
thin-walled

Pyrotechnic

are

for modern

becomes

of their
delicate

small

in-

been

rotation.

Although
pyrotechnic
igniters
should
be considered
obsolescent
adequate

the

have

generators

been
plugs.

are
The

(See

initiated

of which

in
figs.

4-53

by electri-

there

need

igniters

and

mounted

are

to connect
is

checkout
of pyrotechnic

another

in-

of the
igniters

Figure
is

4-53.-Radially
igniter

[or center

outward
ot injector

tiring

pyrotechnic

mounting.

138

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Main chamber:
centrally
mounted
unit;
propellant
weight,
33 gms; 4.5 sec
burning time; heat release,
45 Btu/sec;
perchlorate-type
fuel. Electrically
initiated.
(Later models of this engine used
hypergolic
slugs.)
Gas generator:
Pyrotechnic:
propellant
weight, 2 gins; 8 sec burning time; heat
release,
1.6 Btu/sec;
perchlorate-type
fuel.
Vernier engines
Similar to gas

(earlier models
generator units.

only):

It is vital that certain of the specifications


fall within a stated band.
For instance,
it can
be specified
that in a family of samples no
igniter will fire at currents
below 1 amp, and
that all must fire below 4 amp. The first condition concerns
the avoidance
of accidental
firing
due to stray currents introduced
by extraneous
RF signals or other sources;
the latter is simply
a reliability
requirement.
Similarly,
minimum
and maximum burning times, i.e., tolerances
of
the nominal times, will be dictated by startsequence
conditions.
In operational
designs,
the pyrotechnic
igniters frequently
do not ignite the main propellants
directly,
but ignite a pilot flame fed by a small
portion of the main fuel. The pilot flame then
ignites the main propellants.

Hypergolic

Figure

4-54.-Gas

generator
igniter
[usible link.

with built-in

Assurance
of their reliability,
therefore,
is by
statistical
and sampling methods.
For operational application,
additional
safety margins are
secured by redundancy.
However, this tends to
increase
bulkiness
further.
Also, pyrotechnic
igniters are unsuitable
for repeated
starts.
Engine manufacturers
have been procuring
pyrotechnic
igniters
from sources
specializing
in
this field.
Typical examples
of selected
parameters are as follows:
For a 150000-pound

thrust,

LOX/RP-1

engine:

Igniters

The term "hypergolic"


was coined by the
German chemist Noeggerath
about 1942 and is
composed of elements of the Greek words for
"high energy liquid."
The term now denotes a
bipropellant
combination
which ignites spontaneously when the two components
meet. Such a
system was used as an ignition source for the
earlier German A-4 engine (later called V-2
engine),
utilizing
hydrazine-hydrate
(N2H4- H20)
and 80 percent hydrogen peroxide
(H202).
Thin
tubes supported
by a wooden stick were inserted
into the thrust chamber from below.
Upon an
"ignition"
signal, a ground-mounted
supply unit,
including remotely operated
valves,
fed the two
components
to near the injector
elements
where
they burned with a spontaneously
igniting hot
flame.
This method may also have been used
temporarily
on other systems.
However, its
clumsiness,
the frequent clogging of feed lines,

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

and the need to eject a considerable


amount of
inert solid material made it undesirable.
Mso,
adaptation
to repeated
starts would be complex
and would require vehicle mounting,
thus adding
inert flight weight.

HypergoUc

Slugs

A more elegant way of using the hypergolic


effect for main-propellant
ignition is through use
of a hypergolic
slug.
In this design a small
amount of fluid is used which is hypergolic
with
one of the main propellants
but not with the
other.
The fluid is stored in a cylindrical
cartridge which has burst diaphragms
at either end.
The cartridge,
in turn, is loaded into a housing
which is part of a bypass line paralleling
a highpressure
main propellant
feed line (fig. 4-55). If
a fluid is chosen which is hypergolic
with the
oxidizer but neutral to the fuel, it is installed
in
the fuel system, and vice versa.
The former
type is the more common one. Here a fuel bypass line feeds an injection
element in the center of the injector,
or a set of elements
evenly
distributed
over the injector face.
When the
pumps start and outlet pressures
rise, the oxidizer valve is opened.
As pressures
rise further,
the burst diaphragms
in the hypergolic-fluid
container rupture and the fluid meets with the oxidizer in the chamber, igniting
spontaneously.
The fuel following the slug sustains
the ignition
flame.
The main fuel valve is then opened and
all parameters
reach main-stage
level.
Since the
igniter elements
carry fuel fed from the main
source following ignition,
they continue to participate
in the combustion,
undistinguished
from
the remainder of the main injector.
(See schematic, fig. 2-13.)

Figure

4-55.-Hypergol

slug cartridge

and housing,

130

Typical of fluid hypergolic


with oxygen is
triethyl aluminum.
For optimum behavior,
i.e.,
for minimum ignition delays and avoidance
of
undesirable
deposits
in fuel and sensing lines,
optimum mixtures
of the two have been successfully established
experimentally.
In a typical
application,
an amount of 6 cubic inches has
been found adequate,
although 9 cubic inches
are actually
used for maximum safety margin.
By
comparison,
a 1.5-million-pound
thrust engine
uses 35 cubic inches.
The hypergolic
slug
method, first explored
at the German Peenemtinde
installation,
is well developed
and has found
wide application.
Limited design and development work has been done more recently
toward
repeated-start
units, using a device resembling
an automobile
brake master cylinder with its
replenishing
features.
However, the hypergolic
slug is truly a single-start
device.
Because
of
relative
bulkiness,
the hypergolic
slug is not
recommended
for small units such as gas generators, where pyrotechnic
igniters
or spark plugs
are preferred.
Spark

Plugs

Spark plugs and their accessories


have been
developed
to high levels of efficiency
and reliability for liquid rocket engine use.
They are
eminently
suitable
for repeated
starts.
For
direct ignition,
however,
they are confined
to
relatively
small combustion
devices.
(See fig.
4-56.) In a typical 200000-pound
thrust engine,
the gas-generator
spark plugs fire at the rate of
50 sparks per second, releasing
approximately
1/10 joule per spark.
This corresponds
to 5
joules/sec
or 0.005 Btu/sec
per plug.
The
efficiency
of spark generation
from the electrical

Figure 4-56.-Spark
igniter assembly.
At right,
screw-in
spark plug; at le[t, cable connector.

140

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

storage device is approximately


20 percent.
The
overall efficiency
of the spark ignition
system is
approximately
10 percent.
Thus, 100 watts of
electrical
power is required.
If a 28-V source is
used, the nominal current is 4 amp when two
redundant
systems are used in parallel.
A Typical voltage at the spark plug is 15 000 V.

Augmented

Spark Igniters

The limitationof directspark ignitionto


small units has led to the design and development of augmented spark igniters(ASI). In this
design a spark plug,similarto the above, fires
into a small chamber about the size of a gas
generator. A small amount of the main propellants is fed intothischamber where they ignite,
The hot flame generated in turnignitesthe main
propellants,
Figure 4-57 shows the principles
of
an earlier augmented
spark igniter design.
Permanently located at the injector
end of the thrust
chamber, this igniter directs its products of combustion across the face of the main injector.
It
is film cooled by the tangential
injection
of fuel.
The oxidizer is injected
through two copper
tubes which impinge at the centerline
of the
igniter,
resulting
in a hot-core type of combustion,
The igniter is made of 4130 steel and has
a convergent,
throatless
nozzle.
This results
in
a wide dispersion
angle of gases emanating
from
the nozzle.
The igniter is capable of an unlimited number of starts,
since the spark plug is so
located that the combustion
does not seriously
affect its life.
The igniter has proven operable
over a wide range of mixture-ratio
and pressure
conditions.
It continues
to operate throughout

FUEL

I_ILET

SPARK

MDNITOR

TERmINALised.

_;P J, RK PLUG

Figure

4-57.-Augmented

spark

igniter.

ROCKET ENGINES

main stage, which prevents


any of the main
chamber gases from backing up into the igniter.
Approximately
one-half percent of the main propellant flow rates has been found adequate
for
the augmented
spark igniters.
Special

Designs

For the engine used in the Saturn S-I booster,


gas-generator
ignition by the solid-propellant
turbine spinner has been successfully
developed.
The turbine spinner will be discussed
in a later
chapter.

Hypergolic

Main Propellant

Ignition

In preceding
paragraphs
it was learned that
hypergolic
fluids are being used as ignition
sources
for main propellant
combinations
which
by themselves
are not hypergolic
(i.e,, "anergol"
propellants).
Hypergolic
liquid main propellants
have attracted
attention
since the early days of
modern rocketry.
Their use permits a substantial
simplification
of the engine system through elimination of the entireignitionsystem, leaving
entry timingthe only functionalrequirement.
This gain however, is not entirelywithoutpenalties. The practicalhypergolicpropellantcombinationshave a somewhat limitedspecificimpulse. Furthermore,some are highlycorrosive
and/or pose handlingand storageproblemswhich
the engine designerhas to consider.
A number of hypergolicmain propellantcombinationshave been in successful operational
use for many years.
During World War II, several
guided-missile
systems using hypergolic
propellants, were under development
in Germany.
Hydrazinc hydrate (N_H4 H20) and high-percentage
hydrogen peroxide
were used in certain Messerschmitt rocket fighters and the antiaircraft
missile Enzian.
Amines and nitric acid were used
forthe AA rocketSchmetterling.Optolinesand
nitricacid with sulfuricacid additives(approxiinatelyI0 percentwere appliedinthePeenemiinde
developments of the antiaircraft
rocketWasserfall
(17000-pound thrust)and the small 1300-pound
Taifun. "Optoline"was a generic term forvarious mixturesof aniline,hydrocarbons,and other
substances.
In the United States,severalpropulsionsystems utilizing
hypergolicpropellantshave been
developed.

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

To make available
to the high performing
but
anergol propellant
combinations
the simplicity
of
hypergolic
behavior,
the effectiveness
of small
amounts of additives
("sweeteners")
has been
successfully
demonstrated.

FUEL PUMP
(RP-II

Me-163 which used hydrogen


peroxide
with
potassium
permanganate
solution
as the catalyst.
Probably the most widely used application
of
this principle
during that period was for the turbine steam-generating
system of the German A-4
(later called V-2) ballistic
missile,
which employed 80 percent hydrogen peroxide with either
potassium
permanganate
or sodium permanganate
as catalysts.
Because of the need for relatively
elaborate
timing, valving,
and interlocking
devices,
the
use of liquid catalysts
was soon found to be
cumbersome
and undesirable.
Application
of
solid catalysts,
therefore,
as they were being
used for underwater
torpedoes,
led to design and
development
work toward use of these systems
for rocket application.
They never reached
maturity for the German World War II systems,
but were perfected
after the war by the British
and to a limited degree by the United States.
The Redstone
rocket steam plant, using solid
catalysts,
has consistently
and successfully
operated in many flights,
among them the first
U. S. manned rocket flight by Commander Shepard.
Another successful
development
are the AR airplane superperformance
rockets.
Analogous
to
certain British systems',
the AR systems decompose hydrogen peroxide
fed through a solid catalyst bed consisting
of impregnated
wire screens.
Since the specific
impulse of decomposed
hydrogen peroxide
alone is low (below 200, depending
on concentration
and design parameters),
RP fuel
is injected
below the decomposition
chamber.
Because
of the sufficiently
high temperature
of

TURBINE

GAS GENERATOR
(SOLID CATALYST}
GAS
GENERATOR
VALVE

Catalysts
In a general sense, catalysts
are not igniters
but initiators
and sustainers
of reactions,
which
themselves
remain unchanged
during these reactions.
In rocketry,
catalysts
have been used
predominantly
to initiate
and sustain the composition
of monopropellants
("Monergols"),
notably that of hydrogen peroxide.
Several operational or near-operational
systems
existed during
World War II, such as the earlier Messerschmitt

141

THRUST
CONTROL
VALVE

MAIN
FUEL
VALVE

FUEL
INJECTOR

SCREEN
PACK
(SOLID CATALYST)

Figure

MAIN
OXIDIZER
VALVE

THRUST

4-58.-Schematic
superperiormance

CHAMBER

of

a Rocketdyne
rocket engine.

AR-1

the decomposition
gases (1400 F), the RP
ignites and burns spontaneously
with the free
oxygen of the decomposed
H202.
(See fig. 4-58.)
In this manner, the solid catalyst
indirectly
serves as an ignition
system.
While the specific
impulse with RP afterburner
is still moderate
(approximately
245 seconds
for the AR), these
systems offer great versatility,
storability,
and
extreme simplicity,
including
throttling
to low
levels and restartability.
More recently, it has been successfully
demonstrated
that catalytic
operation
offers a simple
alternative
to augmented
spark ignition
for hydrogen systems.
In a process
patented
for Engelhard
Industries, Newark, N. J., a gaseous
mixture of oxygen
and hydrogen is fed through a catalyst
bed of
palladium-impregnated
alumina (A1203) pellets,
by which the mixture is ignited.
Installation
of
this igniter is similar to an augmented
spark
igniter.

Ignition

Detection

The reader

familiar

with the news

stories

about rocket launchings


over the past years is
well aware of the consequences
of rocket stages
failing to ignite:
loss of mission.
This is

142

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

equally true for liquid- and for solid-propellant


systems.
With the former, however, an additional
hazard exists in case of ignition
failure:
that of
accumulation
of explosive
propellant
mixtures
which can be accidentally
set off with catastrophic consequences.
This consideration
has
always been a concern with unmanned vehicles,
but has become even more important for manned
ones.

Recognition
of these potential
dangers has
prompted extensive
investigation
of means to
detect reliably
absence or presence
of ignition
in liquid propellant
rocket engines.
Only upon
an "ignition OK" signal should the engine-start
sequence
be permitted
to proceed.
This refers
mainly to the thrust chamber.
For gas generators, redundancy
appears
to be adequate
protection for most applications.
Desirable
detection systems must judge ignition both qualitatively
(absence
or presence)
and quantitatively
(adequate heat release).
Not all methods are equally
good in both respects.
In some form or another,
will have to provide means
A survey follows of several
operational
application.

Visual

the engine designer


for ignition detection.
which have found

ROCKET

ENGINES

problem increased
because
of the large amount
of oxidizer present in full flow ignitions
which
shrouds the ignition flame.
Thus, means had to
be found to detect ignition by other means.

Optical

Detection

Ground-mounted
optical devices
can be moved
up close to the chamber exit.
A number of types
have been investigated,
such as simple light or
infrared-sensitive
cells.
They were found, however, to be subject to the limitations
mentioned
for human observers.
It is possible
to mount the
optical devices
into the chamber wall facing
toward the inside near the injector face; however, the devices
used thus become vehicle
mounted and require interfaces
to ground-support
equipment.
Also, "windows"
in the chamber wall
represent
undesirable
surface discontinuities.
It
is unlikely, therefore,
that optical devices
will
find wide application
for ignition detection.

Pyrometers
Heat-sensitive
pyrometers
are closely
related
to the optical devices
and subject to the same
limitations.

Detection
Fusible Wire Links

For the German A-4 (V-2) and the early U. S.


Redstone
missiles,
visual observation
by the
test conductor
was used.
Man in this case was
the interlocking
device and would initiate the
next sequence
step only if, in his judgment,
ignition was adequate.
This simple procedure
was satisfactory
because
these early systems
employed a prestage,
during which the main propellants
were admitted under tank head only.
The resulting
relatively
low flow rates were then
increased
by starting
the turbopump upon a
"prestage
OK" signal.
With the increasing
size of modern rocket
engines,
visual observation
became unreliable.
The type of installation
of these systems
in
static firing stands and on launch tables made
direct observation
difficult.
Furthermore,
improved igniters,
developed
to keep the ignition
flame concentrated
where it should be, i.e., at
the injector face, resulted
in little or no visible
fire emerging at the chamber exit.
With the disappearance
of the prestage
step, the visual

For many applications


these are simple and
reliable
devices.
A wire is strung across the
chamber exit which, when fused by the ignition
flame, interrupts
a circuit and signals
"ignition
OK." Through proper selection
of wire gage,
material and distance
from the chamber exit
and/or center, some quantitative
judgment is
obtained.
The wire can be ground mounted or
chamber mounted.
It must be isolated
and should
have spring loading,
like
fuses, to assure positive

the well-known
separation.

electric

Wire links have a number of shortcomings.


The fused wire ends may touch other metal parts
and thus reconnect
the circuit before the relay
drops out. Suitab)e circuitry
and mounting must
therefore
be applied.
If a pyrotechnic
igniter is
used, the wire can be broken by inert particles,
or even by a dud igniter coming out of the chamber, giving an incorrect
"ignition OK" signal.
This has been overcome by providing redundancy
using several wires in parallel,
all of which

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

must be broken before the sequence


can proceed.
In another design the wire has been mounted as
a loop placed in a groove on a wooden or plastic
stick.
It is thus supported
against all reasonably expected mechanical
damage and adequate
insulation
is maintained
after fusion.

Pressure-Sensing
Because

Devices

of the need to mount the fusible

higher pressures
during subsequent
main stage.
Pressure-sensing
devices
have potential
for
multistart
engines.

Wires

Another method designed


to overcome the
shortcomings
of fusible wire links is the application of resistance
wires.
Constructed like a
glow plug and connected
to a bridge circuit,
the
resistance
wire will signal by a distinctly
different resistance
in the presence
or absence
of
ignition.
The art is to find that spot in the
thrust chamber or gas generator
which experiences a clear temperature
rise as a function of
ignition,
yet remains cool enough to prevent
fusion of the wire. Resistance-wire
sensors
are
ideally

Indirect

suited

for repeatable

senses pressure
buildup in the igniter injection
line upon rupture of the hypergolic
fluid cartridge
burst diaphragms.
The switch signal then initiates the next sequential
step.
A modification
of
the system substitutes
a pressure-actuated
valve
for the switch with similar effects.
This method
does not assure,
however, that the cartridge
is
properly filled with the right amount of the correct fluid.

wires at the exit of the thrust chamber, they are


subject
to some of the limitations
noted for visual and optical methods.
It has been attempted,
therefore,
to sense the pressure
rise in the combustion chamber resulting
from the burning igniter
flame.
However, since the pressure
rise is small
(a few psi at best), reliable
discrimination
is
difficult.
Furthermore,
the sensing-pressure
switches
must be able to withstand
the much

Resistance

143

start

engines.

Methods

In conjunction
with hypergolic
slug ignition,
other approaches
to ignition sensing
have been
developed.
In one design an electric
contact
assures
that a cartridge
is actually installed.
This does not assure,
however,
that the cartridge
is loaded or completely
loaded, nor that the
downstream
lines are not clogged or that the
diaphragms
will burst.
Weighing of the cartridge
and purging of all lines must be included
in the
firing preparation.
In another arrangement
a pressure
switch

Spark igniters
use electric
devices
which
ascertain
that the plug is sparking based on
conductivity
effects due to ionization
near the
electrodes.
The methods in the above list, which undoubtedly
is not complete,
are described
as indirect because none of them directly
and reliably
detects
ignition;
i.e., the release
of adequate
heat.
This is a drawback and cannot entirely
be
offset by weighing,
certifying,
and inspecting.

4.8

COMBUSTION

INSTABILITY

"Combustion
instability"
is defined in terms
of amplitude
of pressure
fluctuations
in the combustion chamber.
Chamber-pressure
fluctuations
are always present during normal, stable operation of a rocket engine system.
These fluctuations are generally
quite random, showing frequency spectra which are essentially
continuous
in nature, with few, if any, recognizable
peaks.
However, in case of instability,
large concentrations of vibratory energy appear at one or more
frequencies
in the spectrum.
They can easily be
recognized
against
the normal random-noise
backgmund.
It has been found experimentally
that the
amplitude
of the chamber pressure
oscillations
which will cause detrimental
physical
or operational effects varies widely for different
thrust
chambers
and engine systems.
Also, in a given
chamber or system the effects of various types
of instability
can be quite different
at the same
amplitude. Thus itis difficult
to assign a quantitative
value to the amplitudeat which the combustionchamber should be considered as running
unstable.
Itis an interestingobservation thatthe first
large liquid-propellant
rocket-propulsionsystem,
the German A-4 (V-2)rocket,never experienced
combustion instability
in over 4000 launchings
and in severaltimes as many staticchamber and

DESIGN

144

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

engine firings.
The term "combustion
inst.ability" was literally
unknown.
It has been suggested that the Germans may have had instability, but did not know it because
of their poor
high-speed
recorders.
To this it can be said
that for those instabilities
which have caused
today's
real difficulties,
the high-speed
recorder
chart is merely a postmortem
confirmation
of the
cause of often very costly failures,
which did
not require any special instrumentation
but'were
unmistakable
even to the untrained visual observer.
It is much more likely that there is a
relationship
between the low performance
level
of the A-4 or the chamber geometry, or both, and
the inherent stability.
Experimentally
it has been found that as long
as the ratio of the peak-to-peak
amplitude
of
pressure
oscillation
to average chamber pressure
is kept below 0.10, there is usually no physical
damage to the chamber.
However, while a 10percent variation
in pressure
for any class of
instability
may not appear to have detrimental
physical
effects instantly
or within a short
period, it would be unacceptable
for longer range
rocket vehicle missions.
One practical
way to
detect combustion
instability
and to prevent it
from causing damage during engine operation
is
by monitoring
the vibratory acceleration
of the
system.
Accelerometers
are mounted on the
system to monitor in all three coordinates.
They
are connected
to discriminator
circuits
which are
set to specific
g-load limits.
When these limits
are exceeded,
a counting instrument
begins to
record.
As soon as an allowable
cumulative
number of oscillations
is exceeded,
an engine
cutoff signal is automatically
triggered
to prevent damage.

Types

of Instability

For proper remedial action, it will often be


important to know whether the observed
oscillations are of a longitudinal,
radial, or tangential
mode, or a combination
of these.
These three
modes and their normal acoustic
frequency
are
indicated
in figure 4-59. Furthermore,
in certain
cases,
it will be extremely
valuable
to know
whether the oscillations
originated
in the thrust
chamber, or in the feed system, or whether they
originate in an interaction
of characteristics,
harmless
when separate
but destructive
when

_d

ROCKET

ENGINES

Lc

LONGITUDINAL

MODE

TANGENTIAL

MODE

Ac

N'E'g c

N=

0.59A c
dC

RADIAL

M__
L22A c
N=- dc

Figure 4-59.-Three
modes
o[ instability.
Lc =
combustion
chamber
length
(injector
[ace to
throat);
dc = combustion
chamber
d i a m e t e r;
N = normal acoustic
[requency;
Ac = velocity
o[
sound in chamber.
combined,
of both feed system and chamber.
This will be further discussed
in connection
with methods to improve stability.
The effects of the oscillations
on an engine
system are very much dependent
on frequency.
These effects may range from simple shaking
(usuaLly at the lower frequencies),
possibly
resulting in an eventual
mechanical
failure after
sometimes prolonged
exposure,
to "acoustic"
vibrations
(usually
at the higher frequencies)
capable of destroying
the entire system in a few
hundred milliseconds.
But, how low is "low _
and how high is "high"?
As pointed out earlier,
the general field of combustion
stability
is extremely complex and it would be far beyond the
scope of this book to attempt to present a generalized
theory of the subject.
Each system,
because
of configuration
and dimensions,
behaves somewhat differently
and requires
special
treatment.
The thrust chamber designer must
have a basic understanding
of the stability
problem, and it is felt that this can best be conveyed
by describing
it in terms of a typical system, for
which a substantial
amount of experimental
data
exists.
The frequency
of the chamber pressure
oscillations in a given chamber is determined
by the
geometry of the system as well as by complex
interactions
between the fluid flow in the propellant lines, the physical
and chemical process

i
DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERSAND OTHER COMBUSTIONDEVICES

Figure

4-60.-Approximate
tics at 150000

vibration
characterislb thrust level.

of combustion,
and the dynamics
of the combustion gases in the chamber.
It has been found
that each of the frequency
components
in the
instability
spectrum of a thrust chamber is predominantly
influenced
by only one physical
process
so that it is possible
to group the observed instabilities
in broad general classes,
which are: high frequency
or gas dynamics,
low
frequency
or hydrodynamics,
and intermediate
frequency
or combustion
dynamics,
listed in the
order of their relative
importance.
Figure 4-60
presents
vibration
amplitudes
of various frequencies
versus mixture ratio of a typical L02/
RP-1 engine at the 150000-pound
thrust level.
The graph indicates
the large difference
in vibration amplitude
between a stable and an unstable
7egion.

