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267–273, 2001

Mathematical Combustion

Model of a Two-Component Gas Suspension

Including a Powder Combustible and a Powder Oxidizer

UDC 536.46 D. A. Yagodnikov

1

and A. N. Bobrov

1

Translated from Fizika Goreniya i Vzryva, Vol. 37, No. 3, pp. 25–32, May–June, 2001.

Original article submitted October 25, 1999; revision submitted November 10, 2000.

A mathematical model of the ignition and combustion of aluminum and ammonium

perchlorate powders in a propulsion system that takes into account their polydisperse

distribution and the diﬀerence between the gas and disperse-phase velocities and tem-

peratures is developed. The eﬀect of the pressure, the ratios between the components,

and the dispersivity of aluminum particles on the structure of a gas-disperse ﬂame,

the basic characteristics of the combustion of a gas suspension, and the completeness

of propellant combustion is studied.

One direction of the development and updating of

propulsion systems and the development of gas-disperse

technologies is connected with the use of a gas suspen-

sion of the powder particles of a combustible and an ox-

idizer decomposed in a combustion wave as a working

body. The experimental studies [1–3] have shown the

possibility of occurring a stable working process in the

combustion chamber of a model propulsion system oper-

ating on the powder components of the propellant: alu-

minum + ammonium perchlorate (AP) and aluminum

+ polyethylene. For a comprehensive study of the spe-

ciﬁc features of the physicochemical interaction of a

powder combustible and a powder oxidizer under full-

scale conditions and also with the purpose to predict

the directions of subsequent experiments, a mathemati-

cal modeling directed to the determination of the char-

acteristics at which the stability of the working process

and the high degree of chemical-energy conversion in a

propulsion system operating on a two-component pow-

der propellant is needed.

The main goal of the present work is to develop

a mathematical model and an algorithm of calculating

the ignition and combustion parameters of a powder

combustible and a powder oxidizer, namely, aluminum

and ammonium perchlorate.

We consider separate stages of the combustible–

oxidizer interaction. At ﬁrst, the AP particles are gasi-

1

Bauman Moscow State Technical University,

Moscow 107005.

ﬁed owing to the heat and mass exchange with an igni-

tion source (special igniter or a return-ﬂow zone ﬁlled

with high-temperature combustion products). The

thermodynamic gasiﬁcation characteristics have been

examined in many studies (see, e.g., [4, 5]). In prac-

tice, the models with simpliﬁed mechanisms of decom-

position, according to which the process occurs par-

tially in a single-stage reaction with the formation of

ﬁnished products and it is also accompanied by disso-

ciative sublimation with subsequent combustion of NH

4

and HClO

4

in a primary ﬂame around an AP particle

have found wide applications. The eﬀective heats of the

reaction and the kinetic constants calculated with the

use of the combustion rate or the high-temperature de-

composition kinetics of pressed AP charges correspond

to each of these stages.

However, it is quite clear that the process of AP

gasiﬁcation in a gas-disperse ﬂow diﬀers from that in

a layer or pressed charge, and the diﬀerences can be

connected with the change in the conditions of particle

heating before the onset of gasiﬁcation, the possibility

of particle fragmentation which is due to the interre-

lation of the deformation of a particle in ﬂow and its

decomposition, the possibility of ﬂaming out a primary

ﬂame from the surface of a high-velocity AP particle,

etc. Therefore, as the ﬁrst approximation, we use the

data on the kinetics of AP decomposition published in

[6], because the conditions under which they were ob-

tained most closely correspond to those adopted for the

0010-5082/01/3703-0267 $25.00 c 2001 Plenum Publishing Corporation 267

268 Yagodnikov and Bobrov

given problem and take into account the pressure and

the particle size.

We now consider the main speciﬁc features of the

combustion of aluminum particles in the products of

AP decomposition. The existence of two interrelated

stages, namely, preﬂame heating (ignition) and vapor-

phase combustion, is common for the processes of in-

teraction of aluminum with diﬀerent oxidizing media.

