Hypergolic Propellants Laboratory
The Hypergolic Propellants Lab's research focuses on hypergolic propellant ignition and combustion through system level testing and advanced diagnostic techniques. A major emphasis is on novel hypergolic propellant combinations.
This setup performs drop tests with Mixed Oxides of Nitrogen at pressures up to 100 psia. We control the oxidizer's temperature using a cooling system that allows for tests at pressures lower than the vapor pressure of the oxidizer used. This setup is currently used to investigate the reactivity and hypergolicity of solid and liquid additives with Nitrogen Tetroxide and MON-25.
Glove Box Characteristics
- Variable chamber pressure (up to 100 psia) supported
- Temperature-controlled oxidizer (down to -20°C)
- Nitrogen-purged dry box handles moisture/air sensitive compounds
- Optically accessible acrylic test environment
Current glove box configuration
Impinging Jet System
This setup provides highly repeatable electromechanically controlled tasks for the characterization of hypergolic ignition events and steady state analyses. The system has an array of nozzle and orifice inserts to provide variable mass flows and pressures. A programmable pulse mode is included for added versatility. Future plans include adding laser exhaust probing (PIV) to resolve specific impulse. Both atmospheric and pressurized combustion chambers (both optically accessible) are available to simulate diverse test environments. Four total configurations can be used: doublet/pressurized chamber, doublet/atmospheric chamber, triplet/pressurized chamber, triplet/atmospheric chamber.
Triplet injector is used for high O/F tests/operations. This configuration is used so that two streams of oxidizers impinge directly, canceling their momentum, while a fuel stream impinges from above. This keeps all momentum axial and improves mixing capabilities.
- 60° angle of injection system with max injection velocity of 160 ft/s
- Linearly actuated to provide ~3 ms to steady state injection conditions
- Measures ignition delay and combustion efficiency
- Max chamber pressure of 200 psi over a 3 second firing duration
- Testing with NTO via actively cooled propellant tanks and injectors
- Capture and dilute all exhausts/combustion products safely