_ligh-Frequency

Instabilities

High-frequency
instabilities
at frequencies
of
approximately
1000 cps and over are sometimes
referred to as "damaging
acoustic,"
or "screaming" modes of instability.
They are gas-dynamic
instabilities
which are both sustained
and initiated by the combustion
process
and are believed
to be concentrated
in the uppermost
portion of
the combustion
chamber where they cause increased
heat-transfer
rates to the injector
sufficient to melt and burn it through within a few
hundred milliseconds.
They also frequently
have
serious damaging effects upon other parts of the
rocket engine system.
High-frequency
instabilities are further characterized
by instantaneous
initiation
(a few milliseconds
from absence
to
full amplitude),
and by extreme difficulty
in

145

eliminating
them once they are initiated.
They
do not occur at, nor can they be generally
damped
to, low-amplitude
levels.
They are either present at high amplitudes
or not at all. It is believed that these oscillations
are predominantly
of the radial and tangential
types.
In many systems extremely
unpredictable
high-frequency
instability
has occurred.
It is
often, but by no means always,
connected
with
the buildup phase to main stage.
Systems which
ran stably during numerous
successive
tests can
become unstable
without warning or subsequent
clear indication
of a cause.
Figure 4-61 shows
the starting
of a typical high-frequency
instability, indicated
by the sudden shift in the accelerometer trace due to high-amplitude
chamber pressure oscillations.
All types of rocket propulsion
systems,
including
solid systems,
have been
plagued by high-frequency
instability.
A considerable amount of research
and engineering
has
been devoted to the explanation
and elimination
of this phenomenon.
Unless a run in which instability
is encountered is terminated
within fractions
of a second,
serious
damage to the engine hardware almost
always occurs.
It is assumed
that the rapid gas
pulsations
directly
interface
with propellant
injection,
their mixing, and with the combustion
process,
upsetting
the condition
in the boundary
zones, in particular
at the injector
face, to such
an extent that the heat transfer
to the metal parts
increases
at a high rate. Within seconds,
or
even fractions
thereof, the injector can burn
through, permitting
propellant
mixing behind the
injector
face.
This, in turn, leads to explosions
which often completely
destroy the system.
It has been observed
that the degree and
speed of damage is somewhat related to the
level of energy release
occurring
in the combustion chamber.
This may explain why "bursts of
I
i

HIGH-FREQUENCY

J"-- ,NSTABILITY-T _ I _y, :


!I

ENG!N,E,ArCCELEROMETERI
I
,

)I

Figure 4-61.-High
#equency combustion insmbil'ity shown on oscillograph
for engine accelerometer.

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

146

instability"
frequently
stage.

ROCKET ENGINES

during shutdown cause damage less


than they do during buildup and main
tRtSSaRt

Low-Frequency

- --'--

" --

--

"

Instabilities

This type of instability,


at frequencies
below
approximately
180 cps, is a hydrodynamic
oscillation, characterized
by a cause-and-effect-type
coupling between combustion
process
and propellant feed system flow processes.
The phenomenon is sometimes
referred to as "chugging."
Its secondary
effects can be serious
indeed.
"Chugging"
may trigger destructive
high-frequency
instability.
Also, prolonged chugging
can lead
to loosening
of bolts and other vital connections
and to ruptures in general.
Low-frequency
instability
is self-sustaining
but may damp out.
As a rule, it is predictable
from analytical
and
from test result studies.
In figure 4-62 the highspeed-pressure
instrumentation
measurements
indicating
chugging clearly show that the oscillations of propellant
feed system pressures
are
at the same frequency
as the "rough combustion
cutoff accelerometer"
reading.
Chugging occurs most frequently
during
buildup and shutdown of an engine system, or
when operating at off-rated
operating levels,
such as at incorrect
mixture-ratio
values.
Likewise, too high, and particularly,
too low a thrust
level can lead to chugging.
This is especially
important for systems
requiring throttling
to a
lower-than-rated
thrust level during flight.
If
sustained,
chugging
will cause measurable
performance losses,
which are attributable
to widely
fluctuating
mixture ratios.
The chugging phenomenon
is frequently
associated with the quality and promptness
of ignition of the entering propellants.
This can be
described
as "flame holding characteristics,"
"combustion
timelags,"
"flame propagation
velocity,"
or other terms, which ultimately
are
all traceable
to the excessive
accumulation
of
unburned fuel, with subsequent
detonation
or
cyclic higher-than-rated
combustion.
The resulting excessive
chamber-pressure
spikes effect
a reduction,
or even reversal,
of the propellant
flows.
This will cause rapid collapse
of the
chamber pressure,
allowing propellants
to rush
in again, thus repeating
the cycle.
It is readily
evident that the physical
dimensions
of the corn-

_o_

P_[ss_[

II_ _'_1"

l_q1_1tl_lllT_l_[IZXl"l_l_11111_111_11'l_ll_11

_tssun[

Figure

4-62.-High-speed
of low-frequency

bustion chamber
the magnitude
of
their ratio to one
tem), are critical
frequency
system

pressure
measurements
instability.

and of the propellant


ducts, and
the propellant
flow rates and
another (in a bipropellant
systo the phenomenon
of lowoscillations.

Intermediate-Frequency

Instabilities

This instability,
with frequencies
ranging
from 200 to 1000 cps, is sometimes
referred to
as combustion
dynamics or "buzzing."
It is
characterized
by a spring-and-mass-type
coupling
between combustion
process
and propellant
feed
system flow processes.
It is often present in
only a portion of the feed system, or is confined
to the combustion
chamber, or, in a bipropellant
system, to one of the two propellant
systems
only. It appears to be initiated
by the combustion process
and to be sustained
by acoustic
resonance
of a critical
portion of the system.
Some researchers
have shown that in a system
having a pump, the pump may be the prime source
of these oscillations.
This type of instability
has not appeared
to
be a problem in the development
of large engines.
While it can occur occasionally
in large engines,
it appears to be much more prevalent
in smallscale low-thrust
systems.
Systems oscillations
of the buzzing type are undesirable
because
of
their adverse effects on engine reliability
and

DESIGN OF THRUST CHAMBERS AND OTHER COMBUSTION DEVICES

147

rl

!;I

I:!'p

....... i iI:,

"q %==

i:,r,'?

!!ii,

:!211 "
ii!ii:!
i_
tll

,\

"

\,

\
Ioo

Tiiii!

\
............
\,
\" \/ .................

e._

I!
CMA_aR

Figure
Figure

4-63.-High-speed

pressure

o[ intermediate

\'\

lrequency

4-64.-Field
region

measurements

_ESSU_E

olstability
of a typical

and

sale

engine

operaling

system.

instability.
bility in liquid propellant rocket engine systems

performance.

When

exposed

to prolonged buzz-

ing, critical parts of the engine may

fail be-

cause of material fatigue, and thus cause

sec-

can be attacked in several ways,

and operating conditions, and through the use of

ondary major failures. In addition, measurements

special control devices.

have

toward eliminating combustion

shown

that a performance

approximately

(Is) loss of up to

7 percent can be incurred, which

is largely attributed to widely fluctuating mixture


ratios.
Figure 4-63 is the record of high-speed-pressure

employed.

cycle
fied

pump

outlet pressure, and nonexistent in the

zation

pump

inlet pressure.

with

buzzing

is limited to only a part of the feed

system.

Field

and/or
to the

For a given engine system, combustion


ity limits can be defined experimentally
of certain operational parameters
ber pressure, injection AP,

stabil-

in terms

modify

spray

formation,

such as cham-

the

and mixture ratio.

most
The

typical LO2/RP-I,

mechanical

The

150000-pound

nominal thrust

stability field, together

tional

in the

disturbance,

of instabilare

used

controlling

kinetics,

etc.

full-scale
chambers,

engines
and
have shown

yields

to the

atomi-

characteristics

least
is

Experi-

relative

by a factor

approach

typi-

different

properties

modification

or other

is

injector

additives

with
thrust

differing

damping

approach

to initiation

physical

per

cycle

in which
to give

chemical

stable

energy
per

distribution

both
model

second

tional

varied

propellant
the

injector

ity ratings,

driving,

damping

This

resistance

which

Figure 4-64 presents the stability field for a


engine system.

are

or in which

that

instability are

the

the

propellant

varying

ity,

basic approaches

investigations

configurations
and

below
system.

by design

mental
studies,
with research

of Stability

to limit

to a value

inherent

Two

The first is to eliminate triggering

processes

measurements
of a typical test afflicted by buzzing. The oscillation is attenuated in the fuel
This indicates that the

including sys-

tems design, choice of propellant combination,

from

stable

stabil-

5 to 6 from

configuration.

to introduce

system
devices

addi-

through

the

so that

or oscillation

use

any

triggered

by

with heat transfer limits, can serve as a guide to

the

the design of a safely operating engine system.

damped
out.
Experience
over the past
several
years
has shown
that the destructive
transverse

Design

Approaches

Toward

Control

of Combustion

disturbance,

acoustic
tively

Instability

modes
combated

approach.
The

problem

of controlling

combustion

insta-

or a divergent

are

sufficiently

of instability
through

Mechanical
wall

the
devices,

gap,

have

and

can
use

rapidly

be most
of this
such

been

of

opera-

as
found

effec-

second
baffles
to

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

148

introduce
sufficient
damping into the system so
that it will recover from an instability
triggered
by an explosive
charge as large as can be used
without damaging the thrust chamber in some
other manner.
This ability of a system to recover from a triggered
instability
has been designated as "dynamic
stability."
A prerequisite
for any propulsion
system to operate reliably is
that it should exhibit dynamic stability
with
respect to all modes of instability.
As a minimum requirement
it should be "dynamically
stable"
at least with respect to the destructive
transverse
(radial and tangential)
acoustic
modes.
The successful
application
of the above
methods has been based primarily on criteria
established
empirically
in research
model thrust
chambers,
together with testing in actual engine
systems.
However, the understanding
of the
fundamental
physical
principles
of the damping
processes
is still limited.

Prevention

of Triggering

Processes

The most desirable


design method of controlling instability
is the prevention
of those
physical
or chemical
processes
which trigger
and/or sustain the resonant
modes of the combustion chamber or engine system.
While a great
number of studies,
in which different design
parameters
were varied systematically,
have
been made by various investigators,
the results
have failed to yield truly generalized
design
criteria.
This can be traced to the fact that
basic processes
which trigger and sustain the
various types of instability
have not been isolated.
Thus, while a parameter
which controls
one type of instability
may have been established on an engineering
basis, this same design
criterion
may be enhancing
another type of instability.
The following is a general discussion
of
"the prevention
of triggering
instability
in various
component and subsystem
designs:
1. Propellant
feed system design.-Past
experience
has indicated
that certain combustion
instabilities,
such as buzzing, are sustained
through an interaction
between feed system and
combustion
dynamics.
It is believed that hydraulic resonances
are a major factor in sustaining this type of instability.
The requirement
is
to design a feed system whose hydraulic
charac-

teristics
will not trigger the interact._on
with the
combustion
process.
2. Combustion
chamber design.-Analytical
studies and experimental
results
have indicated
that the geometrical
configuration
of the combustion chamber will determine
the type of frequency
of the acoustic
modes of instability.
Chambers
having large length-to-diameter
ratios appear to
be quite prone to large-ampiitude
longitudinal
instability.
On the other hand, chambers
having
small length-to-diameter
ratios appear to be
sensitive
to the transverse
modes.
Also, smalldiameter chambers
are much more stable than
large-diameter
chambers.
The requirement
is to
design a chamber geometry which will have least
tendency
to trigger instability,
in conjunction
with other considerations.
3. Injector design.-The
injector design appears to be a most critical factor in triggering
instability.
In turn, it offers great potential
for
controlling
instability-triggering
processes
through variation
of parameters.
Of the most
common types of injectors,
the self-impinging
injector (fig. 4-45a) has been chosen by many
investigators
as the best compromise
between
performance
and stability.
There is some indication that longitudinal
instability
may be enhanced if the propellant
travel time from the
injector face to the point of impingement
is close
to the half-period
(or an odd multiple of the halfperiod) of the longitudinal
mode oscillations.
There are strong indications
that increasing
the
injection
.AP to too great a value may cause the
thrust chamber to operate unstably in the transverse acoustic
modes.
The effect of injection
,AP on the longitudinal
acoustic
modes and on
hydrodynamic
instabilities
appears to be just the
opposite,
with stability
improving as AP increases.
The propellant
distribution
across the
injector face has a significant
relation to triggering transverse
modes of instability.
4. Propellant
combination
and mixture ratio.Control tests with various propellants
have
shown that there are certain oxidizers
or fuels
which can be triggered
into instability
more
easily than others, in general or at certain mixture ratio conditions.
In LO2/LH2
systems,
a
lower hydrogen injection
temperature
tends to
trigger instability.
5. Engine system operating characteristics.In some cases,
combustion
instability
can be

DESIGN

avoided
ating
ber

by modification

pressure

velop.
can

period

the

destructive

with

through

the
the

can

other

propellant

injector

ports.

be eliminated

pressure

start

This
thrust

in turn,
modes

by driving

through

a fast

has

baffles
injector

chug-

chamber

buildup.

been

and

as

means
from

baffles

is a function

should

combustion-flame

Application

of Damping

support

Devices

3.
In further
special

damping

"dynamic
and

support

of design

devices

stability"

engine

devices

which

can

in the

system.
have

for stability,

The

following

been

applied

for

portion

of the

to the

combustion

several

figure

4-66,

good

bustion

results:

bilities.

!.

Feed

sustained
ties

system
combustion

of the

type

hydraulic

A hydraulic

will

increase

the
in the

shows

the

schematic
It is

the

transmission
the

system

type

is

and

system.

zero

capacitance
the

and

system.
energy

attenuating

the

between
through

capacitor,

of the

by

frequencies

damping

Acoustic

in

of the

com-

triggered
that

instaby

filler

filling

block,

could

be drasticallyimproved

exact

shape

of the

contour

evaluations

the

most

chamber

resonant

pressing

liners

has

demonstrated

been

sion

has

to absorb

adjacent

shown

capability

experimental

of using

cations.

between

is

system

resonant

which

resistance

function

it

the

Another

area

determined

to determine

4.

with

to isolate

found

annular

as

from

to

are

effective

design

configuration.

hydraulic

frequency.

high

Its

oscillatory

is

was

an

a contoured

The

and

required

at a

capacitor

cases.

is critical,

4-65

disturbances

a given

absorption

it and

sys-

with

stability"

in most

which

Figure

resistance

function

of pressure
above

small

device

of an experimental

Its

called

is any

feed

further

gap"

gap.-It

wall,

the

face.

conducted
effort.

injection

to recover

It was

be

blank

chamber

improved

"wall

"dynamic

by

in the

an isolation-type

system.

instabil-

compressibility

liquid

capacitance

and

system

this

be eliminated

capacitors

effective

point

large

feed

can

capacitor

given

capacitor.

capacitor.-Self-

and

buzzing

introducing
tem.

hydraulic

wall

leaving

propellant

chamber

injector

development

divergent
that

chamber
are

with

Chamber

the

of the

of the

should

and

the

or height

distance

from

to the

Adequate

to keep

depth

of the

design

secured

4-40.

provided

The

front

experimentally

be provided

combustion

be

evaluations

the

operating
These

to be

in figure

burnout.

Experimental

models,

designed

baffles

full-scale

combinations.

shown

cooling

trans-

instability.

in both

small-scale

usually

face

of suppressing

of combustion

propellant

are

149

demonstrated

chamber

sys-

method
modes

various

of

DEVICES

effective

acoustic

with

it back

triggering

COMBUSTION

most

verse

to de-

proPellant

The

the

cham-

time

acoustic
one

OTHER

engine

have

instability,

by contaminating

AND

operif the

during
may

low-frequency

trigger

ging

instance,

"chugging"

instability
tem

For

buildup

This

CHAMBERS

of engine-system

characteristics.

is excessive,

OF THRUST

on the

In this

is

similar

tile

to reduce

the

energy

its

amplitude.

the

arrangement.

or

pressor

liners.-The

and

chamber

wails

the

4-67

must

of acoustic

in a room,
mode
shows

combined

appli-

of suppres-

of patches
level

from

Figure

engine

principle

use

sound

absorbed

openings

sup-

combination

the

to the

The

acoustic

in turbojet

case

the

feasibility

nonresonant

whereby
reduce

a typical

area

be of the

will
of

order

the

sup-

of from

of the

system.
2.

Combustion-chamber

baffles.-The

use

of
_/_INJECTOR

combustion-chamber

baffles

:/"

"'

- -'-'_'- --_

"

i.:-:.u-_--_-

has

been

found

CO_PAESS_a

FACE

to be

GAS

_--_--.....

::::
:1.

---

..

NYDRAUL_

_k__CONTOURE

SYIT_Jt

WALL GAP
FILLER BLOCK
Figure

4-65.-Schematic
type

hydraulic

of experimental

isolation

Figure

4-66.-Combustion

capacitor.

chamber
gap.

--

_.._..

divergent

wall

150

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

B_JRST
j

COMTROL

OtAPHRAGi

r EXPLOSIVE

e/" VALVE

INJECTOR FACE
i,

suPPLY

CHARGE

I_l

DIRECTED
PULSE

Figure

EXPLOSIVE

(b}

NON

DIRECTED

EXPLOSIVE

Ic)

DIRECTED

PULSE

4-68.-Combustion
chamber
methods.

C_5

NOI

EXPLOSIVE

FLOW

perturbation

Combustion Chamber Disturbances


Figure

4-67.-Combustion

chamber

acoustic

liner.

The introductionof disturbancein the cham-

to 4 percent of the total chamber wall surface


area.
Furthermore,
the suppressor
thickness
should be maximum in the area of maximum pressure variation;
i.e., near the injector face.

ber proper offersa simplermethod of inducing


instability.Transverse acousticmodes have
been initiated
most successfullyby the following
methods:

Rating

1. Directed explosive
pulses.-The
directed
explosive
pulse method of inducing instability,
as shown in figure 4-68a, uses a high explosive
charge mounted in an external fixture which is
attached
to the combustion
chamber in such a

Stability

It is desireable
to establish
the combustion
stability
level of a particular
engine system
without an excessive
number of tests.
This can
be accomplished
by perturbing
a normally stable
system by suitable
means until instability
is
initiated.
The relative
stability
of various systems is then judged as a function of the magnitude of perturbation
needed to reduce the instability.
The larger the perturbation,
the more
stable the system.
The perturbation
can be
introduced
in either the propellant
feed system
or in the combustion
chamber.
Several effective
methods exist for inducing
different types of
instability.
Feed

System

Perturbations

Perturbation
in the propellant
feed system to
induce disturbances
in the chamber of the lowfrequency
hydrodynamic
type, can be introduced
by(l) Explosive
charges in the fuel feed system
(2) Single-stroke
positive
displacement
pistons
(3) Oscillating
pistons

way that the gas pulse resulting


from the detonation enters the chamber with any desired orientation.
2. Nondirected
explosive
pulses.-The
simulation
of localized
random detonations

closest
which

can occur in a chamber during normal operation


due to accumulation
of unburned propellants
is
achieved
by the nondirectional
explosive
pulse
method as shown in figure 4-68b.
An explosive
is placed into a thin-walled
Micarta shell which
is designed
to be mounted at any desired position in the chamber.
3. Directed nonexplosive
gas Hows.-In
this
method, as shown in figure 4-68c, a flow of gas
from a regulated
high-pressure
source is controlled by a fast-acting
valve.
This valve is
placed as near to the chamber as possible.
This
method additionally
permits a better definition
of
the parameters
associated
with the disturbance.

Chapter

Design

Of

Pressurized-Gas

For the transferof the rocketpropellantsfrom


the tanks to the thrustchamber at the required
flow ratesand pressures,a suitablefeed system
is required.The selectionof :he feed system
will depend on the mission of the vehicle,its
size and weight,thrustlevel and duration,space
availableforthe propulsionsystem, on reliabilityconsiderations,and on other factors. There
is no simple ruleforthe choice between a pressurizedgas feed system (fig.1-12)or a turbopump feed system (fig.1-13). The advancement
in the state of the art of lightweight
pressurized
gas feed systems,
in conjunction
with the availability of high-strength
tank construction
materials, has enlarged
their field of applications
to
engine thrust levels of approximately
100 000
pounds, and total impulse values of over 5 million
pound-seconds.
For large vehicle applications,
turbopump feed systems are predominant.
However, some type of pressurized
gas feed system
is always required even in a turbopump feed
system to supply propellants
to the pump at the
correct inlet conditions.
Classified
according
to their power sources,
four major types of pressurized
feed systems
can
be distinguished:
(1) Stored gas systems
(2) Propellant
evaporation
systems
(3) Systems evaporating
nonpropellants
(4) Systems using products of chemical
reactions
Selection
depends largely upon engine system
design, type of propellants,mission requirements, and availableexperience.
Among the considerationsforselectionof the
type of pressurizedgas propellantfeed system
are(l)

Compatibility
of pressurant
gases with
propellants
and tank materials,
considering chemical interactions,
temperature,
solubility,
etc.
(2) Expected pressurizationsystem reliabilityand complexity,consideringthe state

Propellant-Feed

Systems

of the art of systems


components
used.
(3) Molecular weight of the pressurant
gases:
Lower molecular
weight reduces
required
pressurant
weight per unit pressure
and
per unit tank volume, and thus results
in
lower vehicle system weight at burnout
and thus improved mass ratio.
(4) Pressurization
system specific
weight;
i.e., required pressurization
system
gross weight (including
system components and pressurant),
per unit of weight
of useful pressurant.

5.1 DETERMINATION
REQUIREMENTS

OF

PRESSURANT

The physical and chemical processes which


take place during the expulsion of a liquidpropellantfrom a tank by a gas or gas mixture are
numerous and difficult
to analyze. Applicable
experimentaldata fora selected system areoften
limited. Thus, the basis for the analyticalapproach is frequentlynarrow and uncertain. As a
result,the initialdesign calculationsof the
quantityof pressuringgas requiredmust be considered approximate
until verified experimentally.
The refinement
of the analytical
approach
to minimize discrepancies
between theoretical
predictions
and actual test results
is an art
requiring experience
and thorough understanding
of the physical
processes.
Basic considerations
and necessary
procedures for the calculation
of pressurant
requirements are described
below.

Required Engine System Data and Assumptions


Before startingcalculationsof pressurant
requirements,the followingsignificantengine
oper2tingparameters must be known or assumed:
(1) Design operatingtemperaturerange of the
propellantsand the feed system including pressurant
151

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

152

(2) Type of propellants,


their weights and
corresponding
volumes at the extremes
of the operating
temperature
range
(3) Total tank volumes:
Nominal value and
tolerances
(4) Initial tank ullage volume, percent of total
tank volume at the temperature
limits.
(The term "ullage"
denotes that portion
of a propellant
tank not occupied
by the
liquid propellants.)
(5) Trapped propellant
volumes,
percent of
total propellant
load, at engine burnout
(6) Operating
tank pressure:
Nominal value
and tolerances
(7) Operating
Nominal

duration of the engine


value and variations.

systems:

To avoid later marginal conditions,


calculations should assume that pressurization
must be
supplied for maximum systems operating
duration
even though some missions
may require shorter
durations.
Realistic
assumptions
for the temperature of tanks and propellants
at burnout must be
made. If a mission calls for several
system
restarts
and coasting
periods, the environmental
conditions
during the coasting
periods must also
be given or assumed.