In the case considered, the problem is complicated by

the fact that various parallel reactions of interaction

between aluminum and the products of AP decompo-

sition (O

2

, H

2

O, and Cl

2

) can occur. Therefore, the

use of generalized results which describe the combus-

tion time of aluminum particles in the composition of

an AP-based solid propellant versus the determining pa-

rameters seems to be justiﬁed.

In modeling of a two-phase ﬂow, it is necessary

to describe many physicochemical and thermal gas-

dynamic processes. In this formulation, being at the

boundary between gas dynamics and the theory of com-

bustion of disperse systems, the problem is extremely

complicated. In the present work, a one-dimensional

model solved in a two-continual formulation, when the

AP and aluminum particles can have the velocity and

the temperature diﬀerent from the corresponding char-

acteristics of the gas phase is proposed. It is assumed

that the AP and aluminum particles arrive at the reac-

tion zone with the same velocities, forming a gas sus-

pension in it.

Not dwelling on the commonly adopted assump-

tions in detail, we note the following. Since a rareﬁed

gas suspension is most often used in practice, we ignore

the contact interaction between the particles. The inter-

action of aluminum particles with an oxidizing medium

of complex composition occurs as a result of surface and

vapor-phase reactions. It is assumed in the work that

owing to the large content of oxidizing components in

the gas phase and also owing to the high initial tem-

perature of the gas (T

b

= 2400 K), which is equal to

the temperature in the return-ﬂow zone of the model

combustion chamber [3], the heating rate of a particle

to the ignition temperature exceeds the crystallization

rate of the oxide ﬁlm. Therefore, one can consider that

the ignition characteristics do not depend on the crystal

structure of the oxide ﬁlm.

With allowance for the said above and on the ba-

sis of an analysis of experimental data on the kinetics

of AP decomposition and the ignition and combustion

of aluminum particles, a mathematical model that de-

scribes the change in the temperature and radius of the

particles can be presented by the following system of dif-

ferential equations obtained from the complete-enthalpy

and particle-mass balance equations:

for aluminum,

dr

s

dt

=

_

¸

¸

¸

_

¸

¸

¸

_

−10

4

g exp

_

−

8500

T

s

_

, T

s

< 2300 K [7],

−2.2 · 10

−5

g

0.9

r

0.5

s

, T

s

= 2300 K [8],

(1)

dT

s

dt

=

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

3

r

s

c

s

ρ

s

_

−ρ

s

q

s

dr

s

dt

− Nuλ

T

s

−T

2r

s

+ε

s

σ(T

4

−T

4

s

)

_

, T

s

2300 K,

0, T

s

= 2300 K;

for ammonium perchlorate,

dr

p

dt

=

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

0 for T

p

< 600 K,

−3.3 · 10

−3

_

p

10

5

_

0.73

for

T

p

= 600 K, 10 r

p

80 µm [6],

−1.9 · 10

−3

_

p

10

5

_

0.82

for

T

p

= 600 K, 80 r

p

180 µm,

dT

p

dt

=

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

¸

¸

¸

¸

¸

_

3

r

p

ρ

p

_

−ρ

p

q

p

dr

p

dt

− Nuλ

T

p

−T

2r

p

+ε

p

σ(T

4

−T

4

p

)

_

for T

p

600 K,

0 for T

p

= 600 K.

Here c, r, and ρ (with subscripts) are the heat capacity,

radius, and density of a particle, respectively, λ is the

thermal conductivity, q is the thermal eﬀect of the reac-

tion, g is the relative mass concentration of the oxidizing

components, p and T are, respectively, the pressure and

temperature of the gas phase (the parameter without a

subscript characterizes the entire gas phase), Nu is the

Nusselt criterion, and ε and σ are the degree of emis-

sivity of the particle surface and the Stefan–Boltzmann

constant, respectively; the subscripts “s” and “p” refer

to aluminum and AP, respectively.

