Steven Son

Steven Son (By Courtesy)

Alfred J. Mcallister Professor of Mechanical Engineering


B.S. Brigham Young, '89
M.S. Brigham Young, '89
Ph.D. University of Illinois, '93


Office: 130 Chaffee Hall, Zucrow Labs
Office Phone: (765) 494-8208
Office Fax: (765) 494-0539


  • Multiphase combustion, particularly related to propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics
  • Nanoscale composite energetic materials
  • Advanced energetic materials
  • Microscale combustion

Research Areas

My research group is primarily interested in a wide range of fundamental energetic materials (propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics) research areas. We focus on state-of-the-art dynamic experimentation and creating novel reactive materials. We develop or apply the most advanced diagnostics often applied in harsh reacting environments to develop improved understanding and characterization. We also seek to develop tailored disruptive energetic materials with unique properties. Ultimately our research aims to improve the performance, safety, or toxicity of energetic materials. We also have interest in energy topics, including coal combustion and hydrogen storage. More information can be found at:


M. A. Pfeil, J. D. Dennis, S. F. Son, S. D. Heister, T. L. Pourpoint, and P. V. Ramachandran, “Characterization of Ethylenediamine Bisborane as a Hypergolic Hybrid Rocket Fuel Additive,” Journal of Propulsion and Power, Vol. 31(1) pp. 365-372 (2015).

R. R. Nellums, S. F. Son, and L. J. Groven, “Preparation and Characterization of Aqueous Nanothermite Inks for Direct Deposition on SCB Initiators,” Propellants, Explosives, and Pyrotechnics, 39 (3), pp. 463-470 (2014).

K. Y. Cho, A. Satija, T. L. Pourpoint, S. F. Son, and R. P. Lucht, "High-Repetition-Rate Three-Dimensional OH Imaging Using Scanned Planar Laser-Induced Fluorescence System for Multiphase Combustion," Applied Optics, Vol. 53(3), pp. 316-326 (2014).

S. Isert, L. J. Groven, R. P. Lucht, and S. F. Son, “The Effect of Encapsulated Nanosized Catalysts on the Combustion of Composite Solid Propellants,” Combustion and Flame, Online version available (2014).

R. S. Janesheski, L. J. Groven and S. F. Son, “Detonation Failure Characterization of Homemade Explosives,” Propellants, Explosives, and Pyrotechnics, 39 (4), pp. 609-616 (2014)

J. O. Mares, J. K. Miller, I. E. Gunduz, J. F. Rhoads, and S. F. Son, “Heat Generation in an Elastic Binder System with Embedded Discrete Energetic Particles due to High-Frequency, Periodic Mechanical Excitation,” Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 116 (20), p. 204902 (2014).

S. F. Son, A. J. Zakrajsek, E. J. Miklaszewski, J. L. Wagner, and D. R. Guildenbecher, “Experimental Investigation of Blast Mitigation for Target Protection,” (Book Chapter) in Blast Mitigation: Experimental and Numerical Studies, A. Shukla, et al. Eds., (2014).

M. E. Daily, B. B. Glover, S. F. Son, and L. J. Groven, “X‐Band Microwave Properties and Ignition Predictions of Neat Explosives,” Propellants, Explosives, Pyrotechnics, Vol. 38(6), pp. 810-817 (2013).

C. D. Yarrington, L. J. Groven, R. V. Reeves, S. F. Son, "The Effect of Doping on the Combustion and Reaction Kinetics of Silicon Reactives," Combustion and Flame, Vol 160(9), pp. 1835–1841 (2013).

R. A. Yetter, G. A. Risha, and S. F. Son, "Metal Particle Combustion and Nanotechnology," Proceedings of the Combustion Institute, Vol. 32, pt.2, p.1819-1838, 2009.