Factors

Influencing

Pressurant

Requirements

Several important factors which will influence


considerably
the final state of a pressurizing
gas
or gases, and thus their required quantity,
are
discussed
below.
1. Propellant
vaporization.-Propellants
evaporate to various degrees from the gas-liquid
interface within the tank.
The amount depends
upon the volatility
of the propellant,
the temperature of the entering gas, the turbulence
of the
gas, the sloshing
of the liquid, the tank geometry
including internal
structural
members, and the
rate of propellant
expulsion.
To whatever degree
vaporization
takes place, it lowers the temperature of the gas and adds propellant
vapor as a
component of the pressurizing
gases.
Also, as
the liquid propellant
level recedes,
a film of
liquid may be left on the tank wall surface,
further contributing
to propellant
evaporation.
2. Tank wall temperature.-If
the pressurizing
gas is hotter than the tank walls, cooling of the
gas and heating of the wall may result.
On the
other hand, aerodynamic
heating of the tank

walls in flight may cause heating of the pressurizing gas. It may also heat the propellant
and
thus increase
vaporization
effects and raise
NPSH requirements
in turbopump-fed
systems.
3. Vapor condensation.-Certain
components
of the pressurizing
gas, such as water vapor,
may condense.
Even if the bulk of the gas remains above the dew point for the condensible
component,
local condensation
may occur at the
tank walls, or at the propellant
surface.
4. Solubility
ol the pressurizing
gas.-If
the
pressurizing
gas contains
components
which are
soluble in the propellant,
diffusion
of these components into the propellant
can occur.
Solubility
is generally
affected by temperature
and pressure
conditions.
5. Ullage gas compression.-If,
before start,
the tank ullage space is filled with low-pressure
gas, onset of pressurization
will cause adiabatic
compression.
This can raise the ullage space
temperature
considerably
during the initial few
seconds of operation.
6. Chemical reaction.-If
any components
of
the pressurizing
gas are chemically
reactive
with the propellant,
the reaction
products may
become a component of the gas.
7. Pressurizing
gas turbulence.-The
heat
exchange between pressurizing
gas and propellant would be extremely large if the gas were
permitted to agitate the liquid propellant
surface.
This effect can be prevented
through the use of
a diffuser which spreads
the gas in a gentle flow
toward the top and sides of the tank.

Design

Calculations

of Pressurant

Requirements

If the system operating


duration is relatively
short, or if the pressurant
temperature
is close
to or lower than the propellant
temperature,
heatand mass-transfer
effects can be neglected.
The
required pressurant
weight can then be calculated by the perfect gas law:
PTVT
Wg- RgTg

(5-1)

where
Wg : required pressurant
weight in the tank, lb
PT = propellant
tank pressure,
lb/ft 2
V T = total volume of the empty propellant tank, ft 3

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GAS PROPELLANT-FEED

Rg =gas constant of the pressurant, ft-lb/Ibdeg R


Tg = mean

temperature

However,
tion

and

higher

volved,

of entering

in cases

the

where

pressurant

pressurant

determined

by

the

requirement

following

Considering
ing

heat

heat

transfer

given

are

in-

best

be

Vv =

from

the

from

tank

Vv:total

volume

pressurant

can

be

(not

the
gas

total
to the

approximated

(5-2).

(5-2)

factor

pressure

(Tu)

vaporized

of the

evaluated

(PT)

and

gaseous

constant
lb-deg

by the

ft _
at the

the

temperature

mixture

of the

at burnout

propellant

vapor,

ft-lb/

The

remaining

glecting

residual

be occupied

tank

volume

at burnout,

propellants,

by

the

can

pressurant

be

ne-

assumed

to

gas

Vg = VT - Vv

where
Q

-total

=experimentally

heat

transferred,

at the

Btu/sec-ft2-deg
=area

of the

tank,

of the

ft 2

tank),

Te = temperature
Tu and

at the

Te

vaporized
tion

the

of

gas

In order

oR

constant

liquid

and

to maintain

for Q should

values

according

heated
to the

Wv

:total

Cpl

: specific
heat of the
Btu/lb-deg
R

liquid

propellant,

hv

=heat
of vaporization
Btu/lb

of the

propellant,

of the
R

Tv

temperature

The
equations
for Tu.

value
(5-2)

and

propellant,

propellant

lb

(5-3)

with

From
for the

equation

of the

the

value

equation:

Thus

liquid

assumed

(Tg-

Tu)

the

Tu can

(5-7)

required

thus

of Wg,
as

well

fixed

Wv, and

Tu must

as

correlated

other

from
value

far,

been

siderable
total
mission

heat

transfer

neglected.

heat

must

be

taken

and

If

value,

then
the

equations:

(Tu - Tv)]

the

tank

if there

walls

walls,

them

into

consideration
propellant

(5-8)

is a con-

between
tank

between

of vaporized

of Tg

satisfy

differential

propellant,

transferred

determination

from

However,

temperature
gases,

value

of

be calculated.

Tg is a predetermined

following

vapor,

be obtained

(5-7)

assumed

values

has

an

balance,

Cpg=specific
heat at constant
pressure
pressurant
gas,
Btu/lb-deg
R

surizing
now

following

WgCpg(TgTu)
= Wv [Cpl (Tv - Te) + hv + Cpv

of Wv can

heat

the

Q : WgCpg

the

Cpv = specific
heat
Btu/lb-deg

the

satisfy

and

+ by + Cpv (Tu - Tv)](5-3)

of vaporized

(5-6)

equa-

where

propellant,

P TV g

gas.

to have

however,

=vaporization

by the

where

weight

is calculated

area

at burnout,

as

assumed

Te)

at burnout,

g-

propellant,

Q = Wv [Cpl (Tv-

of pressurant

gas

law

iq

treated

propellant

case

weight

perfect

of pressurant

sec

of the

Q, is

(in

cross-section

gases

between

heat,

Vg = volume
ft 3

interface,

interface
the

of the

are

interface

This

where

transfer

The

duration,

To-temperature

Both

gas-liquid

gas-liquid

=operating

heat

a cylindrical

(5-5)

Btu

determined

coefficient

(5-4)

occupied

total

Rp=gas

by

Q = HAt (Tu - Te)

vaporized

WvZRpTu
PT

=compressibility

and neglect-

walls,

the

by the

where

beginning

operation

and restarts),

occupied

by

dura-

keeping

at the

a single-start

propellant

equation

forth

volume

is

propellant,

periods

transferred

vaporized

set

first

coast

can

procedure,

partial

15,.3

systems

temperatures

in mind the limitations


of section
5.1.

requiring

pressurant,

longer

The
propellant

SYSTEMS

during

presthe
the
for the

at burnout.

154

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

Equation

(5-3) can be rewritten

Q*-Qw,
=Wv[Cpl(Tv-

where

on experimental
data.
However, no set of equations can be applied directly.
In some cases,
the uncertainties
in pressuriz-

as

Te)+hv+Cpv(Tu-

Tv)]

(5-9)

Qw, = total heat transferred


between tank
walls and liquid and gaseous
propellant during the mission,
Btu.
The positive
(+) or negative (-)
sign indicates
whether QwI is contributed
by, or lost to, the tank
wails.

Furthermore,

equation

(5-7) becomes

Q=WgCpg(Tg-Tu)+_Qw2
where

(5-10)

Qw 2 = total heat transferred


between pressurizing gases and tank walls during a mission,
Btu. Again the
positive
(+) or negative
(-) sign indicates
whether heat is contributed

by, or lost to, the tank wails.


Combining equations
(5-9) and (5-10), the heat
balance considering
heat transfer from the tank
walls can be written as
[VCgCpg (Tg-

Tu)] +-Qw 2-- Wv [Cpl (Tv - Te)


+hv+Cpv(Tu-

Tv)]-(+-Qw_)

Equation

(5-2) can be rewritten

Q= HAtm (Tin

- Te)

ature discrepancies
of the pressurizing
gas at
system burnout, an adjustment
of the pressurant
temperature
at the propellant
tank inlet can often
be made to correct for this difference,
such as
through an adjustment
of the pressurant
supply
from a heat exchanger,
or from a gas generator.
Because of the narrow safety margins employed
in rocket vehicle design,
the effect of varied gas
temperatures
on structural
members must be
carefully weighed.
The following is a sample calculation
to
demonstrate
this design approach:

(5-11)

If the vehicle mission


includes
several
powered flight and coasting
periods,
the calculation
of the heat transfer across the gas-liquid
interface should take the total mission time into
consideration.
as

ing system design can be reduced by providing


adjustability
of the pressurant
temperature
at the
propellant
tank inlet.
In this approach,
the temperature of the pressurizing
gas at system burnout is assumed or targeted from the beginning.
Based on this and other given or assumed data,
the values of required pressurant
quantity and
inlet temperature
can be calculated
by equations
(5-1) through (5-11).
Certain correction
factors
such as pressurant
solubility,
etc., can be applied later.
If the required pressurant
quantity
in experimental
engine system evaluation
deviates from the calculations,
because
of temper-

(5-12)

where
tm =total mission time including
powered flight
and coasting
period, sec
Tm =mean temperature
of the pressurizing
gases during the entire mission,
R.
This is a function of many factors such
as length of coasting
periods,
heat transfer between gases and tank wall, etc.
Other effects such as vapor condensation,
solubility
of the pressurizing
gas in the propellant, and chemical
reactions
of the pressurizing
gas with the propellant
can be included,
based

Sample

Calculation

5-1

From table 3-5, the following data are obtained


for the oxidizer tank of the A-4 stage propulsion
system:
Oxidizer,
N204
Pressurant,
gaseous
He
Tank volume, neglecting
the volume of residual propellant,
(VT) = 119 ft 3
Average tank cross-section
area, (A)=20 ft 2
Tank pressure,
(PT)= 165 psia, or 23760 psfa
Propellant
temperature,
(Te) = 520 R
Calculate
the following:
(a) The total pressurant
weight (Wg) and
required temperature
(Tg) at the tank inlet, for a
single operation time (t) of 500 seconds,
with an
experimentally
determined
heat transfer coefficient (H) at the gas-liquid
interface
of 0.002
Btu/sec-ftLdeg
R. It is assumed the ullage gas
temperature
Tu at burnout is 700R and that
there is no heat transferred
at the tank wall
surfaces.

155

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GASPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

(b) The required pressurant


weight (g/g) and
temperature
(Tg) at the tank inlet, for a mission
consisting
of several powered flight and coasting periods, with a total mission duration (tin) of
18000 seconds.
The mean temperature
of the
pressurizing
gases during the mission
(Tin) is
526 R. The total heat transferred
between pro-

Substitute
this into equation
(5-5), to obtain
the volume occupied
by pressurant
gas
Vg=VT-Vv

= 119-7.13

From equation
weight results:

pellant and tank walls (Qw_) is -2000 Btu. The


total heat transferred
between
pressurizing
gas

(5-6),

and tank walls (Qw2) is -600 Btu. The temperature (Tu) of the ullage gases at final burnout is
660 R.

= 111.87

the required

ft 3

pressurant

PTVg

23760

111.87

Solution
=9.79 lb
(a) From standard

propellant

references,

the

following data are obtained


for N204
at a pressure of 165 psia:
Vaporization
temperature,
Tv = 642 R
Heat of vaporization,
hv= 178 Btu/lb
Mean value of specific
heat in liquid state,
Cpl = 0.42 Btu/lb deg F
Mean value of specific
heat
Cpv=0.18
Btu/lb-deg
Compressibility
factor,
Molecular weight = 92

in vapor

this

into equation

The required
inlet is:

pressurant

at

Tu)

temperature

_ 700:

at tank

995 R

(b) From equation (5-12), the total


ferred at the gas-liquid
interface:

heat

trans-

Q= gAtm (Tin - Te)


520) = 3600

Btu

(5-3):

= g/v [0.42 (642 - 520) + 178 + 0.18 (700 - 642)]


=WvX239.6
Total weight of vaporized
propellant,
Wv = 15.11b
Substitute
into equation
(5-4), to obtain the
volume occupied
by the vaporized
propellant:

=0.002 20 18 000 (526 - 520)


=4320
Substitute

Btu

into equation

(5-9):

4320 - 2000 = Wv [0.42 (642 - 520)


+ 178 + 0.18 (660 - 642)]
g/v = 10.0 lb
Substitute

into equation

g/vZRpTu
PT

(5-4):

10.0 x 0.95x

1544
15.1 0.95 --9--_TM 700

_1544_ x 660
\921
23 760

Vv = 4.45

ft 3

23 760
=7.13 ft 3

(5-7),

- Tu)

1.25 (Tg-

3600
Tg = 9.79 x 1.25

3600 = Wv [Cpi (Tv - Te) + hv + Cpv (Tu - Tv)]

Vv-

into equation

3600=9.79

F
Z = 0.95

Q = HAt (Tu - Te)


= 0.002 x 20 x 500 (700-

results

Q =9.79 Cpg(Tg

state,

The specific
heat of helium, Cpg, is 1.25
Btu/lb-deg
F, and its molecular
weight is 4.
From equation (5-2), total heat transferred
the gas-liquid
interface:

Substitute

Substitute

Substitute

into equation

(5-5):

15_

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

Substitute

Vg= 119 - 4.45=

114.5

into equation

(5-6):

ROCKET ENGINES

ft 3

23 760 x 110.76
W'=

(_)

x 660

= 10.65 lb
Substitute

into equation

(5-10):

4320 = 10.65 1.25 (Tg-

660) - 600

4320 + 600
Tg- 10.65 x 1.25 + 660 = 1030 R
FF VALVE
5.2

STORED

GAS

SYSTEMS

Stored gas pressurization


systems
are widely
used in numerous combinations.
The gas is
usually stored in a vessel at pressures
ranging
from 3000 to 5000 psi and supplied to the propellant feed system at a specified
pressure
level
controlled
by a regulator.
These systems
have
achieved
a high level of reliability.
In earlier
systems,
compressed
nitrogen gas was frequently
used or even air (German V-2), mainly for logistics and supply reasons.
As it became more
readily available,
helium gas found increased
usage because of its substantially
lower molecular weight and thus reduced total pressurant
weight, and its superiority
as an inert agent,
with very low boiling point.
For hydrogen-fueled
engine systems,
reliable
compressed
hydrogen
gas systems
have been successfully
developed.
In general, the most important design requirements for a stored gas system are: low molecular weight of the gas, high gas density under
storage conditions,
minimum residual
gas weight,
and high allowable
stress-to-density
ratio of the
storage vessel material.
Since helium systems
are now the most widely used ones, the following
discussions
will be based on them.

Discussion

of Commonly

Used

Configurations

1. Helium system without heating.-This


pressurization
system is shown schematically
in
figure 5-1. It consists
of a high-pressure
storage
vessel,
a start and shutoff valve, and a pressure
regulator.
Regulated
helium is ducted directly

REGULATOR
TO MAIN
PROPELLANT TANKS
Figure

S-t.-Helium

pressurization
heating.

system without

to the main propellant


tanks.
This has the advantage of great simplicity.
However, the weight
of the system is relatively
high because of the
lower temperature
and thus lower specific
volume
of the gas.
2. HeJium system using thrust chamber heat
exchangers.-This
system, which is used in the
design for the A-3 and A-4 stage propulsion
systems, consists
of a high-pressure
helium storage
vessel,
a start and shutoff valve, manifolded
thrust chamber heat exchangers,
and a pressure
regulator.
A typical schematic
is shown in figure 5-2. The heat exchangers
are part of the
thrust chamber divergent nozzle section and
absorb heat from the thrust chamber combustion
process.
From overall performance
and weight
considerations
it is considered
preferable
to
locate the heat exchanger
in the high-pressure
portion of the system.
The volume increase
of
the gas due to heating reduces the mass required
for tank pressurization.
However, a considerable
quantity of cold, high-density
helium still remains in the storage vessel
at the end of the
system operation.
3. Helium cascade
system.-The
cascade
system shown schematically
in figure 5-3 is an

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GAS PROPELLANT-FEED

SYSTEMS

157

all-helium pressurization system


minimize

designed

to

the weight penalty resulting from cool-

ing of the helium during expansiou.

System

com-

ponents include helium storage vessels of equal


high-pressure level but of different sizes, two of
which

are divided internally by a flexible dia-

phragm, three thrust chamber

heat exchangers,

start and shutoff valve, and a pressure regulator.


During operation of the system, helium flows
from the firstand smallest vessel, through a
heat exchanger,
START AND

SHUTOFF

VALVE

and displaces

completely

helium in the intermediate vessel.

The

the

helium

in the intermediate vessel in turn flows through

IIli

CHAMBER

THRUST

HEAT

a second

EXCHANGERS

heat exchanger

and completely

dis-

places the helium in the last and largest vessel.


The

latter flows through a third heat exchanger

and pressurizes the main propellant tanks.

At

the end of the operation, only the small storage


vessel contains low-temperature, high-density

helium, while the two large storage vessels con-

REGULATOR

tain relatively warm

low-density helium.

contrasts with the preceding


TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
TANKS
Figure

5-2.-Helium
thrust

with low-temperature, high-density helium.

heat

system

using

disadvantages
weight

exchangers.

4.
ically
(_HELIUM

and

complexity.
system

in figure

sure

vessel

or other

internally,
CHAMBER

a start
helium

gas

in the

the

need

storage

vessels

problems
the

._'

/
/

REGULATOR
START

AND

TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
TANKS

SHUTOFF

VALVE

The

gas

required

However,
Figure

5-3.-Helium

cascade

system.

design

apply

required

only

tanks,

warm

residual

Disadvantages

the

are

high-pressure

possibility

of control

of liquid

stored

hydrogen
for the

calculations
to the

net

gross

for a given

weight
system

hydrogen

gas

can

systems

Gas

to pressurize
the

a pres-

higher

propellant

and more complex

for Stored

5.1

and

operation.

of helium

Calculations

valve,

main

vessel.

exmounted

provides

relatively

pressurization

tanks,

in place
above.

shutoff

to the

and

during

pellant

a heat
device

system

assuring

for larger

storage
For

and

the
schemat-

of a high-pressure

containing

This

simultaneously

inside
shown

heat-generating

regulator.

temperature

is

The

are high

heating

system

5-4 and consists

storage

changer

systems

with

vessel.-This

helium

_THRUST

of cascade

Helium

storage

t .....

This

in which

orie large storage vessel remains partially filled

pressurization

chamber

systems

pro-

be used

described

Requirements
discussed

in section

or effective
the

quantity

propellant

of the
depends

stored
also

of

tanks.
gas
on the

158

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

38O
370

"I- MIN. HELIUM TANK -T


PRESS. 3 70 PSIA
LINE Ap

360

--_-__MIN. HEAT EXCH, INLET


PRESS. 3 54 PSlA --

350
340
330

HEAT EXCHANGER Ap (IOOPSI)


320
VALVE

E_

TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
Figure

(3.
I
hl
n-

REGULATOR

5-4.-Helium

25O
(/)
W
240
n_
EL
23O

TANKS
system

pressurization

heaters

260

in storage

using

LINEIP

220

vessel,

REGULATOR,'%9(75 PSI)

210
system

design,

operation,
range

within

Based
total

on the

and

on
which

expressed

the

system

gas

2O0
190

function.

burnout,

requirement

following

during

temperature

must

at systems

stored

by

process

environmental

the

on conditions
or gross

expansion

the

the

can

180

be

170

correlation:

LINE-AP PROPELLANT TANK


PRESS. 165 PSIA

160
Stored

gas

gross_

Net

system

requirement

PRESSURIZATION

gas

storage

vessel

A parameter

in

gross

stored

in the
surant

storage
utilized:

factor,

gas

Residual
+various

gas
lines,

these

as

net

Figure

ratio

sure
drops

gas weight

with

of pres-

for the

weight

thrust

(5-14)

when

to 400

psia.

tem

is

lowest

pressure

to safely
determined

operate
by the

level
the

chamber

heating

stage

pressurization

individual

system

vessel
syspres-

as

process

of the

a system

vessel,

the

source

shown

which

vessel

gas

expansion

tank.

In addi-

provided.

In

to be com-

is provided

within

would

heating
process

system
selected

pressure

5-4,

A-4

pressure

was

is assumed

in figure

without

estimated

oxidizer

storage

for

system.

pressurization

is usually

mission

the

vessel,

For

engine

margin

If a heating
in a storage

5-5 shows
helium

the

pleted

requirement
The

A-4

drops

pressurization

stored

a safety
case,

pressure
tank

Figure

for the

tion,

_ Gross
stored
gas requirement
System
pressurant
net

oxidizer

drops.

of

this

required

5-5.-Estimated

stage

is the

the

or initial

to the

(5-13)

etc.

additions

defined

requirement

vessel

in
heat

exchangers,

to define
use

Pressurant_
use factor

SYSTEM

requirement

Residual

pressurant

pressurant

decays

inside
the

the

expansion

be polytropic.

inside
of the

the
gas

storage
can

be

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GAS PROPELLANT-FEED

assumed

to be isentropic;

ferred

between

equation
the

and

the

following

(1-13)

derived

to calculate

storage

i.e.,

gas

no heat

vessel

the

is

walls.
correlation

final

gas

trans-

Volume

From

of the

regulator,

can

be

temperature

in

of heat

exchangers,

of lines

between

and

Pressurant

"

(5-15)

helium

T 2 = final

Oxidizer

tank

tank

tank

n is

estimated

verified

of helium,

analyses

that

ature

remains

tially

comes

It is

total

Since
in the

exchanger

takes

tank

outlet

the

lower

while

the
the

ume of the

gas

pressure.

Thus,

pressurant

gas

pressurant

range

process

followed

Sample

Calculation

limit

is

no

the

without

c(_c_),but

use
heat

gross

weight,

factor

for single

exchangers.

assuming

with

n = 1.2

a polytropic
in the

initial

equal

quirements

storage

for the oxidizer tank, which

A-4 stage has the higher minimum

assumed
to heat

is

in the

storage pres-

sure requirement.

To this required pressurant

mass

for fuel tank pressurization,

and volumes

limit

must

be

rethe

for a given
propellant
a wider

added.

specified

determines

vessel

results

vol-

storage
tank

net

environmen-

in a heavier
of the

(a_)A net pressurant requirement of 9.79


pounds

pres-

expansion

case

is obtained from sample

(a). Temperature

ual pressurant in the lines downstream


regulators following shutdown
the same
gases

of the

are assumed

to be

as those of the propellant tank ullage

at system

psfa). Residual

gas.

calculation (5-i),

and pressure of the resid-

burnout (700 R and 23 760


gas weight in these lines then

is

5-2

following

data

pressurization

oxidizer

following

regardless
by

and

The following calculations establish the re-

and

of pressurant

requirement,

system,

for case

(5-1).

Solution

essentank

range

for a stated

temperature

surization

of this

gas

temperature

storage

weight,

factor,

purges and valve actuations will have to be

weight

upper

gross
use

temper-

it is

temperature

to calculate

and

through

the

temperature

as
process

for case

vessel.

adequate

temperature.