The thermal eﬀect of the reaction of aluminum–AP

interaction is taken to be equal to q

s

= 8.62 MJ/kg [8].

The thermal eﬀect of the reaction of AP decomposition

was calculated with the use of the diﬀerence between

the enthalpy of AP formation (∆H

p

= 588.7 kJ/kg)

and the enthalpy of the equilibrium composition of the

AP decomposition products (calculated by means of the

universal “Astra” code [9]) and it was approximated by

the polynomial:

q

p

= −0.0016T

2

p

+ 0.841T

p

+ 3323.9 kJ/kg.

Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer 269

Fig. 1. Particle number density.

The dynamic interaction of the phases was deter-

mined by the technique from [10] under the assumption

that the aerodynamic drag force prevails:

4π

3

d

dt

(ρr

3

u)

s,p

= f(u −u

s,p

)6πηr

s,p

,

f = 1 + 0.179Re

0.5

+ 0.013Re,

Re = |u

s,p

−u|2r

s,p

ρ/η,

Nu = 2 + 0.6Pr

0.33

Re

0.5

, Pr = ηc/λ.

Here c, u, ρ, and η is the heat capacity, velocity, den-

sity, and dynamic viscosity of the gas, respectively, and

u

s,p

is the particle velocity (of aluminum or AP). In the

present paper, the polyfractional gas suspension simu-

lated by the diﬀerential particle distribution γ(r

s,p

) is

considered. The forms of the distributions correspond

to the commercial powder aluminum (ASD-1 or ASD-

4) and AP (D-315) (Fig. 1). The known distribution

makes it possible to determine the total number of alu-

minum particles (N

s

) and AP particles (N

p

) from the

following relations:

N

s

=

_

i

γ(r

s,i

)r

3

s,i

4π

3

ρ

s

_

−1

m

0

s

,

N

p

=

_

j

γ(r

p,j

)r

3

p,j

4π

3

ρ

p

_

−1

m

0

p

.

Here m

0

is the initial total mass of the particles. The

subscripts i and j correspond to the fractions with a

ﬁxed initial radius of aluminum and AP particles, re-

spectively.

In the course of chemical reactions, the initial AP

and aluminum masses decrease with a simultaneous in-

crease in the degrees of burning-out. Mathematically,

this can be presented as follows:

• The masses of the nonreacted aluminum and AP

are

m

s

=

4π

3

ρ

s

N

s

i

γ(r

s,i

)r

3

s,i

,

m

p

=

4π

3

ρ

p

N

p

j

γ(r

p,j

)r

3

p,j

;

• The masses of the reacted aluminum and gasiﬁed

AP are

∆m

s

=

4π

3

ρ

s

N

s

i

γ(r

s,i

)[(r

0

s,i

)

3

−r

3

s,i

],

∆m

p

=

4π

3

ρ

p

N

p

j

γ(r

p,j

)[(r

0

p,j

)

3

−r

3

p,j

].

Here r

0

i

and r

0

j

are the initial radii of the aluminum and

AP particles (of the ith and jth fractions, respectively).

In the present paper, we use the model of averaged

one-dimensional ﬂow of the gas phase which is aﬀected

by the particles owing to point sources (outﬂows) of

mass and heat. Here the thermodynamic equilibrium

of the gas phase (over the entire two-component gas

suspension) in each cross section is assumed. The heat

capacities of the gas phase and solid particles are as-

sumed to be equal, which allows one to pass from equa-

tions for the enthalpy to equations for the temperature.