If an operating
for a system,

found

propellant
place

Same

expansion

process

pressurization,

propellant

(d)

isen-

a characteristic

constant.
to rest

tank

For

(or "stagnation")

compression

propellant

been

flow

lines.
the

analytical

n = 1.67.

it has

an adiabatic

process

during

experimentally.

operation

weight,

factor,

(5-1).

calculation

(C) Oxidizer

expansion

heat

process,

gross
use

pressurant

exponent

and

The

(b) of sample

psia

and

volume,

but

regulator

helium

(b_) Oxidizer

start

most

quired,

vessel,

expansion

calculation

storage-vessel

psia

vessel,

negligible

pressurant

volume,

(a) of sample

vessel,

ft 3

following:

volume,

to assume

used

polytropic

of

2 percent

storage-vessel

expansion

further

in the

vessel,
vessel,

in the

pressure

for the

and

For

tal

(a)

1.0
storage

isentropic

process
treatment
tropic

in the

pressure

helium

=exponent

in the

temperature

helium

P2 =final

The

temperature

helium

Pt =initial

that

the

storage-vessel

where

an

downstream

regulator,

reserve,

Assuming
calculate

T__
T1 = Q___)

lines

ft 3

Volume

exchangers
n-__A

helium

0.4

159

Volume

vessel:

T_ =initial

SYSTEMS

are

given

system

for the

of the

stored

A-4

stage

tank:

Temperature
system
Storage

range
start,

vessel

in the

storage

vessel

500o-560

pressure

at system

It is further
start,

psia
Pressure
burnout,

in the
400

storage
psia

vessel

at

at system

4500

assumed

residual

pressurant

run

inlet

tank

that

conditions,

pressure

is

storage

vessel,

that

the

in the

heat

temperature

of the

exchangers

is

or 995 R, and

of the

residual

or 400

psia.

helium
Thus

that

in the

a value

of

at
the

DESIGN OF LIQUID

160

ix400x144

= 015
.

PROPELLANT

the

Ib

is obtained

for these

Substituting
operating

the

vessel

of the

residual

the

of the

system

initial

and

final

the

tem-

equation

(5-15),

helium

burnout

is

in the

storage

obtained:

1.67--I

T 2 = 500 x ( 400
\4500)

Using

equation

(5-13),

limit

= 500 x (0.089)

the

' = 191R

pressurant

volume

tank pressurization
on the lower
storage

temperature

of the

exchangers

is

inlet

level,

that

of the

_--_)

VL-0.374

3.78

residual

psia.

equation

and mass
ature

are

upper

the

required

for oxidizer

in the

is

vessel,

heat

ex-

to:

start

lb

of the
is

x 560x

x144

xVL

{1544\x500

pressurant

lower

VL

temper-

144xVL
+0.037+0.145

x191

_
- 4.2

ft a

weight:

x 144 x 4.2

1 B2 = 14.45

lb

500

storage

vesincluding

calculated:

2 percent

(5-14),

12.95
-9.79

reserve.

volume

of the

storage

vessel:

12.95

144

-4.3

LOX

tank

(_)x560

ft 3

4500
use

factor:

14.45
10.65

calculation
temperature

(5-1),
is

case

(__,

as

10.65

pressure

in

given

and

ft 3

x 144

pressurant

= 1.325

requirement

14.45
= 4.82

Pressurant

Assuming

volume

the

[1544\

10.832
L =_

hmit

factor:

sample

400x
=10.65+

Yn

pressurant

pressurant
using

lb

temperature

volume

4500x

equation

(5-13),

i,

pressurization

Vu=

pounds.

storage

limit:

Required

net

tank

pressure

reserve.

the

(_b) From

in the

weight

obtained,

4500

the

the

=0.145

weight:

2 percent

From

gas

amounts

in the
run

i x 400 x 144

Gross

use

pressurant
to be at the

helium

The

then

VL

ft 3

x 1.02 = 12.95

sel

lb

x 191

9.975
6.9

pressurant

(560 R),

residual

psfa),

is

=-0.037

or 1030 R, and that

changers

4500

Using

lines

assumed

propellant

23 760

can now
tem-

400 144 x VL --0.035+0.15

=9.79+

including

in these
23 760

in the

R and

of 500 R:

x 144 x V L

Gross

weight

those

(660_

heat

From
4500

as

The

or 400

'_ 1.67

required
for oxidizer
be calculated,
based
perature

gas

same

burnout

0.4

limit

and

into

at system

the

residuals.

pressures

perature

are

at system

residual

lower

temperature,

helium

lines

tank

--_I x 995

ROCKET ENGINES

(c_.) Without
ature
burnout

heat

of helium
can

- 1.36

exchangers,

in the

be expected

the

propellant
to be the

tank

bulk

temper-

at system

average

of the

161

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GASPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

initial and final


age vessel,
or

helium

Tg =

temperatures

in the stor-

500 + 191
2
= 346 R

(_ The expansion
process
of helium in the
storage vessel
is assumed
to be polytropic,
with
n= 1.2. From equation (5-14), the temperature
of
residual
helium in the vessel at system burnout:
1.2--1

Since this temperature


is lower than the propellant temperature,
no heat loss from pressurant
to
propellant
is assumed.
The net pressurant
weight required may then be calculated
by equation (5-1):
23 760 119
Wg:/l_aa\
=21.2
x 346

T2=500x(400_
_4500]

0.4 23 760

helium

in the lines

&)

The residual
system burnout:

- 17.5 lb
X

helium

418

weight

in the lines

- 0.059

at

lb

400 144 x VL +
=21,2+

(_)191

0.071

volume

lower ambient

and mass,

temperature

based

on the

limit:

4500x 144 x V L

21.27
VL =_
= 8.25 ft3
2,58
pressurant

weight:

119

0.4 x 23 760

Pressurant

Gross

net pressurant

lb

From equation
(5-13), pressurant
volume VL
and mass are obtained, based on the lower ambient temperature
limit:

"(__/500

in the propellant

at

x 346

4500 x 144 x VL

2.73
4.--.'.[_7
= 336 R

Tg=500+336=418
2

Ib

23760
Big_ [_A_,\
= 0.071

= 500

The helium bulk temperature


tank at system burnout:

The required
The weight of residual
system burnout:

12

400x 144x VL

(% ooo

+ 0.059

weight =
,

4500 x 144 x 8.25

x 1.02 = 28.2 lb

17.56
L=_=6.01

ft 3

500
Gross pressurant
including
2 percent reserve.
The required volume of the storage

Vu =

vessel

-_)x560 28.2
4500 x 144
- 9.4 fts

is

4500x

weight:

144x 6.01

x 1.02 =20.6

including
2 percent reserve.
The required volume of the storage

lb

vessel:

Pressurant use factor:


28.2
_=1.33
21.2

Vu -

_1_4--) 560 20.6


4500 x 144
- 6.88 ft 3

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

162

Pressurant

20.6
--=
17.5

Design

Experimental
data indicate
that gases of low
molecular
weight such as helium and hydrogen
will not leak through homogeneous
metals such

use factor:

1.178

of Stored Gas System

Components

Since system components


can be expected
to
require relatively
extensive
development
effort
to achieve satisfactory
performance
and reliability, they require careful design considerations.
This is especially
true for large, high-pressure,
lightweight,
pressurant
storage vessels,
pressure regulators,
and thrust chamber nozzle skirttype heat exchangers.
Storage Vessels
Because
of the combined requirement of high
pressure
and light weight, pressurant
storage
vessels
are generally
spherical
in shape and
made of high-strength-to-weight
materials.
PH-15-7-MO stainless
steel, 6A1-4V-titanium,
and light aluminum liners wound with plastic
filaments
for strength,
such as fiber glass,
have
been successfully
employed as construction
materials
for the vessels.
Design details
for
pressurant
storage vessels
will be further discussed in chapter VIII.
For weight estimates
in preliminary
designs,
it is assumed that the vessel is made of two

as good-quality,
hot-rolled
stock or forgings.
However, they can leak through porous metals
such as may exist in castings
and in welded
joints.
Good welding workmanship
and effective
leakage inspection
are most important in the
fabrication
of storage vessels.
Pressure
Regulators
For most pressurization
systems
a regulator
of high accuracy
is a necessity.
Regulation
becomes particularly
difficult
if gases with temperatures higher than 1200 R have to be handled,
or if high flow rates or large pressure
differentials are involved.
Design detail of pressure
regulators
will be discussed
in chapter VII. For
some applications,
a control system combining
a
pressure
switch, a solenoid valve, and an orifice
may be preferred.
Thrust Chamber Heat Exchangers
For helium systems
using thrust-chamber

heat

NOZZLE WALL
HEAT
EXCHANGER

hemispherical
shells,
and that the thickness
of
the weld lands can be accounted
for by assuming
a 3-inch-wide
band of one-half the wall thickness
total

placed
weight

over the weld seam.


Hence, the
of the vessel
can be estimated
as:

Wv = rrd2 pm (pd/4s)

+ 3,_dpm (0.5 pd/ 4s) (5-16)

_.THRUST CHAMBER

where
Wv = weight of the vessel,
lb
d =inside
diameter of the vessel,
p
s

=maximum
=allowable

in

storage pressure,
psia
working stress
of the material,

psi
pm =density
of the material,
lb/in 3
It is of prime importance
in the design of
stored gas systems that the storage vessel be
capable of containing
the gas at high pressure
for long periods of time without loss by leakage.
Frequent
checking
of the storage pressure
or
recharging
is undesirable
in most applications.

f
Figure

5-6.-Thrust

chamber

heat exchanger.

163

DESIGNOF PRESSURIZED-GASPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

exchangers
as shown in figure 5-2, the heat exchanger should be designed
as an integral
part
of the thrust chamber expansion
nozzle.
As a
rule, the heat exchanger
is made of coiled tubing
formed to fit the nozzle contour (fig. 5-6).
The combustion-gas
side heat-transfer
coefficient can be determined
by methods described
in
chapter IV. The heat conducted
through the wall
of the heat exchanger
is assumed to be totally
absorbed
by the pressurant
helium, raising its
temperature.
The determination
of the heliumside heat-transfer
coefficient
and the design of
the heat exchanger
tubing are similar to the regeneratively
cooled tubular wall thrust chamber
analyses.
The number of tube turns for the heat
exchanger
is a function of the helium temperature
rise required and of the heat exchanger
location
at the nozzle.
The various operating
parameters
of a thrust chamber heat exchanger
can be correlated by the following equation:

WhCp (To - Ti)

(5-17)

where
Cp
Ti
To
A
hg

=helium flow rate, lb/sec


= specific
heat at constant
helium, Btu/lb-deg
F
=mean helium temperature
changer inlet, R
=mean helium temperature
changer outlet, R
=effective
area of the heat

pressure
at heat

Sample

Calculation

(5-3)

The following data are given for the design of


the pressurant
heat exchangers
for the A-4 stage
engine thrust chamber nozzle extension,
when
located at the station of area ratio = 10, and used
in parallel:
Helium flow rate through each heat exchanger,
I_h = 0.024 lb/sec
(considers
requirements
for both tanks and for other uses)
Helium specific
heat ratio, y= 1.67
Helium specific
heat at constant
pressure,
Cp = 1.25
Mean temperature
of helium at heat exchanger
inlet, Ti = 346 R
Mean temperature
of helium at heat exchanger
outlet, To : 1030 R (from sample calculation (5-1), case (_)
Combustion-gas
side adiabatic
wall temperature, Taw = 4900 R
Combustion-gas
side heat transfer
coefficient,
fig--5.7
Calculate:

of

x 10 -s

(Btu/in:-sec-deg

F)

(.E) Heat exchanger


tube dimensions,
assuming it to be made of 13V-11Cr-3AC
titanium alloy
with the following physical
characteristics,
at a
recommended
maximum working temperature
range
of 1400-1550 R:

ex-

at heat exexchanger,

compatibility
with the main chamber nozzle wall.
Firm attachment
of the heat exchanger
to the
nozzle wall is mandatory,
since heat exchanger
efficiency
depends on intimate contact.
Selection of tube thickness
must be based on pressure
and thermal stress conditions.

in:

=combustion-gas
side heat transfer
coefficient, Btu/in2-sec-deg
F
ha =helium-side
heat transfer coefficient,
Btu/in2-sec-deg
F
t
= heat exchanger
tube wall thickness,
in
k
= thermal conductivity
of the tube material,
Btu/in:-sec-deg
F/in
Taw : combustion-gas
side adiabatic
wall temperature,
R
Heat exchanger
design must consider that the
temperature
of the helium leaving the heat exchanger at any given time depends on the storage
vessel exit temperature.
The choice of heat exchanger
tube material
must be made with consideration
of its brazing

Minimum yield strength,


Sy : 40 000 psi
Modulus of elasticity,
E-- 12 106 psi
Thermal conductivity,
k= 2.04 x 10 -4 Btu/in 2sec-deg F/in
Coefficient
of thermal expansion,
a : 5.0 10 -_
in/in-deg
F
Poisson's
ratio, v: 0.33
(b) Number
tubing.

of turns

of the heat

exchanger

Solution
(_a) The wall temperature
at given sections
of
the heat exchanger
will vary directly with the
bulk temperature
of the helium in these sections.
Maximum wall temperature
occurs at the heat

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

164

exchanger

outlets.

A mean combustion-gas

side

wall temperature
(Twg) at the outlets of 1400 R
is allowed.
From equation (4-I0), the heat flux
at that section is:
q = hg (Taw - Twg)
= 5.7 x 10 .5 (4900-

1400) = 0.2 Btu/in 2 sec


St- (Pco -t Pg) r + 2 (1-v)k
Eaqt

A tube wall thickness


(t) of 0.05 inch isused.
This will be checked further below for compatibility with pressure
and thermal stresses.
From
equation
(4-19), the mean helium-side
wall temperature is
tq
Twc= Twg --_ = 1400

Using equation
transfer
coefficient

hh = hc =(Twc

4500 x (--_)
0.44
-

2 (1 - 0.33) x 2.04 x 10 -4

= 19800+2200=

1030)

Equation
(4-15) permits determination
Prandtl number of the flowing helium:

Twg at the inlet = 1400- (1030- 346) = 716 R


(mean temperature)
Heat flux q at the inlet = 5.7 10 -s (4900- 716)
= 0.239 Btu/in2-sec

of the

Combined
4xl.67
9 x 1.67_

5:0.665

The viscosity
of the helium
equation
(4-16) is:
_=(46.6
#=46.6

x 10-1)x_ST

according

St at the inlet

2200 x (_)

= 19800+2630=22430

to

psi

Therefore,
it is safe to use the selected
tube
size of 0.440-inch
inside diameter
and 0.050-inch

(4-25)

wall thickness,
with sufficient
margin for the
fact that the heat exchanger
helium inlet temperature will be higher than the maximum at the
beginning
of the process.
(b_) From equation (5-17), the required
effective area for each heat exchanger
element

0.029 Cp# 2 (GO.S._(Tco_

ss

hh: p2 3

A = 0.024 1.25 (1030 - 346)

6.25 x 10-4 = 0.029 x 1.25 x (60.2 x 10-s) 2


(0.665) 2`,3

1
5.Tx10-s

(4*___hh_
s

d0_
d 1.8= 0.235

stress

= 19800+

x 10-1 x 4 _ x (1030) _
=60.2 x 10 -8 lb/in-sec

From equation

psia

combustion-gas
side wall temperature
and the
helium bulk temperature
remains approximately
constant
throughout
the heat exchanger.
Then:

= 6.25 x 10 -4 Btu/in2-sec-deg

47
Pr= 9---_=

22000

The combined pressure


and thermal stresses
at the heat exchanger
inlet are now checked.
It
can be assumed that the difference
between the

heat

0.2
- (1350-

12 x 106 x 5.0 x 10-6 x 0.2 x 0.05


4

0.05

0.05x0.2
- 1350 R
2.04 x 10 -4

(4-20), the helium-side


is calculated
as

q
-Tco)

Inside tubing diameter,


d = 0.44 inck.
Check for combined pressure
and thermal
stresses
at the heat exchanger
outlet (neglecting
bending stress),
using equation (4-27), and assuming bending stress due to discontinuities
to
be negligible

x(103o .ss
k1--_-6-)

0.05
+
1
2.0410 -4 6.25_10
1030-346
4900
2

The nozzle diameter


A-4 chamber is:

at area

-d

=95in

ratio = I0 of the

D = Dt x V1--0-=7.18 x _/i-G= 22.7

in

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GAS

Assuming
face

40 percent

as the

number

effective

of the

of heat

heat

exchanger

internal

tube

exchanger

area,

tube

required

turns

surthe

PROPELLANT-FEED

SYSTEM_

and

processes

mass

is:

pressurant

N=

95

reD x rrd x 0.4

_2 x 22.7x

- 2.42
0.44

turns

x0. 4

5.3

PROPELLANT
This

stable,

concept
low

such

as

which

EVAPORATION
is practical

normal

boiling

cryogenics

and

tank,

and

tank

it is widely

used.

able

for cryogenics

such

as

only

are

average

flow

ullage

gas

main

pro-

by

temperatures.
of the

rate

can

in

the

tank

be

estab-

condition,

correlation

For

propellant

through

or vapor

steady-state

the

influenced

environmental

of evaporation

vent,

the

fol-

(We-Wv)

tkPv

for thermally

WP-pRT

propellants,

cryogenics,

(5-18)

for

It is particularly

of low

within

in turn

SYSTEMS

point
near

rate

the

lowing
lished:

which
and

a given
A

transfer

pollant tank,

165

molecular

where

suit-

weight,

_Pp = required

hydrogen.

flow

propellant

rate

per

engine

bled

off for

tank pressurization, Ib/sec

[Pe =rate of propellant evaporation in the tank,


Ib/sec
Application in Pump-Fed

Systems

Propellant evaporation systems

OA_EOU$

for pump-fed

*[0

engines usually employ

propellants tapped off

downstream

and vaporized in a heat

_AIN

TANK

of the pump

exchanger,
ize the
were

after which

main

exchanger
engine
as

the

ized

propellant

downstream
is

the

oxidizer

tank

in a heat

hot

is

of the
from

tubes.

The

lated

as

tors.

latter

The

if a narrow
both

cases,

series,
The

determined
pump

often

and
inlet

to fail

propellant

the

main
main

(or tank

flow

tank

main

by

bleeding

fuel

mani-

Figure

5-7.-Typical

heat

exchanger

design.

cooling

can

be regu-

valve

com-

particularly
essential.
may
with

In

be used
valve

r_ibr" :

in

or

open.
rate

flow
and

cox._.,

[
bled

ft

for

pressurization

propellant
outlet),

OUCT

or by regula-

orifices

reliability,

EXHAUST

ex-

The

preferred,

limiting

design-biased
required

by

5-8,
is

off

vaporized

chamber

in figure

3-3

main

turbine

tanks

..---..

thrust

tapped

and

chamber

thrust

of regulation

flow

G4S FRO_

TURBINE

if it

stage

turbopump.

of both

are

band

vaporization

A-2

switch/solenoid

shown

manifold

in figures

at the

thrust

for increased

regulator

the

the

pressure

binations,

the

is pressurized

of the

by pressure

vapor-

cooled

pump

oxidizer
stage

downstream

I_

are

the

passage

by oxygen

oxidizer
located

of this

hydrogen

fold

from

cooling

for the

provided

exchanger

tank

gases

schematically

of the

duct

fuel

directly

pressurant

downstream

MOT
_

uoo.o,,..

pump-fed

exhaust

in a regeneratively

the

-_

TO M,L{N

they

a typicalheat

Sometimes

chamber

As shown

5-8,

haust

turbine

is bled

coolant

which

shows

in an LOjRP-1

source.

of the

chamber.
and

The

heat

from

5-7

used

system.

used

tank

Figure

design

OXY6EN

_OGEN

they are used to pressur-

propellant

withdrawn.

_,*$EOU$

NI'I
FUEL

is
rate

by the

at
heat

Figure

5-8.-A-2
zation

stage
system

propellant
schematic.

tank

pressuri-

E_AUST

166

DESIGN OF LIQUID

Wv = average

flow

rate

through

the

tank

PROPELLANT

(b)

vent,

propellant

pump
p

=density
=gas

rate

(per

engine)

propellant,

lb/ft

pressure,

of the

=number

lb/ft

(a_) The

propellant

vapor,

lb/ft

ft-lb/

is
of the

tank

of engines

ullage

in the

gas,

Calculation

The
A-2

stage
Main

engine

data

were

and

vehicle

operation
oxidizer

engine,
Main

oxidizer

Rate

of oxidizer

equation

system

of liquid

constant

48.2

Substitute

established

and

is

per

71.38

gaseous

qb-deg

oxygen

R.

data

to obtain

rate

oxygen

of the

ft-lb

this

(5-18)
flow

Wp=

for the

systems

given

the

above

into

required

steady-

oxidizer

pressurant:

(1.6-1.64)_2.50
4

lb/sec

of evaporated

rate

lb/sec
tank

290.Sx45x144
71
.---_--8_ 4{_.2 x-2"20

during
b(.b) The

at pump
(table

inlet,

per

lb/ft

3-3)

pressure,

3, and

drogen

45 psia

evaporation

is

tank,

1.6

rate

1.64

through

the

oxidizer

of the

tank

= 386

this

(5-18)

flow

i.
oxidizer

constant

gas

rate

liquid

and

data

hy-

R.

given
the

is 4.42

gaseous

ft-lb/lb-deg

to obtain
of the

hydrogen

of the

above

required

evaporated

into
steady-

fuel

pressurant:

tank

lb/sec

Temperature

of the

the
1544/4

equation
state

flow

density

Substitute

in the

lb/sec

vent,'

gas

1544/32=

conditions:

flow

290.5

Average

rate,

pressurization.

(5-4)

following

steady-state

density

3, the

state
Sample

flow

tank

=temperature

steady-state

off for fuel

Solution

liquid

tank

constant

required

bled

at

lb/sec

of the

lb-deg
T

flow

inlet,

PT :propellant
R

The

engine,

lb/sec
= main

ROCKET ENGINES

ullage

59.838144
P - _-_
x _g _-i-20

gas,

(42-6"6)--2.21b/sec
4

220 R
Main

fuel

59.8

flow

rate

lb/sec

Main

fuel

Rate

of fuel

(table

tank

per

engine,

at pump

inlet,

3-3)

pressure,

38 psia

evaporation

in the

vent,

fuel
z 6.6

Temperature

flow

rate

tank,

through

4.2

the

fuel

tank

Number

fuel

tank

ullage

gas,

have

in the

vehicle

system,

positive

flow rate,
per
pressurization.

hazard

reasons,

vehicle

design

very

likely will require provisions


to prevent venting during first stage boost.
Also, during regulated
A-2
stage operation,
venting should normally
not occur, as
it would be a performance
loss.
However,
as a pressurization
system
performance
margin it is well to lay
out the system on the basis of some vent losses.
Also, in cryogenic
systems
it may be desirable
to increase
the tank pressures
toward the end of stage
operation
to improve pump NPSH conditions,
when the
upper tank layer, in which somewhat
warmer liquid
may have accumulated,
is about to reach the pump.
This can be simply done by opening an orificed
bypass around the regulator,
using the vent valve liftoff
pressure
as the regulating
factor.

fact

is

pressure

However,

must

the

method,

allow

engine

for the

of design

pointed

through

later
require

important

throughout

an efficient

of vent

since

usage

regulation

is

vehicle

increased

will

of run-to-run

more

if used

storage

because

evaluations

further

for

These

and

in slightly

It is

ularly

for LH 2.
to atmosphere,

pressures

probably

pre-

densities;

storage

consistent

value.

not

that

for a number

absolute

4.4

resulting

deviations,

parameters

specialists

vented

temperatures.

corrections

tank
fire

and

calibration-run

input

(a_) The required


steady-state
engine,
bled off for oxidizer
tank

propellant

when

resistance,

engine
of engines

engine

the

even

propellant

Calculate:

IFor

consider

small

some
lower

for LOX

containers,
valve

120 z R

that

slightly
71.0

values

lb/sec
of the

noted

to use

instance,

lb/sec
Average

It is
fer

than
out

venting,

systems
since

partic-

duration,

onboard

maximum

their

that

vent

gas
rate

anticipated.