Since the initial temperature and the temperature of

the products of AP combustion are taken to be equal,

in correspondence with the heat-balance equation, the

temperature variation in the system in an elementary

cell is determined by the mass of the burned-out alu-

minum. It is assumed that the outﬂow of the gas-phase

mass (according to thermodynamic analysis, its compo-

sition does not almost vary) is connected with the sur-

face oxidation and burning-out of aluminum particles,

and the inﬂow is connected with AP combustion. In

270 Yagodnikov and Bobrov

Fig. 2. Flame parameters for ASD-1-based (a) and ASD-4-based propellants (b): curves 1–4 refer to T,

¯

G

s

, ϕ

Σ

, and α

t

, respectively, for α = 1.53 and p = 1 MPa.

Fig. 3. Change of the mass fraction of the c-phase along the ﬂow: (a) eﬀect of the pressure and dispersivity

of aluminum particles (α = 1.53): curve 1 refers to an ASD-1-based propellant for p = 1 MPa, curves 2 and

3 refer to an ASD-4-based propellant for p = 1 and 4 MPa, respectively; (b) eﬀect of the excess-oxidizer

coeﬃcient of an ASD-4-based propellant for p = 2 MPa and α = 0.5 (1), 1.53 (2), 3 (3), and 6 (4).

this connection, for the gas phase, the following system

can be written:

du

dt

=

4

πD

2

ρ

d

dt

(∆m

p

−K∆m

s

),

T = T

0

+ (T

∗

−T

0

)ϕ

s

, ρ =

p

RT(1 −z)

,

g =

_

g

0

− 1.9

∆m

p

m

0

s

+m

0

p

_

ϕ

p

, (2)

z =

m

p

+m

0

s

(1 −ϕ

s

+ 51/27ϕ

s

)

m

0

s

+m

0

p

,

α

t

=

∆m

p

(m

0

s

− ∆m

s

)K

.

Here z is the mass fraction of the c-phase, R is the gas

constant, D is the diameter of the combustion chamber,

K = 2.614 is the mass stoichiometric ratio of the com-

ponents, α

t

is the current value of the excess-oxidizer

coeﬃcient, and T

∗

is the adiabatic combustion temper-

ature; the superscript 0 corresponds to the initial values

of the parameters. The completeness of aluminum com-

bustion and the completeness of AP gasiﬁcation, which

enter (2), are calculated from the relations

ϕ

s

= 1 −m

s

/m

0

s

, ϕ

p

= 1 −m

p

/m

0

p

.

The total completeness of conversion of the chem-

ical energy of a propellant is determined on the basis

of the ratio between the values of the ﬂow-rate complex

obtained in this work and by means of the “Astra” code:

ϕ

Σ

= β/β

∗

[β =

_

RT(1 −z)/A(k)].

Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer 271

Fig. 4. Completeness of propellant combustion ver-

sus the pressure (α = 1.53): curves 1 and 2 refer to

ASD-4-based and ASD-1-based propellants, respec-

tively; solid curves refer to calculation, and dashed

curves to experiment [3].

Here

A(k) =

_

2

k + 1

_

1/(k−1)

_

2k

k + 1

= 0.641

is the parameter of a supersonic gas ﬂow calculated with

the use of the expansion parameter k = 1.16.

Systems (1) and (2) were solved by the ﬁnite-

diﬀerence method under the following initial conditions:

t = 0: u

s

= u

p

= u

0

, T = T

b

, T

s

= T

0

s

= 300 K,

T

p

= T

0

p

= 300 K, g

0

= 0.54.

The values of the thermophysical parameters of the

gas phase are taken from [11] for molecular oxygen and

they are approximated by polynomials as the functions

of temperature. The necessary physicochemical charac-

teristics of aluminum and AP are taken from [8]. In the

calculations, the SI system is used: p is in Pa, r

s,p

is in

m, T is in K, and t is in sec.

In the general case, the problem considered con-

tains many geometrical and regime parameters imme-

diately entering the mathematical model and some of

them, namely, the diameter of the combustion cham-

ber (0.07 m), the initial supply rates of the components

(4 m/sec), and the temperature in the return-ﬂow zone

(2400 K) are the same as in the experiments [3].