Applications

in Pressurized

Gas

Propellant

Feed

Systems
The
tems

application

somewhat
result

of propellant

to pressurized
limited.

in lower

propellant

evaporation
feed

Evaporation

pressurant

storage

sys-

systems

systems
vessel

is

can
weight,

DESIGNOF PRESSURIZED-GAS PROPELLANT-FEED

as compared to stored gas systems,


because
of
higher storage densities
and lower storage pressures.
However, this can be offset by the higher
required pressurant
weight per unit volume, particularly
for propellants
with higher molecular
weight.
For hydrogen, the principal
propellant
with low molecular
weight, another limitation
exists because of the low critical
pressure.
To
obtain reasonable
volume increases
due to vaporization,
the tank pressure
must be kept sufficiently below the critical
pressure.
It must be further considered
that the propellant evaporation
concept,
when applied to
pressure-fed
systems,
requires
a pressurization
system within a pressurization
system,
since a
separate
stored gas is required to expel the pressurant from the storage vessel as a liquid, after
which it is vaporized
in a heat exchanger.
This
system comprises
a relatively
complicated
array
of components,
line assemblies,
heat exchangers,
and support structures.
It is further complicated
because
of the auxiliary
pressurization
system
required to initiate
the main propulsion
system
operation.
As shown schematically
in figure g-6,
the main fuel tank of the A-3 stage propulsion
system is pressurized
by evaporated
hydrogen
supplied from a separate
liquid hydrogen storage
vessel
which in turn is pressurized
by the stored
helium gas.
The hydrogen pressurant
is vaporized in the heat exchangers,
located at the thrust
chamber nozzle extensions.
For the various reasons
stated,
the propellant
vaporization
principle
will be used only for the
fuel tank of the A-3 stage, for which it still
appears attractive
because
of the relatively
low
pressure
levels selected,
and the low molecular
weight of hydrogen.
The A-3 oxidizer tank will
be pressurized
by stored helium gas.
This decision was further influenced
by the difficulty
in
handling gaseous
fluorine and by its toxicity.

5.4 SYSTEMS
EVAPORATING
NONPROPELLANTS
This type of pressurizationsystem has not
been employed frequently.Two types of inert
cryogenics could be considered applicable: liquid nitrogenand liquidhelium. Both have definitedisadvantages
which would generally
preclude their use in nonpropellant
evaporation
systems.
The main disadvantages
are their

167

SYSTEMS

solubility
in the propellants
(nitrogen in liquid
oxygen) and a storage temperature
significantly
lower than that of the propellants
(liquid helium).
The system design for this concept is similar to
that of the propellant
evaporation
systems.

5.5 SYSTEMS
USING PRODUCTS
CHEMICAL
REACTIONS

OF

Pressurizationsystems using hot gaseous


products generated from solid or liquidpropellants have been successfullydeveloped forthe
storableliquid propellantengine systems.
Another technique
used with noncryogenics
is
the main propellant
tank injection
pressurization
system.
Here a hypergolic
fluid is injected
into
the tank
products
tank.

and pressurization
is provided by the
of the reaction
occurring
within the

These methods are not applicable


to cryogenic
propellants
because
the products
of reaction,
such as water, will solidify,
and because
the
heat of combustion
will raise undesirably
the
bulk temperature
of the cryogenic
propellant.
EspeciaiIy
in the ease of liquid hydrogen,
bulk
heating cannot be tolerated
because
of its limited liquid range (normal boiling point to critical
point).
Two important considerations
for the application of combustion
products
for pressurization
are: propellant
compatibility
and gas temperature level.
Except for very short operating
durations (few seconds),
fuel-rich hot gases are used
for fuel tanks, to prevent reactions.
Similarly,
oxidizer-rich
hot gases are applied to oxidizer
tanks.
The temperature
of the product gas pressurant should be maintained
at, or should be
cooled to, a level below 1200 F.

Solid Propellant
Systems

Gas Generator

Pressurization

Severaleffectivesolid-propellant
gas-generator
systems have been developed fortank pressurizationof prepackaged
storable
liquid propulsion
systems.
Pressurant
gas temperatures
up to
3000 F and tank pressures
up to 2000 psia have
been proven successful
for short-duration
applications.
This pressurization
method is primarily
employed for its inherent simplicity,
low production cost, long-term storability,
relatively
light

_m

168

DESIGN

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

system weight, and compactness.


The system is
usually composed of two electrically
fired initiators, or squibs, a charge of igniter pellets,
safety and arming devices,
a pressure-relief-type
regulator,
and the propellant
grains.
A device to
cool the hot gases may be required in specific
applications.
Figure 5-9 shows a typical design.
The
solid-propellant
gas-generator
assembly
is enclosed in an insulated
steel housing.
This housing is installed
within an aluminum casing,
which in turn is an integral part of the propellant
tank constructed
of aluminum alloy.
The gas
generator
unit is completely
integrated
into a
compact package ready for testing,
storage,
and
installation
into the propulsion
system, with
minimum effort and maximum safety.
All gas
outlets are hermetically
sealed with burst dia-

ROCKET

ENGINES

phragms to maintain
system
long storage periods.

even after

Upon ignition,
the propellant
grains are
ignited by the igniter pellets.
Combustion
starts
and produces pressurization
gases for the duration for which the propellant
grains were designed.
The burning rate of the grain, and in
turn the gas pressure
level of a solid propellant
system, is affected
by grain bulk temperature.
Within a given service temperature
range, the
grain is designed
to produce required gas pressures and flow rates at the lower temperature
limit.
When operating at a higher temperature,
the pressure
level will be maintained
by a regulator which vents all excess
gases overboard.
The required grain charge is sized for full propulsion system operating duration at the upper
temperature
limit, at which maximum grain burning rate occurs.

OXIDIZER

O-RING

reliability

TANK

SEALS

PROPELLANT
_URST

ISOLATION

DIAPHRAGM

DIAPHRAGM

PELLETS
INHIBITOR

INHIBITOR
PERFORATED
SUPPORT
PLATE

DIAPHRAGM

PREssuRERELIEF
TYPE
REGULATOR

SQUIB
MOLDED
CHOPPED
PHENOLIC

-/_- O- RING
GAS

PROPELLANT
GRAINS

SEAL

_AS GENERATOR
HOUSING
_8-7-5
STEEL
/--FF-34
FORMICA
INSULATION

DIFFUSER
/_OXIDIZER

EXPULSION

PROPELLANT

Figure

5-9.-Typical

solid

propellant

gas generator

TANK

DIAPHRAGM

WALL

pressurization

system.

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GASPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

169

The selection
and design of solid propellant
gas generator pressurization
systems
must consider potential
problem areas, notably the
following:
(1) Chemical and temperature
compatibility
of
the gases with the propellants
(2) Pressure
regulation
difficulties
(3) System clogging
by solid particles
carried
in the gas stream
(4) Lack of restart
capability
(5) Requirement
to vent gas rapidly in the
event of premature
engine cutoff.
A brief discussion
of several
solid propellant
systems follow:

commonly

w_.,--_ WITH
SOLID IGNITER
PROPELLANT

used

1. Solid propellant gas generator system without cooling.-This


system is shown schematically in figure 5-10 and consists
of a solid propellant charge, including
igniter,
filter, and hot
gas regulator
or orifice.
This system is suitable
mainly for relatively
short durations.
Upon ignition, hot gases are fed through the filter, regulated, and ducted to the main propellant
tanks.
The regulator dumps excess
gas overboard,
for
which a vent line must be provided.
As an alternate, an orifice may be installed
in place of the
regulator.
In the latter case, the engine thrust
level is a direct function of the solid gas generator pressure
which in turn is a function of
environmental
temperature.
2. Solid propellant
gas generator system with
solid coolant.-This
system (fig. 5-11) consists
of a solid propellant
charge and igniter,
a sublimating solid coolant,
a filter and a regulator.
In operation,
the hot gases generated
are cooled
as they pass through a bed of solid material,
subjecting
it to decomposition
or sublimation.
Thus the cooling process
simultaneously
results
in additional
gases available
for pressurization.
The gases finally pass through a filter and are
regulated
and dueted to the main propellant tanks.
In a typical design an ammonium nitrate base
propellant
is used with a theoretical
flame temperature of 2320 F. Oxalic acid pressed
into
pellets
is the solid coolant.
This chemical
decomposes
endothermically
at temperatures
above 250 F, producing a mixture of CO, CO:,
and H20.
The desired temperature
level of the
mixed product gases is achieved
through selection of the propellant
to coolant ratio.
Final gas
temperatures
as low as 400 F have been obtained.

FILTER_
VENT_--J

__PRESS-RELIEF
'-r'
REGULATOR
_ORIFICE
V
TO MAIN PROPELLANT
TANK

Figure

5-10.-Solid

TYPE
OR

propellant
gas generator
out cooling.

_--- SOLID

with-

PROPELLANT

ID COOLANT

FILTE
PRESSURE-RELIEF
TYPE REGULATOR

VENT

TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
Figure

TANK

5-11.-Solid
propellant
gas generator
tem with solid coolant.

sys-

170

DESIGN OF LIQUID

3.

Solid

azide
of' this
hot

propellant

cooling
system

gases

leaving

the
metal

sition

cooled

nitrogen.

azide

pack

of the

to remove

any

lated,

directed

The

600 F).

passing

These

advantage

main

Helium

yields

generator

the

gas

sists

the

are

filtered

then

regu-

propellant

pressurization

with

a solid-propellant
and

solid-propellant

gas.

storage

gas
as

propellant

helium

gas

5-13)

con-

vessel

generator

mounted

a pressure

regulator.

provides
additional

of this

large,

low

(fig.

and

A disadvantage

for a relatively
vessel.

Liquid

solid

charge

expansion

nitrogen
(as

system
gas

a filter,

for helium

sys-

system

pure
level

heating.-This

internally,
The

tanks.

relatively

temperature

of a high-pressure

with

decompo-

to be removed

gases

4.

a bed

and

contaminated

particles,

of these

Here,

through

from
have

The
to the

in providing

5-12.

is often

remaining

is

in figure

However,

separator.

tems

at a reasonable

resulting

azide.

with

components

decomposes

pure

in a cyclone

system

ROCKET ENGINES

principal

when

wluch

particles

and

generator

shown

material

essentially
with

are

are

of azide

gas

pack.-The

PROPELLANT

both

heat

pressurizing

system

is the

need

high-pressure

storage

Generator

Pressurization

Propellant

Gas

monopropellant

Systems

SOLID
PROPELLANT
CHARGE

Both

liquid

propellant

gas

cessfully

for generating

generators

and liquid
have

been

pressurant

bi-

used
gases

sucin

-_//

AZI DE
PACK
\\\\\

\\\\\

!
SEPARATOR
I CYCLONE

_FI

LTER

JL
,.-.-..-,

DUMP

TYPE

REGULATOR

TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
TANKS
Figure

5-i2.-Solid
tem

propellant
with

azide

cooling

gas

TO MAIN
PROPELLANT
generator

pack.

sys-

Figure

5-13.-Helium
gas

system
generator

TANKS
with
heating.

solid

propellant

i :_

DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GASPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

engine systems with relatively


long operating
durations.
The selection
and design of a gas
generation
system must consider propellant
compatibility,
operating
temperature
limits of
propellants
and tank materials,
and gas molecular
weight.
Among the monopropellants,
hydrazine
is considered the most satisfactory
with respect
to
chemical
characteristics
and molecular
weight of
the product gases.
The decomposition
products
of hydrazine
can be made even lighter by catalytic decomposition
of the ammonia component.
The gases contain no carbon, deposits
of which
could lower the heat transfer rate if a heat exchanger is used for cooling.
The theoretical
gas
decomposition
temperature
of pure hydrazine
is
1800 F. Additives
can be used to reduce the
temperature
level.
To meet the requirement
for compatibility
with the propellant,
bipropetlant
gas generators
possess
the flexibility
of operation
at either
fuel-rich
or oxidizer-rich
conditions.
Thus the
same propellant
combination
duce both a fuel-compatible

can be used to proand an oxidizer-

compatible
pressurant
gas.
For instance,
nitrogen tetroxide
in combination
with hydrazine,
UDMH, and various other amine fuels permits
hypergolic
starting and stable operation
in either
fuel- or oxidizer-rich
modes.
Several avenues
are open to meet the pressurant gas temperature
requirement.
The aforementioned
flexibility
to operate at either fuel- or
oxidizer-rich
conditions
has the additional
ad-

weight.
However, if excess
fuel is injected
to
lower the temperature
to well below 1000 F, this
benefit is not obtained,
resulting
in a gas with
high molecular
weight which readily condenses.
Liquid-propellant
gas-generator
pressurization systems,
some of which will now be discussed,
require relatively
complex components
and controls.
Their selection
and application
is
determined
mainly from vehicle mission requirements, such as long operating
duration,
restart,
etc.
1. Single gas generator system with injection
cooling.-Here,
a single generator
provides pressurant gas for both the fuel and the oxidizer
tank.
The liquids employed consist
of either a
monopropellant
and a nonreacting
injection
coolant, or a bipropellant
combination
with cooling
achieved
by injecting
an excess
of one propellant.
As shown in figure 5-14, system components include a small, high-pressure
helium gas
storage vessel assembly
(including
start, relief,
and fill valves),
a pressure
regulator,
two liquid
storage vessels,
and a gas generator
assembly
(including
controls).
This system is potentially
simple and reliable. The product gases are cool enough for use
in the propellant
tanks.
The difficulty
is to find
a combination
of liquids that will produce a
product gas meeting all requirements,
including
compatibility
with both propellants.
It has been
demonstrated,
however, that fuel-rich
gases can

vantage to combust well off stoichiometric


mixture ratios, resulting
in lower temperatures.
A
limitation
exists if one of the bipropellants
is
also a monopropellant
which continues
to decompose exothermically.
The cooling effect can
also be obtained by injecting
into the hot gases
a given amount of noncombustible
liquid which
absorbs heat when evaporating.
A third method
of cooling is heat exchange
with one of the liquid propellants
in a heat exchanger.
This can be
applied with essentially
any propellant
combination, provided the cooling liquid can safely absorb the heat transferred
from the gas.
The requirement
of low molecular
weight will
be met by most fuel-rich product gases if they
are at approximately
1000 F, where the complex
organic compounds
composing
most fuels are
cracked into simple gases of low molecular

171

(_R

HELIUM

EGULATOR

GAS

GENERATOR

L ts uSED

TO

MAIN

P_LLA_T
Figure 5-14.-Single
tor system

TA_KS

liquid propellant
gas generawith injection
cooling.

172

be used

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

to pressurize

storable

oxidizers.

For

instance,
ammonia-rich,
ammonia-nitrogen
tetroxide gas generator
products and hydrazine
decomposition
products with either water or ammonia
injection
have been successfully
applied as the
pressurant
for storable
oxidizers.
2. Single gas generator-helium
system.Figure 5-15 shows the main components
comprising this system.
The number of propellant
tanks
depends on whether a monopropellant
or bipropellant gas generator is used.
The hot gas generator products are ducted to a heat exchanger
where heat is transferred
to the cold helium.
The heated and expanded helium gas is then
used to pressurize
the main oxidizer tanks, while
the gas generator
gases are used to pressurize
the main fuel tank.
While the system efficiently
uses the available
heat for both tanks, it has the
disadvantages
of requiring a moderate-size,
highpressure
helium storage vessel
and of pressure
regulation
problems.
3. Dual bipropellant
gas generator system
with injection
cooling.-The
major components
for this system are shown in figure 5-16. During
operation,
fuel and oxidizer are fed to the gas
generators
by pressurizing
the auxiliary
propellant tanks with helium.
One gas generator
operates with excess
fuel injection
to produce relatively cool, fuel-rich
gases which are used
directly to pressurize
the main fuel tank.
The
second gas generator
operates
with excess
oxi-

-]

REGULATOR

x
PROPELLANT

SECOND
PROPELLANT
TANK
(BIPROPELLANT
GAS

I....

TAINK

GENERATOR)_

ENERATOR

L._
EXCHANGER
HEAT

TO

:t
OXIDIZER
TANK

1
TO

FUEL
TANK

Figure 5-15.-Single
liquid propellant
tor helium system.

gas genera-

HELIUM

AUXILIARY
PROPELLANT
TANKS

FUELGAS

GENERATOR

OXIDIZER

- RICH

"_

TO

MAIN

OXIDIZER
TAN

Figure

R ICH

G/LS GENERATOR

TO

MAIN
FUEL

TAN K

5-16.-Dual
bipropellant
gas
system with injection
cooling.

generator

dizer injection
to produce relatively
cool,
oxidizer-rich
gases which are used directly to
pressurize
the main oxidizer tank.
A design
problem is produced by the need to balance the
output of the two gas generators
and to provide
proper pressure
control in both tanks.
Gas temperatures
as low as 600 F have been successfully generated
with these systems.

Main PropellantTank DirectInjection


PressurizationSystems
The directinjectionsystems employ injection
of small quantitiesof fueland oxidizerintothe
main oxidizerand fueltanks,respectively.
Following hypergolicreaction,the pressurizing
gases are thus produced withinthe main propellanttanks themselves.
The fuel system (fig.
5-17) includes
a small, high-pressure
helium
storage vessel assembly,
a helium pressure
regulator,
and two small auxiliary propellant
tanks from which propellants
are injected into
the main tanks.
The series injection
system
(fig. 5-18) consists
of only one auxiliary
oxidizer
tank for main fuel tank pressurization,
or vice
versa, instead of two separate
auxiliary
tanks
for each main tank.
The series system takes
advantage
of the situation
where one of the main
propellant
tanks can operate at a slightly lower
pressure
than the other.
In the case shown in
Figure 5-18, a small quantity of the main fuel
supply is fed through a regulator to the main

,a mml
DESIGN OF PRESSURIZED-GAS

PROPELLANT.

173

FEED SYSTEMS

HELIUM
_

!REGULATOR

_REGULATOR

MAIN
FUEL
TANK

5-17.-Main

propellant
injection

oxidizer
offer

tank.
the

]=.

surization
safety,

and

by number
reliability,

regulated

tank

these
simplest

ability

pressures

are

OF

direct

Figure

5-18.-Main

propellant
injection

systems

appear

method

of pres-

of components,
and

5.6 SELECTION

dual

system.

Although

lightest

tank

MAIN
OXIDIZER
TANK

MAIN
FUEL
TANK

Figure

THE

to

system

to produce

The

four

vehicle

steady

questionable.

principal

mission

material

selection

clude

storability,

system

start,

and

controllable

closely

or variable).

chemical

inertness,

condensible
At the beginning of the design of a pressur-

instant

and

start

in-

and

pressure

freedom

and

pressurant

soluble

re-

levels
includes

This will

number

selection,

components

the

task in view

be attained

economically

is conducted.

a relatively complex

basis

of failure

modes,

of tank pressurization tech-

development

time

niques developed.

In the course of the study,

nents

can

which

able

systems

ability

levels

include

thrust

chamber

heat

figuration and uniform assumptions

for mission

structural materials, and other

factors affecting the pressurization system

de-

development

pressure
and

sign are adopted to permit valid weight and size

mined

comparisons

ization

of the various systems

studied.

entirely
system

funds

effort

storage

regulators.

number

level

System
the

weight

generator

hot-gas

performance

which

of

Compoconsider-

of gross
is

reli-

assemblies,
large

and

basis

must

limits

satisfactory

exchangers,

vessels,
on

the

to require

toward
gas

of system

of which

allotted.

be expected

all information pertinent to the wide range of


A standard vehicle con-

and

is

complexity,

within

and

and proper

Reliability

of system

reliability

of the great number

excessively

products,

level.

ous design approaches

provide a technical basis for systems

on the

from

gas

temperature

evaluated

and performance,

and

requirements

Compatibility

ization system, a preliminary study of the vari-

is gathered.

are:

reliability,

Mission

(constant

direct

propellant

system

performance.

series

criteria

requirements,

compatibility,

system

tank

system.

PRESSURIZATION

SYSTEM

but can become

HELIUM

highducting
is deterpressur-

influenced

by

J.74

DESIGN

TABLE

5-1.-Comparisons

o[

OF

Various

LIQUID

Tank

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

Pressurization

ENGINES

Systems

for

the

A-4

Stage

Total

Propulsion

Number

System

of i System

quantity
of system

complex

overall

System
overall

component

weight,

volume

components

designs

percent

Stored gas
and generants

System

Helium

Gas

Helium

with thrust chamber

Helium

heating (fig.5-2)
Helium-no

produced

)ercent

at 995 R aver-

11

100

100

at 354 R aver-

182

183

17

81

75

15

79

72

53

12

11

70

ii

11

63

51

16

48

16

age
Helium

heating (fig.5-I)

Helium
age

Helium

cascade

(fig.

5-3)

Helium

Helium

at 1000

average
Solid

propellant

heating

gas

helium

generator

(fig.

Helium,

5-12)

ammonium

nitrate

base

aMixed

grain

helium

propellant

and

solid

products

at

I000 _ R average
Solid propellant
gas generator
with solid subliming
coolant
(fig. 5-10)

Ammonium

Solid propellant
gas generator
with azide
cooling
(fig.
5-11)

Viton

Single

Helium,

liquid

propellant

generator-helium

Dual liquid
generator
cooling

grain,

azide

lithium

aN)lid
ucts

propellant.l

azide

propellant
prodat 1000 c R

Nitrogen

at I000 c R

coolant

bHelium

hydrazine

5-14)

at

oxidizer,
products
fuel

propellant
gas
with injection
(fig.

base

acid

pellets

gas

(fig.

nitrate

oxalic

Helium,
nitrogen
tetroxide,
ammonia

1000 R on
hydrazine
at 1200 R on

aAmmonia-rich

gas

generator
products
1000 R on fuel;

5-15)

at

N20,-rich
gas generator products
at
I000 R on oxidizer
aQuestionable
compatibility
of pressurant
with
bMarginal
pressurant
temperature
level on fuel.

pressurant

molecular

weight.

The

system

is

entire
part

treated

the

as

for

A-4

stage

sion

was

constant-thrust,
different

system

tank

weight

system.
require

full-duration
pressurization

since

at

confor

vehicle

were

parts
the

mis-

and

or

Eight

two

valves

are

relatively

production
overall

(stored
are

used

weight

helium

with

comparison.

Quan-

components
storage

ves-

a quantity

Designs"

refers

development

Instead
and

percentages

for

"Total

considered

long

cost.

systems,

5-1,

identical

Component

requiring

system
ing)

i.e.,

check

for

table

include

design;

high

values

in

Components"

"Complex

various

compared.

presented

System

like

two.

single-start,
operations.

systems

was

results
of

sels

burnout.

system
The

of

are

study

The
tity

the

components

design

to

system

pressurization

pressurization

propulsion
assumed

specific

the

weight,

system

preliminary
the

of

inert

and

vehicle

A sample
ducted

and

weight

pressurant
of

weight

gross

propellants.

of

volume
of

thrust

time

absolute
of

the

of
to

the

selected

chamber

heat-

Chapter
Design

of

In high-thrust,
rocket

engine

tems,

as

4-58,

shown

higher

surized
tems

gas

sures,

feed
thus

saves

in large

2-10,

in lower

inlets

is

larly

feed

hydrogen-t'ueled

Turbopump
low

and

by

the

weight,

with

f_oa

sys-

the

required

pres-

percentage

As the
tinues,

overall

the

role

becomes

of total

particularly

Figure

6-3

trend

toward

propellant

higher
rocket

of turbopumps

of even

greater

chamber
engines

in an

system
as

power

expressed

as

range

of pump

liquid

in

an envelope

a
rate.

operating

propellant

shown

for a number

flow

does

rocket

figure

6-2.

of turbine

of actual

power

turbine

designs.
con-

engine

importance,

engine

propellant

6-1

proportionaI

pressure,

is

depicts

the
in an

........
in figure

chamber

for various
applications

ohown

engine

A representative

requirements

of liquid

weight

turbopump

engine

As

combinations,

increasing

pumps.

vehicles.

pressure

propellant

parameters

of high-porto

engines.

turbopump-assembly

at the

Systems

introduction

rises

while

supplied
tank

for two

the

weight

pressures,
required

with

to pres-

putnp-inlet

pressure

considerable

sys-

3-3,

compared

propellant-tzL_k
of the

propellant

systems

when

relatively

portion

chamber

This

liquid

1-13,

systems.

only

and
major

thrust

tem

result

Propellant-Feed

turbopump

in figures

performance

require

the

long-duration
applications,

generally

and

Turbopump

VI

sys-

io_,oo0

particu-

IO
8
L_

Z
*oo0

ZU
ItP-LUOMM.
!

_-

LOz'

pooi

__.LOX/LH

,,,,HI

I0

J,,,,,I

Figure

,LJ,,,I

6-2.-Range

SO/S_O

'*104
_

_
FLOW,

NIN4.

_zO_.

,,,,:L

IO_OCO

'00_00

GPM

of

operation

pellant

pumps.

for

typical

pro-

7O

40i

,, ..=.30;
20

h.

LOX/RP,
0

,
500

CHAMBER
Figure
and

6-1.-Variation

Ilow

ratios

with

I000
PRESSURE,

1500

i
mo

PSI

of turbopump/engine
change

2000

of chamber

i(x_

to,ooo
TURBINE

weight
pressure.

Figure

6-3.-Envelope

_o,o(_

i ooo.o(x_

HORSEPOWER

of

rocket

engine

turbine

designs.
175

,ummm
DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

176

OUTLET
6.1 ELEMENTS
OF TURBOPUMP
PROPELLANT
FEED SYSTEMS
The supply

of propellants

to the inlet

INLET---_

pumps at required minimum pressures


is customarily considered
the responsibility
of the vehicle
propellant
system and thus of the vehicle designer.
The main function of the turbopump feed
system then is to raise the pressure
of the prot_ot_,_,_t_ received from the vehicle tanks and
deliver them to the main thrust chamber, through
ducts and valves,
at pressures
and flow rates
commensurate
with rated engine operation.
A
turbopump feed system may consist
of the following basic elements:
(1) Propellant
pumps
(2) Turbine(s)
to drive them
(8) A power source for the turbine(s)
(during
engine start as well as main stage)
(4) Speed reduction gear transmissions
(if
any)
(5) Lubrication
system for bearings and gears
(if any)
(6) Shaft-speed
pickup for instrumentation
and
for safety purposes
(overspeed
cutoff)
(7) Accessory
drives (if any)
(S) Propellant
inlet and discharge
ducts (if
any)
(9) Turbopump mounts

CENTRIGUGAL
IMPELLER
SINGLE

STAGE

CENTRIFUGAL

CROSS-OVERVOLUTES 7

MULTISTAGE

Pumps

The principalrequirementsof a rocket engine


propellantpump are reliability,
optimum speed,
lightweight, high deliveryrateat maximum pressure head, smooth flow fora wide range of operating conditions,and high efficiency.The most
widely used pump types are centrifugal(orradial)
flow, axialflow, and mixed flow pumps. Centrifugal pumps are generallydesigned with a single
stage, while axial pumps are primarilyof multistage design.
However, multistage
centrifugal
pumps with crossover-type
volutes have also
been considered.
Various pump configurations
are shown schematically
in figure 6-4.
1. Centxilugal
pumps.-Almost
all operational
rocket propellant
pumps (except those for highflow, high-pressure
liquid hydrogen applications)
are of this type.
They can handle large flows at
high pressures
efficiently
as well as economically in terms of weight and size.
The elements
of a centxifugal
pump are shown in figures 6-5,

PUMP

OUTLET

CENTRIFUGAL

PUMP

OUTLET

INDUCER_/L..f;::

MULTISTAGE
Propellant

DRIVE

of the

Figure

6-4.-Schematics

E_X
G

AXIAL

of various
rations.

tV: L_::E LLER

PUMP
pump configu-

6-14, 6-43, 6-47, and 6-48. Centrifugal


pumps,
like other steady-flow
rotating machinery,
consist essentially
of two basic elements:
the rotor
and the stator.
Their working principle
is the
acceleration
of the fluid flow by imparting kinetic
energy to it in the rotor and then decelerating
or
"diffusing"
it in the stator.
This results
in
increased
fluid pressure
head. The rotor assembly usually includes
an inducer,
an impeller, and
a shaft.
The stator assembly
consists
of a
casing with stationary
diffuser
vanes, a volute
with discharge
outlet, shaft bearings,
and seals.
An inducer
is an axial-flow-type
impeller.
Its main function
is the increase
of the static
pressure
of the entering
fluid sufficiently
to
permit normal operation
of the main impeller.
An inducer can reduce the pump inlet pressure
net-positive
suction head (NPSH) requirements

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMPPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

177

_- VOLUTE PASSAGE
(TO DISCHARGE)
PUMP CASING

FRONT WEARINGRING
REAR WEARING RING
(OPTIONAL FOR HYDRAULIC
BALANCING OF AXIAL
THRUST IN PLACE OF BALANCE RIBS)
ALANCE RIBS

DRIVE
FLUID
SHAFT__

__

SHAFT BEARINGS
INLET FLANGE

SHAFT SEALS
DIFFUSER VANES
Figure

6-5.-Elements

substantially.
The impeller of a centrifugal
(or
radial) pump basically
is a rotating wheel with
radial vanes.
Fluid is admitted axially to the
impeller which, when rotating in an enclosure,
ejects it at the periphery
with increased
velocity
(fig. 6-5).
The primary functions
of the pump stator assembly are: diffusing
(i.e., decelerating)
the
fluid to convert the velocity
head into pressure
head, collecting
and redirecting
the fluid to the
pump discharge
outlet, and providing structural
support and a pressure
enclosure
for the pump.
The main function of the wearing rings shown in
figure 6-5 is to provide axial thrust control and
to minimize internal leakage,
or circulating
of
the fluid between the high-pressure
(discharge)
and the low-pressure
(inlet or suction)
zones.
External leakage along the shaft is prevented
by
the use of dynamic shaft seals.

of a centrHuga1-flow

pump.

2. Multistage
centriiugal
pumps.-For
higher
pressure
rises, multiple-stage
centrifugal
pumps
can be designed
if a single stage proves limited.
The basic construction
of a multistage
pump is
similar to that of a single-stage
pump, except
that proper channeling
of the fluid between
stages is added.
3. Multistage axial pumps.-This
design is
well suited to liquid hydrogen service
which
entails
the problems of extremely
low fluid temperature and density.
Low fluid density resultsin high-volume
flow and in high pressure-head
rise requirements.
For applications
at either
c_
flow rates higher than 60 lb/sec
or pressure-head
rises above 1400 psi, a multistage
axial flow
pump is generally
superior with respect
to construction
and performance.
Elements
of an axial flow pump are shown in
figures 6-6, 6-51, and 6-53. The rotor assembly

DESIGN

178

OF

LIQUID

PROPELLANT

ROCKET

ENGINES

V ROTOR BLADES
PUMP CASING
'\

STATOR BLADES
'\

VOLUTE PASSAGE
(TO DISCHARGE)

\,
\

TFLANGE

'\
\\

SHAFT
I

FLUID
FLOW

DRIVE

SHAFT SEALS
\

INDUCER

SEAL

SEAL

6-6.-Elements

consists
of an inducer,
a cylindrical
rotor with
multiple rows of rotating blades, and a rotor
shaft.
The stator assembly
includes
a cylindrical casing with rows of stationary
blades spaced
between inducer and rotating blades,
a volute
bearings,

INTERNAL

EARING

Figure

casing,

BEARING

-_--.
INTERNAL

and seals.

An inducer is placed at the pump inlet to


supply the fluid to the main-pump section at the
required pressure
and velocity.
Both rotor and
stator blades have a hydrofoil shape.
The main
function of the rotor blades is to accelerate
the
flow relative
to the stator and thus to increase
the kinetic energy of the fluid, while the stator
blades, acting as diffusers,
convert the velocity
head of the fluid into pressure
head.
However,
the velocity
vector of the fluid in the axial direction is kept constant
throughout
the various
stages
of the pump.

of an axial-flow

pump.

Turbines
The turbines which provide shaft power to the
propellant
pumps derive their energy from the
expansion
of a high-pressure,
high-temperature
gas to lower pressures
and temperatures.
The
basic elements of a turbine are shown in figures
6-7, 6-14, and 6-54. Turbines
can be divided
into two major types:
impulse turbines
and reaction turbines.
Impulse turbines
can be either
single or multiple stage.
Reaction
turbines are
usually multistage.
Various turbines
employed
in rocket engine applications
are described
as
follows:
1. Single-stage,
single-rotor
impulse
turbine.This turbine consists
of a single-rotor
disk or
turbine wheel to which is attached
a row of turbine blades or buckets.
Gas is fed to the rotating blades

through

stationary

nozzles

(fig. 6-8).

DESIGN

STATIONARY

INLET

OF

TURBOPUMP

PROPELLANT-FEED

NOZZLES

,/--

GAS MANIFOLD

179

SYSTEMS

FIRST

ROW

BLADES

ROTATING

-STATIONARY

BLADES

SECOND

OR SECOND ROW NOZZLES

ROW ROTATING

BLADES

DIAPHRAGM
BEARING
HOUSING

ROTATING

SEAL

TURBINE

SHAFT

DRIVE

BEARINGS
'-- TURBINE

EXHAUST

DUCT

J
---TURBINE
-- TURBINE

SHAFT

SEALS-

/
Figure

6-7.-Elements

of

WHEELS

HOUSING

turbine.

DIRECTION
OF MOTION

Figure

of

6-8.-Schematic
rotor

impulse

a single-stage,
turbine.

single-

Figure
rotor,

6-9.-Schematic
velocity-compounded

of

single-stage,
impulse

twoturbine.

180

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

In the nozzles,
the gas pressure
is converted
into kinetic energy (velocity head) with attendant
static pressure
drop. The gas flow velocity
is
maximum upon entering the rotating blades, where
the kinetic energy of the gas is imparted to the
turbine rotor as mechanical
energy of rotation.
Ideally, the static pressure
of the gas remains
constant
when it passes
through the rotating
blades (except for the effects of friction).
2. Velocity-compounded
impulse turbine.Figure 6-9 shows a schematic
of this turbine
type. Here, two separate
rows of rotating blades
instead of one are used to transfer the kinetic
energy of the gas discharged
from the set of stationary nozzles.
A row ot stationary
blades is
placed between the wheels to guide the gas into
the second set of moving blades.
This principle
is credited
to Curtis who originally
developed
it.
Ideally, the entire pressure
drop occurs in the
stationary
nozzles.
The gas velocity
decreases
during passage
through the first row of rotating
blades, remains constant
through the stationary
blades, and decreases
further as it passes
through the second rotating
row. Velocitycompounded
turbines are considered
single
stage, since only one pressure
step is involved.
3. Pressure-compounded
impuIse turbine.-As
shown schematically
in figure 6-10, the expansion of the gas is accomplished
in steps, through
two or more rows or stages of stationa_'
nozzles, each set being followed by a row of rotating blades.
A design objective
is that the velocity, and thus the kinetic
energy, of the gas flow
is the same at the entrance
of each row of rotating blades.
This results
in equal energy
transferred
to each rotating
blade row, while the
pressure
drop in each stationary
nozzle row will
vary. Since the pressure
is greater in region A
than in region B, it is necessary
to separate
the
stages by a sealing diaphragm
to prevent bypass
flows (fig. 6-7).
However,
because
of clearances required at the rotating
seal between diaphragm and turbine shaft, some losses do occur
at this point due to leakage
from stage to stage.
4. Reaction
turbine.-The
main difference
between an impulse turbine and a reaction
turbine (shown schematically
in fig. 6-11) is that in
an impulse turbine no static pressure
drop occurs
(no expansion)
while the gas passes
through the
rotating
blades, whereas in a reaction
turbine the
pressure
does drop (expansion
occurs).
Both

Figure 6-10.-Schematic
compounded

Figure

6-II.-Schematic

of a two-stage,
impulse
turbine.

o[ a reaction

pressure-

turbine.

impulse and reaction


wheels are driven by a
change in momentum of the gas.
In a pure
reaction-type
turbine, the driving force is derived entirely from the reaction
due to gas expansion within the rotating blades (similar to the
gas expansion
in a rocket nozzle).
In actual
reaction
turbine designs,
however, a portion of
the driving force is derived from impulse due to
gas impingement
on the rotating blades.
Turbine

Power

Sources

In most applications
the turbine is
gas produced in either bipropeltant
or
pellant gas generators.
Other turbine
sources have also been used, such as

driven by
monopropower
"tapoff"

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMPPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

and "topping"
systems.
Typical turbine power
sources
are shown in figure 6-12 and are described briefly as follows:
1. Bipropellant
gas generator.-This
is the
most widely used system since it has the advantage of using the engine main propellants.
2. Monopropellant
gas generator.-This
provides the simplest
gas-generating
system.
However, it requires
a third propellant
if neither one
of the main propellants
is suitable
for monopropellant application.
3. Thrust chamber bleed.-This
is applied in
"tapoff" engine systems.
Gases are bled off
directly
from the main combustion
chamber to
drive the turbine.
4. Topping.-In
a topping cycle,
such as with
a hydrogen-fueled
engine system, the heated
hydrogen gas emerging from the thrust chamber
cooling jacket is used as the turbine working
fluid before being injected
into the main combustion chamber.
In systems
using a monopropellant
as one of the main propellants,
the monopropellant can be decomposed
and used to drive the
turbine prior to injection
into the main combustion chamber.
Topping gas turbine drives render
the highest possible
theoretical
cycle efficiency.
5. Dual combustion.-The
entire fuel flow
reacts with a portion of the oxidizer in a bipropropellant
gas generator
and thus provides the
gas to drive the turbine.
The usually fuel-rich
exhaust gas is then ducted into the main combustion chamber and reacts with the balance of
the oxidizer.
Dual combustion
cycle
equals that of the topping cycle.

efficiency

For most systems,


an auxiliary
power source
is required during engine start to drive the turbine until the main power source takes over.
The energy and its rate of delivery required for
the start transient
depend to a large extent on
the engine system design.
Several common turbine power sources
for engine start are as
follows:
1. Monopropellant.-In
systems using a liquid
monopropellant
gas generator,
the fluid is supplied by an independently
pressurized
tank, such
as in the German V-2 engine.
Thus, no additional turbine power source for engine start is
required.
2. Bipropellant
start tanks.-In
a system
using a liquid-bipropellant
gas generator,
fed
from the main propellant
system, bipropellant

A.

BIPROPELLANT

B.

181

MONOPROPELLANT

C.

THRUST
BLEED

_$T

D.

Figure

TOPPING

E.

6-i2.-Typical

DUAL

i
i

T.
c._.

CHAMBER
(TAPOFF)

TURaJNE CMA=aER
_s _XE R_, TOll

COMBUSTION

turbine

power

sources.

start tanks pressurized


to up to 90 percent of
rated pump outlet pressures
supply the propellants to the gas generator
during engine start
until main propellant
pump discharge
pressures
build up. In some applications
(first stages), the
start tanks have been made a part of the groundsupport equipment.
3. Main propellant
tanks.-Experimental
engine systems
have been successfully
started
with the propellants
supplied
directly
from the
vehicle main propellant
tanks, thus initiating
gas
generator
and main thrust chamber operation until
pump "bootstrap"
occurred.
In a hydrogen-fueled
topping cycle engine, hydrogen vapor is used
under tank head pressure
to start the turbine
directly.
4. Stored gas.-Stored
gas under high pressure
has been used to spin the turbine during engine
start.
In the case of hydrogen-fueled
engines,
hydrogen gas stored in a rechargeable
bottle is
used to drive the turbine during initial as well
as restarts.
5. Solid propellant
gas generator.-Solid
propellant gas generators
or turbine spinners,
as
shown in figure 4-49, have also been widely used
to power turbines
during engine start.

Turbopump Drive

Arrangements

The specific
type of coupling between
turbine
and pumps depends not only upon the propellants
being pumped but also on the design of the overall engine system.
Various turbopump drive
arrangements
are shown schematically
in figure
6-13. Where a single turbine directly
drives both
propellant
pumps through a common shaft, the
turbine can be located either on the shaft end

182

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

DIRECT

DRIVE

GEARED

DUAL

O_A.

pump shaft.
The turbopump gears and bearings
are cooled and lubricated
either by a separate
oil supply system, or by a fuel additive
sub-

SHAHS

TURBINES

IN

SERIES

F FuEa F,u_p
*" _'_

g. 1URBINES

C. SINGLE

Figure

GEARED

6-I 3.-Principal

IN

PARALLEL

PUMP

tllrbopump

drives.

(with back-to-back
pump arrangement),
or between pumps.
In this case both pumps and turbine will operate at the same shaft speed.
Geardirven turbopump arrangements
include:
the
pancake type, which uses different reduction
gears and is applied where there are speed differentials
between pumps and turbine;
the offset
turbine, with both pumps on one shaft but driven
through a gear train: and the single-geared
pump
where one pump is mounted with the turbine on
the same shaft, while the other is driven through
a reduction
gear.
Dual-shaft
turbopump arrangements with pump and turbine for each propellant
on separate
shafts include:
two gas turbines in
series with the discharge
gas from the first turbine driving the second turbine;
and two gas
turbines
in parallel,
both receiving
gas directly
from the power source.

Description

of Developed

Turbopump

Systems

Figures 6-14 and 6-15 illustrate


a typical
liquid bipropellant
rocket engine turbopump system. It was developed
for a 188000-pound-thrust
LOX/RP-1
booster engine.
Figure 6-14 shows
the major elements
of this turbopump design.
Figure 6-15 is a cutaway view of an actual assembly with the inlet elbow ducts attached.
This assembly
is a dual-pump unit consisting
of
an oxidizer pump, a fuel pump, a reduction gearbox, an accessory
drive adapter,
and a turbine.
The turbine is started by hot gases from a turbine spinner (solid propellant
gas generator)
and
powered from a liquid propellant
gas generator
during mainstage.
The turbine shaft drives a
series

of reduction

gears,

which

in turn drive the

system (fig. 6-17). During mainstage


operation,
the turbopump supplies
oxidizer and fuel to the
main thrust chamber as well as to the gas generator at the required pressures
and flow rates.
Operating
characteristics
and materials
of construction
for this turbopump are listed in table
6-1.
Both oxidizer and fuel pumps are of singleentry, centrifugal-flow
type.
They are mounted
back to back on a common shaft, one on each
side of the gearbox.
The fuel pump is bolted to
the gearbox, while the oxidizer pump is secured
to it by radially inserted
steel pins.
These pins
allow the oxidizer pump housing to expand and
contract
during extreme temperature
changes
without distortion
and misalinement.
Each pump
has an axial-flow
inducer,
a radial-flow
impeller
with backward curved vanes, stationary
diffuser
vanes, and a volute.
The propellants
pass from
the inducers to the guide vanes in the impeller
inlets through the impeller rotor vanes into stationary diffuser vanes in the pump casing and
into the pump volutes.
The diffuser vanes assure uniform pressure
distribution
and reduction
of fluid velocity
around the impellers.
Balance
ribs are provided on the back side of the impellers to neutralize
pump shaft axial thrust.
The gearbox includes
a series of full-depth
reduction spur gears with integral bearing inner
races, gear carrier and main shaft bearings,
accessory
drives, pump shaft bearing seals, and
a bearing heater on the oxidizer pump shaft.
A
drain manifold is provided for horizontal
drainage. The gears reduce the speed of rotation
between turbine and pump shaft by an overall
ratio of 4.88 to 1. Details
of typical
turbopump gears and bearings
are shown in figure 6-16.
The pump shaft turns c:lockwise as viewed from
the oxidizer pump. The sequence
of powertransmission is as follows:
turbine to high-speed
pinion gear, to intermediate
shaft gear, to intermediate pinion gear, and to pump shaft gear.
Power is also transmitted
to a main accessory
drive gear from a drive pinion gear mounted on
the intermediate
gear shaft.
The turbine is an impulse-type,
two-stage
pressure-compounded
unit (fig. 6-10). It is
bolted to the fuel pump housing and consists
of
hot gas inlet manifold,
stationary
nozzles
and

DESIGN

OF

TURBOPUMP

PROPELLANT-FEED

FUEL
OXIDIZER

183

SYSTEMS

PUMP

PUMP
.UTE PASSAGE (TO DISCHARGE)

PUMP
GEAR

BOX
PELLER

BALANCE

RADLAL- FLOW

RIBS

IMPELLER

WEARING

RING

IUCER
_MP INLET
IMP SHAFT

PUMP INLET
FLANGE AND

AND

SHAFT

SHAFT

SEAL

SHAFT

BEARING
ROW

ROTATING

ROW

SECOND

ROW

NUT

BLADES

ROTATING

BLADES

BLADES OR
NOZZLES
WHEELS

ACCESSORY
DRIVE
PAD
SHAFT

TURBINE DRIVE
GEAR TRAINS
INLET

GAS

SHAFT

GEAR

E_ELpu,,P

=-_V', Box ,_

"_=

Figure

blades,

firstshaft,

ing

the

""

6-15.-Cutaway
view
assembly.

turbine

turbine

and
and
shaft

second-stage
a

splined
to

NOZZLES

elements

Figure 6-I4.-Major

dry,

the

.....

of

turbine
quill

shaft

high-speed

DIAPHRAGM

MANIFOLD

STATIONARY

PUMP

AND

SEAL
SEAL

TURBINE

LOX

SHAFT
NUT

'

TURBINE

turbopump

wheels,
connectpinion

SEALS

TURBINE

of a typical

turbopump.

gear.
The turbine shaft is supported
on the inboard side by a ball bearing;
on the outboard
side, by a roller bearing.
Carbon-ring
shaft
seals are used to prevent hot-gas leaks.
The
turbine inlet manifold distributes
the gases to
the first row of stationary
nozzles
which, in turn,
distribute
the gases to the first row of rotating
blades.
When leaving these, the gases again
increase
their velocity
when passing
through the
second row of stationary
nozzles.
They finally
pass through the second row of rotating blades
and leave the turbine through an exhaust
duct.
A sealing
diaphragm between the first and second turbine wheel prevents
the hot gas from bypassing the second row of stationary
nozzles.
In later systems,
a fuel additive
blender unit
(fig. 6-17) was substituted
for the oil lubrication
system to increase
reliability
and to reduce
weight by eliminating
the separate
oil tank, its
pressurizing
equipment,
plumbing, and controls

184

DESIGN

Figure

OF LIQUID

PROPELLANT

G-iG.-Typical

turbopump

ROCKET

gears

ENGINES

and

bearings.

"FULL"

INDICATOR

INDICATOR
, ,>.

,.,,.,

....,,...,

ADDITIVE

CHAMBER

.!i_:}!;_ii:.':!:{H _---i':?,i:!i'%i:._

ADDITIVE

' /L PLUG ,
!ili
Ii
_, ,1
__,-=:_#!_
____/

t ..

t
[
_,/

'

OUTLET
i

PISTON

.";._
:}ii!
iC{i

ADDITIVE
DRAIN

-_

_._ ADDITIVE
BLENDING

PORT

FILL

-J'
_

CHAMBER

"

L_

L_ METERING

SPOOL-'

--

ORIFICE

/-STRA,NER
ASSEMBLY

INLET PORT
FUEL
UNDER
TURBOPUMP
DISCHARGE
PRESSURE

Figure

G-I7.-Fuel

additive

blender

uniL

DESIGN

TABLE

6-1.-Operating

OF

TURBOPUMP

Characteristics

and

PROPELLANT-FEED

Materials
Figure

o[

185

SYSTEMS

Construction

[or

the

Turbopump

Shown

in

8-14
Oxidizer

Fuel

Pumps-

Fluid

...............................................

inlet
Inlet

density
pressure

........................................
(total)
.................................

Discharge

density

Discharge

pressure

....................................
(total)

.............................

rate

Shaft

speed

...........................................

lb/ft

80.0 psia
70.95 lb/ft

57.0 psia
50.55 lb/ft

psia

1023.0

966.0 psi
2751.0
ft

3257,4
gpm
518.0 lb/sec

2007.6
gpm
225.7 lb/sec
653'

..........................................

power

.........................................

NPSH required .......................................


Casing
material
......................................
Inducer
material
.....................................

Shaft

material

percent

72.1

percent

2117
35.0

bhp
ft

1565
35.0

bhp
ft

TENS
7075-T6

material

Bearing

.....................................

50.T6

aluminum

aluminum
alloy

TENS
sand

alloy

50.T6 aluminum
casting
'

alloy
4340
9310

.....................................

sand

casting

die I 2024-T351
[

.......................................

material

rpm

75.5

forging
Impeller

psia

835.2 psi
1696.2
ft

.........................................

Efficiency
Shaft

RP-1
50.45

915.2

Pressure
rise in pump ................................
Pump developed
head .................................
Volume
flow .........................................
Flow

Liquid oxygen
71.38
lb/ft a

aluminum

alloy

plate

] 9669-48230-3
[ sand casting
alloy
alloy

aluminum

alloy

steel
steel

Turbine:
Inlet

gas

Exit

pressure

gas

(total)

pressure

..............................

(static)

exhaust

psia

32.86

psia

18.21

ratio:

Inlet
Inlet

pressure
(static)
............................
temperature
.................................

517.8 psia
1200 F

temperature
.................................
rate .......................................

938 F
17.34 Ib/sec

Exit gas
Gas flow

inlet/static

597,6

Pressure
gas
gas

Total

.............................
..............

Brake horsepower
....................................
Shaft speed
.........................................
Efficiency
..........................................

3793

Housing
Nozzle

Hastelloy
Hastelloy

Wheel

material
.....................................
block material
................................
material

Shaft

......................................

material

Bearing

hp

31740
rpm
66,2 percent
"B"
"B"

Timken
alloy
16-25-6
4340 alloy
steel

.......................................

material

.....................................

9310

alloy

speed
material

ratio
................................
.....................................

TENS

AMS-5727

steel

steel

Gearbox:
Reduction
Gearbox
Gear

and-shaft

Bearing

material

material

previously
of

the

fuel

tapped

at

the

fuel

pump

inlet

the

The

port
chamber

fuel

pressure

is

blender

a small
off

and

The
admitted
and
causes

the
the

on

of

a chemical

metering
of

fuel
to

to

works

amount

through

outlet

lubricant.

tive

9310
9310

.....................................

adding

to

as

...............................

required.

principle

1/4.855

using

entering

the

top

side

piston

of

chamber.
to

displace

mixture
blender
the

to

inject

addi-

aluminum
steel
steel

into

the

chamber.

The
where

gears

bearings.

and
Figure

The

turbopump

and

pound-thrust

6-18

and

system.
aircraft

flowing

mixture
it

sand

It

was

(2.75
through

then

lubricates

table

casting

forging

amount

fuel

turbopump

alloy

die

a proportionate

additive
ing

orifices
this
the

blending

the

50-T6
alloy
alloy

flows
and

6-2

percent)
the
to

cools

superperformance

the
the

illustrate

developed

blend-

another
for

a 6000rocket

of

186

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

NPSH.

Pump

inducers,

are

fabricated

impellers,

shaft

and

cast

]URBINE

u_L

housings

.---T:--

' '

steel.

Turbine

blocks

form

The

manifold,

wheel

Turbopump

stainless

and

nozzle

weldment.

of Timken

SYSTEM

DESIGN

series

Hastelloy-X

is made

6.2 TURBOPUMP

300

housing

an integral

turbine

AND

from

alloy.

PERFORMANCE

PARAMETERS

performance

and design param-

eters are closely related. Variation of the turboFigure

6-18.-Cutaway

view

turbopump

of

an aircraft

rocket

pump

assembly.

design and operating parameters

engine system
engine

(shown

Pumped
and

schematically

fluids

JP-4

fuel.

centrifugal
single

which

single-rotor

supported
tween

the

overhung

directly

impulse

antifriction

two

pumps,

by a pressure-fed
used

is

on both

lube
pumps

driven

just

oil

specifications.

shaft
be-

are

6-2.-Aircraft

is

of the

Inducers

operation

ating

Rocket

From

this, the selection of the

ability and performance

Turbopump
The

are

at a low

Turbopump

Oper-

Characteristics

System

"best

simply

reli-

is made.

Performance

Pumps:
Fluid ....................
90% H:O 2
Density ..................
86.7 lb/ft 3
Inlet pressure (total) .......
25 psia
Discharge pressure (total).,
862 psia
Pressure rise in pump ......
837 psi
Pump developed head ......
1382 ft
Volume flow .............
106.8 gpm
20521b'sec
Flow rate .................
30 000
Shaft speed ...............
60 percent
Efficiency ................
Shaft power ............... 87 bhp

Fuel

performing"

defined

payload

level,
takeoff
ture

1.

510 psia
25.5 psla
2O
1364 F
910 F
0 54 lb/sec
112 hp
30000 rpm
40 percent

with

the

a given

increment:

thrust

chamber

is

heavi-

thrust

gross

chamber

stage

specific

combination,

operating

performance

mix-

efficiency).

affects

the

vehicle

pay-

ways:

Turbopump
of the

stage

system

affords

on propellant

and

in three

component

turbopump

burnout

weight.-Since

components

weight,

it directly

the

is

part

affects

of

stage

payload.
2.

Required

pump-inlet

head.-Required
lates

into

required

If it is raised,
weights

3.

Turbine

gas
the

of propellant
charge
ciencies,
impulse
the

case

decreases
impulse

tank

are

usually

than

the

of the
the
and

and
and

ejected

thrust

overall

dis-

turbine

at a lower
gases

cycle),
engine

turbine

is a function
pump

and

chamber

decreases

the

the

rates,

of pump

topping

thus

reduce
weight.

of which

flow

pressure

pressurization

thus

burnout

rate

trans-

tank

[love rate.-Since
flow

types

pressures,

and
and

for a given

gases,

directly

propellant

increase

payload

pressure

pressure

main

system

drive

suction

suction

level.

stage

Turbine:

and

(based

ratio,

weight

which

or velocity

weight;

load

turbopump

that

for a vehicle

Turbopump
JP-4
50.5 lbtft s
15 psia
657 psia
642 psi
1910 ft
264 gpm
284 lb/sec
rpm
40 percent
25 bhp

as

range

impulse

Oxidizer

Inlet gas pressure (total) ,..


Exit gas pressure (static)...
Pressure ratio:
Total inlet*static
exhaust
Inlet gas temperature .......
Exhaust gas temperature ....
Gas flow rate .............
Brake horsepower ..........
Shaft speed ...............
Efficiency ................

and mechanical

can satisfy engine system

best design with respect to overall systems

est
TABLE

and

turbopump

lubricated

system.

to permit

on

The

forward

bearings

of two

located

The

design procedure includes the evaluation

configurations which

by a single-

turbine.
bearings

and

The

to back

performance.

of all possible design approaches

peroxide

consists

back

system

4-60).

hydrogen

turbopump
mounted

by

turbine.

in fig.

90 percent

The

pumps

shaft

stage,

are

will con-

tribute to the optimization of both turbopump

their
system
the

effispecific

(except
flow

rate

specific

allowable

vehicle

in

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMP PROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

stage burnout weight.


For a fixed weight of
engines,
tanks, guidance,
and other equipment,
a
decrease
in allowable
stage burnout weight results in decrease
of payload weight.
The relation
between turbine gas flow rate
and stage payload weight can be expressed
by
an equivalent-weight
factor, EWF, which is defined as the decrease
of payload weight (lb) as a
function of turbine flow rate (lb/sec).
EWF is
proportional
to the ratio between turbine exhaust
specific
impulse (Is)te and thrust chamber specific impulse (Is)tc.

(6-1)
(Is)tc

The total effect of the turbopumo on allowable vehicle stage payload,


i.e., the equivalent
weight of the turbopump, EW, is the sum of turbopump component
weight, Wtb , and the product of
EWF and the turbine weight flow rate, _i,t:
EW : Wtb + (EWF) (#t)

(6-2)

Equation
(6-2) permits a quantitative
definition of the "best performing"
turbopump system
possessing
the lowest equivalent
weight.
Values
for the turbopump equivalent-weight
factor EWF
range from 5(lb/lb/sec)
for booster stage engines to 200(lb/lb/sec)
for upper stage engines.
The equivalent-weight
EW helps to establish
the
optimized
point between turbine and pump efficiencies,
and corresponding
turbopump component
weights.
It is not practical
to include the effects
of pump inlet pressure
on vehicle tank weights,
since the required information
is usually unavailable to the turbopump designer.
It is advisable
however, that the pumps should be designed
for
the lowest possible
inlet pressure.

Sample

Calculation

(6-1)

The following design data are set forth for


the hypothetical
A-1 stage engine:
Turbopump weight, Wtb , 1900 lb
Turbine gas flowrate,
wt, 92 lb/sec
Turbopump equivalent-weight
factor EWF,
55 lb/lb/sec
Determine
the turbopump
per engine.

equivalent

weight

(EW)

187

Solution
From equation
(6-2):
Turbopump
equivalent

Turbopump

System

Design

weight

per engine
= 1900 + 92 x 55
: 6960 lb

Parameters

In the design of turbopump systems


the following parameters,
which are often interdependent,
are considered
paramount and will be discussed:
(1) Propellant
properties
(2) Pump developed
heads and flow rates
(3) Pump specific
speeds
(4) Pump net positive
suction head (NPSH)
(5) Pump efficiencies
(6) Turbine overall performance
and operating
efficiency
(7) Turbopump
system cycle efficiency
(8) Turbopump
system calibration
and offdesign characteristics
No simple rules are available
for optimizing
the correlations
of these parameters
when designing a specific
type of turbopump for a given
engine systems application.
Generally
speaking,
however, available
pump suction pressure
together with the basic pump flow characteristics
will determine
the maximum shaft speed at which
the unit can operate.
The higher this shaft
speed, the lower the turbopump weight is likely
to be. Once the pump speed is determined,
turbine type, turbine driving arrangement,
and turbine power source are selected
on the basis of
efficiency,
weight, simplicity,
and other factors.
Propellant
Properties
General data for some propellants
used in
liquid rocket engines
are given in tables
1-3 to
1-5. Table 6-8 lists those properties
of commonly used liquid propellants
which have specific significance
in the design of pumps These
propellants
include Earth-storable
liquids such
as RP-1 and N204, cryogenics
such as LO2 and
LH2, and liquids having a wide range of physical
and chemical
properties.
The low temperature
of cryogenic
liquids
creates problems with turbopump construction
materials,
seals, bearings, lubricants,
and through
the danger of ice formation
The total temperature range to which the structural
elements
of a
cryogenic
turbopump may be exposed varies from

DESIGN OF LIQUID

188

TABLE

6-3,-Fluid

PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

Properties of Commonly

Used

Liquid Propellants

aData at normal conditions


Conversion
Liquid

Temper-I
ature,
F

Vapor
pressure,
psia

Density,
lb/ft a

factors

Head, ft
Pressure,
psi

N204

60
60
60
60

1t.1
026
.158
031

60
60
60
-297.6
-307
-4229
-320.4
60

.62
183
1.77
14.7
14.7
147
14.7
.256

....................................

H202(90 percent) ............................


N2H ( .......................................
RP-I ......................................
Ethyl-alcohol
(95 percent) .....................
UDMH ....................................
50 percent UDMH,,'N2H 4 .....................
LO: .......................................
LF 2 .......................................
L]'],

......................................

b_
LI

2 ......................................

bWatet

.....................................

90.7
87.8
63.3
508 (max)
. 49.8 (rain)
504
49.66
5666
71.17
94.21
4.43
50.44
62.37

Viscosity,
lb-sec/sqin

gpm
lb/sec

4.96
5.12
7.12
8.84(rain)
9.00(max)
8.91
9.06
7.94
6.32
4.79
101.5
8.92
7.2

1.59
1.64
2.28
2.83(min)
2 89(max)
2.85
2 90
2.54
2.02
1.54
32.5
286
2.31

0.637
1.868
1.49
3.22

* 10-r
_10-"
10-7
10 -7

2.22
,10-:
.842 _ 10-:
1.378 _ 10-7
.2765_10 -7
.353 x 10-:
.020810-:
.226 10-:
1.64
10-:

aNormal conditionsdo not necessarilyimply standardconditions,


iftank pressureshave been applied.
blncludedhere because thesefluidsare frequentlyused as pump calibration
media.

-300

to -430 F at the

at the

turbine.

ents

This

between

which

must

tural

the

various

turbopump

thermal

pins

permit

a cryogenic

pump

of a turbine

requires

devices

expansion

connecting

and
are

the
to

independ-

within

of a normal-temperature

of the

The

vapor

pressure

en_ne

fluences

total

the

inlet.

pump

head

The
lants

the

produce

versely
This
percent

as

is

The

and

shown

net

to the

of that

has

flow

and

of a pump

in the

a density

of other

per

density

dramatically

pressure

case

rise,

effect

the

rotation

passages

the

a liquid

seen
lower

will

proportion
with
that
pump

fluid

losses

losses

propellant

efficiency.

layers,

being
which

together
pump

direction,

set

pump,
up.
also

of the

constitutes
in a pump.
viscosity

This

of a pump.

in certain

viscosity

losses,

a high

rather

predominant.

of a centrifugal
flows

energy

is pre-

viscous

to a radial

to the

leakage
of the

are decreased,
flow

boundary

axial

which
As the

performance

impeller

friction

the

and

become
the

an

impeller

layer,

in secondary
with

is a minimum
below

where

flow

off rapidly.

in the

of the

in the

There

fall

of the

from

as

portion

pump.

effects

of the

cross-section

changes

drag

and

the

to

con-

fluids

surface

the

of

specific

pumped

the

forces

with

direct

requires

be reached

The

together

10

design

boundary

completely

is inof liquid

the

along

turbulent

results

than
For

dominantly

such

fluid.

Thus

impeller

will

unit

of the

of less

propellants.

head-

differences

required
rise

propel-

pumps.

clearances

a point
than

positive

pump

as large

power

pressure

which

weight

inlet

different

well

proportional

hydrogen

discussed

of different

substantially

flow.

flow

be further

at

compared

performance

passage

in-

requirements

pump

variations

requirements,

weight

will

under

directly

(NPSH).

density

in volume

pressure

This
with

propellants

conditions

suction

in conjunction
suction

of the

operation

10 times

as

of the

passages

than

power

viscosity
layer

size

more

driving

pumps

boundary

pump

normal

same

propellant

The

employed

requires

and

liquid
hydrogen
siderations.

contraction.

often

pump
flow

other

pump.

rise

hydrogen
volume

struc-

to permit

to contract

and/or

F
gradi-

components

and

or suitable

Radial

ently

to 1200%1700
temperature

be accommodated

flexibility

required

pumps
induces

This,
are

in

fluid,

a major
It is
tends

to

189

DESIGNOF TURBOPUMPPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

Some liquid propellants,


such as LF 2 and
4, are highly
reactive
chemically,
and thermally unstable,
beyond certain temperature
limits.
In the design of turbopumps
for these propellants,
special consideration
must be given to
the selection
of compatible
materials
as well as
to the construction
of mechanical
parts.
Seals,
bearings,
and the protection
(insulation)
of the
pump section against
heat influx from the turbine
section following engine shutdown,
are typical
problem areas.
N2H

Pump Developed

Heads and Flow Rates

The term "pump developed


head," AH (ft), is
defined as the difference
between pump discharge head and pump suction head. The relationship
between developed
fluid pressure
Ap
(psi) and fluid head AH (ft) is given by

curves is thus obtained experimentally


for the
range of speeds through which the pump may
operate, all of them having similar parabolic
shape.
Typical H-Q curves of a pump at various
speeds are shown in figure 6-19, along with the
system flow resistance
curve.
Together
they
form the design operating
range of a system.
Two dimensionless
coefficients
are frequently
used to indicate
the head and flow characteristics of a given pump. They are the pump head
coefficient
0 and the pump flow coefficient
_5.
The pump head coefficientis the ratioof rated
pump head (ft)to the maximum theoreticalhead
at zero flow formeridional(axial)inlet(no prerotation)expressed as
AH

(6-4)

g
144xAp(lb

_
\in2/

AH (ft)=

(6-3)

where
g,

Fluid

density

l(f___)

The required pump developed


head at the design propellant
flow rate (i.e., engine thrust
level) is dictated
by the sum of the hydraulic
resistances
within the engine propellant
flow
system.
These resistances
include the pressure
drops across injector,
thrust chamber manifold,
cooling jacket, propellant
valves and ducts, as
well as the injector end thrust chamber pressure.
An additional
pressure
margin is usually allowed
for systems
calibration.
An engine propellant
flow system hydraulic
resistance
curve representing the resistance
head to flow-rate relationship at various pump operating
levels is shown
in figure 6-19.
Any value for developed
fluid head of a given
pump is tied to a corresponding
level of fluid
flow at any impeller rotating
speed.
At the maximum flow rates, the entire pump drive energy is
consumed by internal
flow losses and kinetic
energy imparted to the fluid.
Thus the measured
head rise at the pump outlet is zero. At the
other extreme,
where fluid flow is zero (except
for secondary
flows), head rise is a maximum.
A
pump developed
head versus flow capacity curve,
commonly called H-Q curve, is derived by connecting the pump operating
points between the
two extremes
for constant
speeds.
A family of

=overall
pump head coefficient
at rated design point (range is 0.2 to 0.7 for single
stage centrifugal
pumps and up to 1.5 to
2.0 for multistage
axial pumps, depending on number of stages)
AH=pump rated developed
head, ft
u 2 =mean tip velocity
of pump impeller at rated
design rotating speed, ft/sec
g =gravitational
constant,
32.2 ft/sec 2
The pump flow coefficient
can be expressed
as
CrD2

=--

(6-5)

U 2

f-ENGINE
SYSTEM

PROPELLANT
HYORAULIC

FLOW
RESISTANCE

CURVE
r-PUMP

//

H-O

,_IO%RATED
CHARACTERISTIC DESIGN
CURVE

DESIGN

POINT-"

'
I

t
O Des
PUMP

Figure

FLOW

RATE,

Q,

gDm

6-19.-Engine
system resistance
characteristic
curves.

and pump

190

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLANT

where
6

=overall
pump flow coefficient
at rated design point (range 0.01 to 0.15 in rocket
engine application)
cm2 =velocity
of pump flow in meridional
direction
at rated design point, ft/sec
Rated

pump flow,

=discl_,;',:'ge area
rection,
ft 2

normal

flow rate

varies

di-

directly

QI _N1
Q_ N_
(2) Pump developed
head varies
the square of the speed:

(6-6a)

directly

as

(6-6b)

(3) Pump driving power


cube of the speed:

varies

hp I

N_3

hp 2

N23

(6-7)

where
to meridional

Pump Specific Speeds


For any given pump design, the relation between fluid flow rate Q, developed
fluid head
,AH, required driving power hp, and rotating
speed N can be defined by three expressions
called the affinity laws of a pump. These laws
state:
(1) Pump volume
with speed:

relationships
established
in equations
(6-6b), and (6-6c) permit us to derive a
pump design parameter,
the pump specific
Ns:
Ns : N(Q)3
(AH) o-Ts

ft3/sec

A2
A2

The
(6-6a),
useful
speed,

ROCKET ENGINES

directly

as a

(6-6c)

The affinity laws are based on the assumption


that the pump efficiency
is independent
of the
rotating speed.
Actual pump operation has
shown, however, that pump efficiency
does
change with speed.
The degree depends on the
individual
pump design, but is usually not more
than 2 or 3 percent within a reasonable
range
from the rated design point.
Furthermore,
it
affects only the power requirements
rather than
the relationship
between developed
head and
flow rate.
Thus the pump affinity laws hold
quite well in most cases.

Ns : pump specific
speed (dimensionless)
N :pump rotating speed, rpm
Q =pump flow rate, gpm
_H :- pump developed
head, feet
Pump specific
speed is a characteristic
value
defined as the rpm required to produce 1-gpm
flow at 1-foot head rise across the pump impeller
(or across the combination
of inducer and impeller).
In pump design, this term is very useful
to classify
inducers or impellers
on the basis of
their performance
and geometric
proportions
regardless
of the actual size or speed at which
they operate.
Ns is a function of design configuration;
it does not vary significantly
for a
series of geometrically
similar impellers
(having
the same angles and proportions),
or for one
particular
impeller operating
at any speed.
Since the H-Q characteristic
curve of a pump
ranges from zero flow at shutoff to zero head at
maximum flow, the specific
speed for one curve
varies from zero to infinity.
To make the term
definite,
it is necessary
to relate it to a defined
condition.
The logical point is that of maximum
efficiency,
usually the rated design point.
It is
generally
understood
that this point is meant
when specific
speed is stated.
Figure 6-20 indicates
typical pump specific
speeds for various impeller geometries.
For a
given speed, a low value of specific
speed is
characteristic
for low-volume
flow, high-headrise pumps.
Higher specific
speed indicates
a
higher volume flow, low-head-rise
pump.
1. Radial-type
impeller.-The
head is largely
developed
by the action of centrifugal
force.
This type is used for heads above 200 feet.
Specific speed ranges from 500 to 1200. Geometric proportion,
r2/r 1, varies from 2 to 3.
2. Francis-type
impelier.-This
type has an
axial inlet, a radial discharge,
and is used for
lower heads.
Specific speed ranges from 1200 to
2400. Geometric
proportion,
r 2/q , varies from
1.3 to 1.8.

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMP PROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

191

Since 1 ft3/sec= 449 gpm


Oxidizer

---.o}
l._w
F
11 __0

Figure
specific

J&$1(:

IOI[LL|R

TYPt

6-20.-Relationship
speeds
and pump

( .....

Qo = 1971 x 449/71.38

between
impeller

the pump
geometries.

3. Mixed-flow
type impeller.-The
head developed in this impeller is due partly to change in
tangential
velocity
and partly to change in fluid
velocity
relative
to the rotor.
The discharge
is
partly radial and partly axial.
The impeller
vanes are doubly curved.
Specific speed varies
from 2200 to 3500,
4. Propeller-type
impeller.-The
head developed by this type is through push of the vanes
only. Flow direction
is axial.
Specific
speeds
range from 3000 to 6000 for multistage
impellers,
and from 6000 to 12 000 for inducers.

Calculation

From equation

pump specific

55
45

1505
1720

the pump specific

speeds.

pump developed

pressure,

1971
892

7000
7000

Solution
Oxidizer

Ap= 1505-55=
From equation
Oxidizer

1450 psi

(6-3):

pump developed

7000 x (12 420) s


(2930) -Ts

Fuel

pump developed

7000 111.7
- 1980
395

pressure,
Ap= 1720-45=

From equation

1675 psi

(6-3):

Fuel pump developed

head,
AH= 144 x 167_-=
4790_
50.45

Fluid Pump inlet Pump


Pump Pump
suction dischargeweight speed,
ideasity' pressures, pressure, flowrate,
rpm
Ib/ft3psia(total)psia
Ib/sec

Determine

speed,
Ns =

Fuel

pump volume

head,
AH =

144 1450
- 2930 ft
71.38

Fuel pump specific

ft

flow rate,
Qi= 892 x 449/50.45

From equation

Oxidizer.71.38
Fuel...
50.45

= 12 420 gpm

(6-7):

(6-2)

The following data are given for the propel1ant pumps of the hypothetical
A-1 stage engine
at the rated design point:

Pump

flow rate,

mG_
F_W
Nm=IZ1300

Oxidizer

Sample

pump volume

= 7960

(6-7):

speed,

Ns-

7000 x (7960) s
(4790) .rs
=.7000 x.89:1 = 1083
576

Pump Net Positive


Suction Head; Cavitation
Steady flow operation
of a pump creates
a
low-pressure
area at the pump inlet, thus allowing the static head upstream of the pump to push
fluid into the inlet at a continuous
rate.
There
are local regions within the pump which are at
static pressures
even lower than the inlet static
pressure.
If the static pressure
of the fluid at
the pump inlet or any regions within the pump is
allowed to drop below the local fluid vapor pressure level, these regions will cavitate;
i.e., the
fluid will pass from liquid to vapor and form
bubbles.
The formation of vapor alters the effective flow passages
of the fluid and hence seriously affects normal pump performance.
The

192

DESIGN

OF

LIQUaD

PROPELLANT

subsequent
collapse
of these vapor regions creates local pressure
forces which can result in
flow instabilities
and/or substantial
damage.
To avoid cavitation
during operation
of a propellant pump, the pump-inlet available
net positive suction head, (NPSH)a, furnished
by the
propellant
feed system upstream of the pump,
must be higher than the suction head above the
propellant
vapor pressure
at which cavitation
would set in. (NPSH)a is the difference
between
the propellant
inlet total pressure
head and the
propellant
vapor pressure.
This can be expressed
as:

ROCKET

ENGINES

/--CURVE
OF
CRrTICAL
NET
,/
POSITIVE
SUCTION
HEAD

laJ
H
DES-

C_

I:'ERCENT
,

"r

J__'_

RAI'ED

RATED

Pt 144
P

Api 144
+ Z- -P

pv 144
P

FLOW

DESIGN

PERCENT

RATED

DESIGN

FLOW

(D
n

Q.

NET

(6-8)

FLOW

//x.

{ NPSH

(NPSH)a

DESIGN

POSITIVE. SUCTION

}C

HEAD

Figure 6-2I.-Typical
of a pump operated

DESIGN

AT THE

PUMP

INLET, FEEl

cavitation
characteristics
at rated design speed.

where
(NPSH)a

=available
ft

Pt
p
Z

= propellant
tank pressure,
psia
=density of propellant,
lb/ft 3
= height of propellant
above the pump
inlet and within the tank (corrected
in flight for vehicle acceleration
and gravity effects),
ft
= pressure
drop due to friction losses
within the propellant
suction ducts,
psi
=propellant
vapor pressure
for the propellant
temperature
at the pump
inlet, psia

Apt

Pv

net positive

suction

head,

In design practice
the term "critical
net positive suction head," or (NPSH)c, is used to indicate the minimum suction head required above
the propellant
vapor pressure
to assure
suppression of cavitation.
This critical
net positive
suction head is defined by convention,
as that
value which will result in a 2-percent
headgeneration
loss at the rated design speed and
flow rate of a given pump. Usually further reduction in inlet NPSH below the (NPSH)c point
results
in rapidly increasing
cavitation.
In turn,
the developed
head is further reduced,
and nonsteady flow can result.
This fluctuation
of propellant flow can cause erratic combustion
in the
thrust chamber.
Figure 6-21 represents
the
cavitation
characteristics
of a typical pump
operated
at rated design speed.
To insure a
margin of safety for pump operation,
the (NPSH)a

supplied
(NPSH)c

by the vehicle must be larger


of the propellant
pumps, or
(NPSH)a

than the

> (NPSH)c

(6-9)

It is useful to compare the suction characteristics of various pump designs on the basis of a
design parameter
called suction specific
speed,
Nss, which is defined as follows:

Nss -

N(Q)s
(NPSH)c _

(6-10)

where
: pump suction specific
speed
= pump rated design speed, rpm
= pump rated design volume flow rate,
gpm
(NPSH)c : pump critical net positive
suction
head, ft
Suction specific
speed is related to the critical net positive
suction head in the same manner
the specific
speed is related to overall pump
developed
head.
Design values of suction specific speeds for rocket propellant
pumps range
from 10 000 without inducers approximately
to
55 000 with inducers.
Nss

N
V

Another coefficient
describing
pump
characteristics
is the Thoma parameter
the ratio of critical
net positive
suction
(NPSH)c and rated pump developed
head

suction
r. It is
head
AH, or

(NPSH)c _ 1/ Ns _1.333
(6-11)

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMPPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

The Thoma parameter


is a function of pump design quality and specific
speed.
For a given vehicle (NPSH)a, the pump suction characteristics
(Nss) determine
the maximum
permissible
rpm at the design flow rate.
A high
pump Nss or vehicle (NPSH)a permits a higher
pump rpm, lower turbopump weight, and possibly
higher turbine performance.
It is desirable
to
operate a pump at the highest practicable
speed.
Figure 6-22 represents
the results
of a parametric turbopump system design study for a typical LO2/RP-1
booster stage rocket engine system, such as the A-1 stage engine.
The study
reflects
the effects of N, (NPSH)c, and Nss on
the selection
of turbopump configuration.
In addition to the pump (NPSH)c values during
steady-state
operation,
the engine starting
transient pump (NPSH)c must be determined
and
specified
to permit satisfactory
engine acceleration from zero to nominal design speed and flow
rate in the desired time and manner.
The start-

Pump

3xidizer..
_uel .....

Pump

3xidizer
Fuel ..

Determine

Sample

Solution

(6-3)

(a__)The following test data are given


propellant
pumps of the A-1 stage:

for the

Pump
Pump
Pump
Pump Fluid volume developed
speed,[
pumped flowrate, head, (NPSH)c'
rpm
gpm
ft
ft
7000
7000

12420
7960

LO_
RP-I

2930
4790

58
70

Determine
pump suction specific
speeds and
Thoma parameters.
(b_..)The following system design data are
given for the A-1 stage vehicle:

ing (NPSH)c depends on the rate of acceleration


and on the control system of the engine, as well
as on vehicle acceleration,
gravity effects,
and
propellant
suction duct geometry.
Therefore,
sufficient
tank pressure
must be provided to
accelerate
the propellant
and to overcome the
hydraulic
resistance
in the suction duct, as well
as to supply the necessary
pump (NPSH)c during
all phases of system operation.

Calculation

193

Longitu-apermanent[
dinal
static
Propellant
!distance
pressure
Fluid
Tank !between
loss in
temperdensity, pressure, tankand suction ature
lb/ft _
psia
pump
duct. atpum_
inlet,
inlet,
including
OF
R
valves, psi'
71.38
50.45

60
50

3.5
25

5
8

-297.6
60

aThe dynamic bead at the pump inlet is considered a


part of the available NPSH and thus is not subtracted from
the tank pressure.

the available

(a_) Substitute
Oxidizer

given

pump suction

NPSH at the pump inlets.

data

into equation

specific

(6-10):

speed,
7000 (12 420) os

( 't'_

Ns

STAP.d[$I

(58)o.;s
AIir_

TUPtOINE

_ 7000 x 111.7

"

= 37 230
Fuel

pump suction

specific

speed,
Nss - 7000 (7960) s
(70) o._

{ NPe_,I IC,, F'T

Figure 6-22.-Effects
or"N, (NPSH) c, and Nss on
turbopump configuration
selection
for a typical
LO2/RP-1

booster

stage

rocket

engine

system.

_ 7000 x 89.i
24.2
= 25 790

DESIGN OF LIQUID PROPELLAHT ROCKET ENGINES

194

Substitutegiven data intoequation (6-II):


Thoma

parameter

of the oxidizer

pump,
58
r = 2--9-_ = 0.0198

disk, which is relatively


minor, and (b) a pumping action on the fluid in contact with the disk,
whereby the fluid is circulated
locally by centrifugal action.
The energy loss due to disk
friction is transformed
into heat and can appreciably increase
the temperature
3. Mechanical
1osses.-These

Thoma

parameter

of the fuel pump,


7O
r =4_=0.0146

(b) From table


Vapor

pressure

Vapor

pressure

6-3:

of liquid

oxygen
= 14.7 psia

of RP-1 = 0.031

at -297.6 F

psia

at 60 c F

Assume the vehicleis at sea-levelholddown


conditionand substitutegiven data intoequation
(6-8):
Available NPSH at oxidizerpump inlet

(NPSH)a -

bearings
tion.

and seals

(60-5-14.7)
144 +3.5
71.38

at fuelpump inlet
(NPSH)a =

(50-S-0.031)
144 + 25
50.45

=120+25=145

ft

Pump Operational
Efficiency;
Losses
Several types of energy losses
occur during
pump operation which affect efficiency.
1. Hydraulic
losses.-These
include friction
losses in the passages
and flow turbulence
losses.
The friction losses are a function of the
"wetted areas" in the passages
and of the roughness of their surfaces.
The turbulence
losses
are caused by disturbances
in certain regions of
the pump, such as at the inlet and outlet edge of
the vanes of both impeller and diffuser and in
the return guide vanes.
2. Disk friction losses.-The

energy

required

to rotate a disk, such as an impeller or inducer,


in a fluid is known as disk friction loss.
The
disk friction losses
are due to two actions:
namely,

(a) the actual

friction

of the fluid on the

by mechanical

in

fric-

4. Leakage Iosses.-To
prevent the pumped
fluid from leaking back to the suction side after
it has passed the impeller and is at outlet pressure levels,
close-clearance
labyrinth-type
seals
or wearing rings are provided.
Leakback
lowers
the flow capacity
of a pump and thus increases
required pumping power.
For a new design,
losses are difficult
to predict and are usually estimated
from data derived
during actual testing and other past experience
with similar designs.
The overall efficiency
of a pump, r/p, can be
expressed
by the ratio of pump fluid horsepower
output, fhp, to brake horsepower
input by the
pump drive, bhp:
fl_p
_P = bhp

=81.5+3.5=85ft
Available NPSH

caused

of the fluid.
are losses

(6-12)

The pump fluid horsepower


flip is the actual
usable output delivered
by the pump. It is the
product of delivered
propellant
weight flow, _i,p
(lb/sec),
times the actual head AH(ft) developed
by the pump, divided by a conversion
factor:

(_p,_H
fhp = 550

(6-13)

The brake horsepower


bhp represents
the mechanical
horsepower
delivered
to the pump by the
drive.
This delivered
brake horsepower
is consumed in the pump as fluid horsepower
and as
the various losses.

bhp:

fhp + (hp)h + (hp)df + (hp)m + (hp)l (6-14)

where
bhp
fhp
(hp)h

= brake horsepower
= fluid horsepower
= horsepower
required
draulic losses

to overcome

hy-

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMP

(hP)dt=

horsepower

required

friction
(hp)m
(hp)l
The

the

to overcome

=horsepower

required

to overcome

in the

Q, the

speed

pump

rate

or capacity

nite

trend

capacities,

tion,

and

is

the

of the

of the

Ns.

pump.

are

hand,

increased

pump-developed

lower
ti6n

efficiency
and

ciency

being

for a pump
mechanical

of rocket

Of these,
volume

There

because

with

engine

rate

and

the

head,

The

specific

is

the

shown

correlation

following

and

6-23.

between

pump

parameters:
required

for a typical

centrifugal

Sample

Calculation

(6-4)

following

propellant

of
Figure
flow
devel-

brake

horse-

pump.

pumps

test

data

of the

A-1

are

given

stage

for the

engine:

when

On the
and

capacity

other
Pump

results
disk

overall

Fluid

rotatfric-

Oxidizer...
Vuel .......

effi-

pumps

"

Pump volumel

pumped

in
LO 2
RP-1

flow rate,
gpm

Pump

Drive shaft

developed
head, ft

power, hp

2930
4790

14 850
11 790

12 420
7960

of high

..
_

.[
_

III, ._...

I -7"

!_:L:

Z
I,U

tL
U.
t_

I000

aO00

VALUES
Figure

lower

at various

in figure

power,

The

fric-

ql. dl, ,wll _

_0

from

variation

speed,

three

efficiency,

ranges
10 percent

a smaller

head

propellant

higher

disk

horsepower

The

shows

pumps.

with

capacities,

6-24

speed

is about

the
flow

of increased

losses.

rotating

This

of industrial

D5

b.]
tD
e,W
r,

and

efficiency

oped

is a defi-

handled.

of given

and

included

represent

brake

capacities

speed

AH,

are

hydraulic,

losses
total

head

that

pump

to the

efficiency

because

large

ing

leak-

head

design

increased

mechanical

percentage

related

of which

speed

one

toward

pump

is

developed

N, all

specific

important

than
pump

of a pump

rate

most

me-

loss

efficiency

rotating

developed

195

SYSTEMS

60 to 85 percent.

required
losses

flow

disk

losses

=horsepower
chanical

age

volume

to overcome

PROPELLANT-FEED

6-23.-Variation

$000

OF SPECIFIC SPEED, NS:


_f pump

elliciency

4000

IO, O00

RPM,
H 3/4
with

specilic

speed.

(5,000

DESIGN OF LIQUID

196

Determine

PROPELLANT

ROCKET ENGINES

Turbine

the overall efficiencies _p of both

pumps.

The
fined

Solution

overall
as

output,
Substitute
sample

given

calculation

data

and

flow

rates

(6-2)

into

equation

from

the

Performance

rate,

Oxidizer

pump

fluid

and

Operating

hp

horsepower

turbine

In general,

turbine
per

per

working-fluid

second

or

thp (hp/lb/sec)
vvt

8924790
550

overall
-7760

the

of turbine

turbine

The

hp

overall

variables:

pound

pound
equation

is de-

horsepower

performance

turbine

two

fluid

performance

depends

energy

working-fluid,

AHt,

efficiency,

energy
fluid

as

of the

the

in the

content
and
turbine

enthalpy

drop

pump

overall

per

turbine

(6-12):
AH t=H o- H e

Oxidizer

the

7/t.

content

is defined

of working

(6-15)

available

operating

available

working

into

required

#vt, in pounds

z--

1971 2930
550
- 10500

fhp-

Substitute

and

shaft

(6-13):

upon
fluid

of a turbine

of turbine

horsepower

fhp-

pump

performance
ratio

thp,

flow
Overall

Fuel

Overall

Efficiency

(6-16)

efficiency
where
10500
9P=14

850

=70.7%

AHt---available
fluid,

energy
Btu/lb

H o = enthalpy
Fuel

pump

overall

7760
_p=]-_-_=6a.8_

efficiency

fluid
He

per

PUMP
PUMP

DEVELOPED

HEAD H, FEET

EFFICIENCY _p, PERCENT


REQUIRED POWER, Bhp

Using

equations

(6-16)

can

weight

per

unit

(1-10)

AHt=Cp(T-

working

of the

working

of the

pressure,

isentropic

be rewritten

of the

Btu/lb

weight

at exhaust

suming
PUMP

unit

at turbine-inlet,

= enthalpy
fluid

content

working

Btu/lb,

as-

expansion
and

(1-13),

equation

as

Te)=CpT

_(Pe_
\Po/

Y /-I
)'='
J

(6-17)

where
DEVELOPED

HEAD

Cp:working
fluid
specific
pressure,
Btu/'lb-F

RATED
DES

IGN

/'-

COND TION
I

EFFICIENCY

T o = working

inlet,

fluid
fluid

exhaust,
Po =working

y
Figure

6-24.-H-Q,

characteristic
pump.

e[ficiency,
curves

o[ a

and required
typical

power

centrilugal

=working
ratio

P_,/P2,
ratio
turbine

Rt,

temperature

at turbine

total

pressure

at turbine

fluid

be

which
design.

static

pressure

at turbine

psia

of turbine

can

static

fluid

exhaust,

The

at turbine

psia

Pe = working

Q, gpm

temperature

R
fluid

inlet,

FLOWRATE

at constant

Te = working

PUMP

total

heat

specific
inlet

expressed
is

heat
and
as

a frequently

ratio

exhaust
the

pressures,

turbine
used

pressure

parameter

in

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMP

17

(6-18)

AH_--CpTo

PROPELLANT-FEED

perature is offset by the turbine efficiencylosses


(blade losses; see below) resulting from higher
gas

jet

speed

(spouting

proportional
It is seen
turbine
ties

that

working

and

inlet

pressure

the

ratio.

Most

engine

uct

generated

Typical

and

of the
by

fluid

of the

are

are

fluids
prod-

6-25

shows

the

listed

fluid,

relationship

temperature

and

in

fluid

for a turbine

pressure

energy

propellant

LO2/LH
ited

2.

by

the

turbine
sign

combinations

Turbine

inlet

limit

levels

the

is around

1700 F.

gain

a higher

of 20

for

lim-

available

again

for the

combinations

and

LO2/LH

propellant
2.

may

the
cannot

as

ratio

the

6-4.-Properties

engine

pressure

ratio

Typical

Product

turboof a

used.

of a turbine,

of turbine

77t, is

shaft

horsepower,

de-

2O00

certain

turbine-inlet

of

Combustion

of the

on rocket

be fully

efficiency

it efficiently

because

available

overall

in a working

to convert

horsepower

limitations

Thus

a large

be available

be difficult
shaft

Although

tern-

_" 1#00
E_

TABLE

of

temperature

often

defined

between
energy

for a turbine-inlet

weight

The

is

fluid

it may

turbine

which

of the

A practical
Above

relationship

and

turbine

pumps.

and

are

properties

materials.

from

ratio

LO2/RP-I

the

ratio

of energy

severe

working

temperatures

high-temperature

construction

between

available

shows

LO_/RP-1
amount

Co)

temperature.

6-26

of 1200 F,

combustion.

velocity

turbine-inlet

pressure

working

into

turbine-inlet
two

turbine
the

working

bipropellant
properties

turbine

fuel-rich

to the

Figure

proper-

6-4.

Figure

the

in the

of gas

turbine

application

working

table

energy

is a function

temperature,

for rocket
gases

available

fluid

197

SYSTEMS

Fuel-Rich

-r
<:1 12oo
>.

Gases

ul

.oo
Inlet
temper- Btu/
Cp,
ature
ibF
F

Fluid

LOX/RP-1

.........

N20(/CH,(UDMH)

LOX/LH 2 .........

1100
1150
1200
1250
1300
1350
1400

..

0.635
.639
.643
.646'
.648
.651
.653

1.097
i.i00
1.106
1.111
1.115
1.119
1.124

1450
1500
1550
1600
1650
1700

.655_1 1.128
.6571 1.132
.659 1.137
.660 1.140
.661 1.144
.662 1.148

1400
1500
1600
1700
1800
1900

.380
.398
.416
.434
.452
.470

R,
Mixtur_
ratio,
ft/R
O/F

43.3
45.1
47.1
58.6
50.4
51.8
53.6

0.308
.320
.337
.354
.372
.390
.408

55.4
58.0
59.0
60.7
62.4
64.0

.425
.443
.460
.478
.497
.516

1.420
87.5
1.420
91.6
1.420
95.7
1.420
999 !
1.420, 104.0:
1.4201108.21

.lt0
.165
.220
.274
.328
.382

1000
1200
1400

2.05
1.94
1.86

1.374 434
1.3641 403
1.3541 378

.785
.903
1.025

1600
1800
2000

1.80
1.73
1.69

1.343
1.333
1.322

1.143
1.273
1.410

358
336
320

,<

4oo

.<

IOO_

1200

1100

TURBINE

Figure

6-25.-Effect
on working

1300
INLET

_4OO

1500

TEMPERATURE,

I_00

1700

of turbine-inlet
temperature
fluid available
energy.

2O00

tOX/U41

12OO

g
Z

.I
o
Figure

6-26.-Effect
working

fluid

;2

,;

PRESSURE

RATIO

2'o

of turbine

pressure

available

energy.

==

;,
ratio

on

198

DESIGNOF LIQUID PROPELLANT ROCKET ENGINES

thp, to enthalpy drop rate or the available


delivered
rate of the working fluid.
550 thp

energy

thp

Also, centrifugal
action of the rotor flisk causes
some of the gas to flow radially to the casing
and to be dragged along the face of the casing
by the rotor blades.
5. Mechanical
losses.-These
result from the
mechanical
seals.

Combining
Turbine

equations

overall

(6-15)

and (6-19):

performance

_7?tAHt_

7ItCpT

O.7O7

1 -_(6-20)

0.7O7

In turbine

operation

efficiency

I.

losses.-Similar

can be affected

byNozzle

to those

in thrust

chamber nozzles,
these losses
are due to the gas
leaving the nozzle at a lower velocity
as compared to that of an ideal nozzle.
The losses are
due to flow turbulence,
fluid friction,
and loss of
heat to and through the turbine nozzle blocks.
2. Blade losses.-These
are caused by residual velocity
of the gas as it leaves the rotor
blades, the obliquity
of the nozzle (i.e., the
nozzle angle 0 in fig. 6-8 cannot be made zero),
flow turbulence,
and fluid friction.
Losses
due
to residual
gas velocity
can be reduced by optimizing the turbine blade-to-gas
velocity ratio
U/Co, where U is the pitch speed of the rotor
blades, and C o is the ideal spouting
velocity of
the gas based on available
energy and isentropic
expansion.
These conditions
can be analyzed
quantitatively
by means of turbine gas flow
velocity diagrams
which will be discussed
in
section
6.5. Flow turbulence
can be reduced
through
turbine

improved blade shape


nozzle admission.

and through

of gas and rotor disk

in bearings

and rotating

The design of turbines for rocket turbopumps


tends toward the simpler and lighter impulse
types, with most of the expansion
occurring
in
the stationary
elements.
Figure 6-27 shows the
typical efficiency
curves of various impulse-type
turbines.
The design problem becomes
one of
balancing
efficiency
(optimum velocity ratio
U/Co, weight (number of stages or rows), and
structural
considerations.
A higher performance
can be achieved by employing a working fluid
with high available
energy, and by matching its
high gas spouting velocity
Co with a high rotor
blade pitch speed U. However, the blade speed
is often limited by the required pump rpm, by the
practical
size of the rotor wheel, and by the
strength of materials.
The optimum velocity
ratio (or optimum value of blade speed for a
given gas spouting velocity)
is reduced by the
use of velocity
or pressure-compounded
arrangements (shown schematically
in fig. 6-9 and 6-10).
However, these designs increase
weight and
complexity.
In general, for a direct-drive
configuration
(fig. 6-13) with an rpm lower than ideal, a low
value of U/Co results, and a velocity compounded
turbine will be used because of its low overall
weight

and simplicity.

Where a reduction

gear

is

I00

_-_

PllSSUR_

tOM P OU_,C_D

full

3. Leakage or clearance
losses.-The
clearante required between rotor blade tips and casing permits some gas to leak past the blades
without doing work, thus causing energy losses.
The gas leakage
from stage to stage in a multistage pressure-compounded
turbine due to required clearance
between shaft and sealing
diaphragm results
in similar losses.
4. Disk friction losses.-Fluid
friction occurs
at the interface

friction

surface.

2(

i
01
OVERALL

Figure

(1.2
ISENTROPIC

6-27.-Typical
impulse-type

G.3
VELOCITY

04
RATIO-

efficiency
turbines.

05

O.6

U/Co

curves

of

DESIGN OF TURBOPUMPPROPELLANT-FEED SYSTEMS

provided between pumps and turbine, a higher


value of U/Co is possible
and a more efficient
pressure-compounded
turbine can be used.
Since the turbine pressure
ratio has only a
small effect upon available
energy content of the
working fluid (fig. 6-26), the power level of a
turbine is usually regulated
by controlling
the
inlet pressure
Po and in turn the flow rate wt of
the turbine.

Sample

Calculation

(6-5)

Total shaft horsepower


required
(sample calculation
(6-4)):

by the pumps

14 850 + 11 790-- 26 640 hp


Thus a margin of 510 hp is available
for auxiliary
drives and contingencies.
Substitute
the values for thp, AHt, and _
into equation
(6-19):

Overall

The following test data are given for the


turbine of the A-1 stage engine turbopump:
Turbine gas mixture ratio, LO2/RP-1
= 0.408
Gas total temperature
at turbine-inlet,
T O= 1860 R (1400 F)
Gas total pressure
at turbine-inlet,
Po = 640
psia
Gas static pressure
at turbine exhaust,
Pe = 27
psia
Turbine gas flow rate, ti,t= 92 lb/sec
Turbine shaft speed, 7000 rpm
Turbine shaft torque, 20 380 ft-lb
Determine
the overall turbine efficiency
in percent and the performance
in horsepower
per
lb/sec
of turbine flow _t.

199

turbine

efficiency

r/t -

0.707 27 150
92 x 359

=58.2%
From equation

Overall

turbine

(6-15):

performance

Turbopump System

Cycle

27 150
9_
=295

hp
lb/se_

Efficiency

Turbopump system cycle efficiency


is an
indicator
of the energy losses and their effect on
overall engine syst