Figure 2 shows calculation results obtained for

the structure characteristics of the combustion zone of

D-315 AP and ASD-1 and ASD-4 aluminum powders.

The region ¯ x 0.1 is ﬁlled with a hot gas whose tem-

perature is T

b

= 2400 K, which corresponds to the

condition of continuous ignition of a mixture owing to

the heat exchange with a heat-release source, for exam-

ple, by the return-ﬂow zone, which were experimentally

recorded in [3].

Fig. 5. Combustion temperature versus the excess-

oxidizer coeﬃcient α (p = 0.5 MPa): curves 1 and

2 refer to ASD-4-based and ASD-1-based propellants,

respectively; points refer to the adiabatic combustion

temperature T

∗

.

The values of the initial velocity of aluminum and

AP particles (u

0

s,p

= 4 m/sec) correspond to the veloc-

ity of a carrying gas necessary for pseudoliquefaction

and supply of the powder propellant components to the

combustion chamber of a propulsion system. According

to the experimental data from [3], the mass ﬂow rate

of the carrying gas does not exceed 3–5% of the total

consumption of the propellant, and, hence, its inﬂuence

on the hydrodynamic characteristics of the ﬂow was ig-

nored. Thus, a gas suspension with a large content of

the c-phase enters the reaction zone (≈90%).

It is clear that, for the onset of ignition of the great

bulk of aluminum, it is necessary for have active oxidiz-

ing components in the gas phase. Precisely the presence

of such components as the products of AP decomposi-

tion specify the local value of the excess-oxidizer coeﬃ-

cient α

t

. As the aluminum and AP particles move, their

heating occurs owing to the conductive and radiation

heat exchanges with the gas phase whose temperature

decreases. At a 600 K temperature of the AP particles,

their decomposition begins and, therefore, the value of

α

t

increases. Simultaneously, the process of interaction

of the aluminum particles with the formed decomposi-

tion products occurs. As a consequence, the gas supply

increases, and the c-phase fraction decreases (Fig. 3).

In the ﬂame front, the largest values of the temperature

and heat-release gradients in the system (proportion-

ally to the mass ﬂux of the reacted aluminum

¯

G

s

) are

observed. Since the polyfractional compositions of the

combustible and the oxidizer are considered, the occur-

rence of both the surface and vapor-phase reactions is

possible in a ﬁxed cross section. As the experimental

results [8] show, the regime of aluminum reaction al-

ters at the moment of breaking of the continuity of the

272 Yagodnikov and Bobrov

Fig. 6. The total completeness of the propellant (a) and AP (b) combustion versus the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient

(solid and dashed curves refer to ASD-1-based and ASD-4-based propellants, respectively) and the pressure [p = 2

(1) and 0.5 MPa (2)].

oxide ﬁlm or its removal from the surface of a particle

whose temperature is ≈2300 K and which does not al-

most change at the stage of combustion. The released

heat goes to heating of the gas phase.

Generally, the hydrodynamic pattern of combus-

tion and the proﬁle of the main parameters depend on

the dispersivity of a powder combustible. In partic-

ular, for ASD-1 aluminum (with a wider spectrum of

particle sizes), the dependence

¯

G

s

(x) is characterized

by two extrema (see Fig. 2a). At ﬁrst, the particles of

the ﬁner fractions completely burn out and are gasiﬁed

and the ﬁrst maximum is shifted closer to the origin

of coordinates, and the second extremum, which is due

to the presence of coarse AP and aluminum particles

in the initial distribution, is on the descending branch

(see Fig. 1). For ASD-4, only one extremum was ob-

tained (see Fig. 2b). It is located in the vicinity of the

initial cross section, since the ﬁner particles ignite and

burn out more rapidly. For the same reason, with other

conditions being equal, the completeness of combustion

increases by 48.4% and the temperature of the gas sus-

pension increases by 41.6% at the exit of the combustion

chamber.

From the practical viewpoint, of greatest interest

are the data on the eﬀect of the size of aluminum par-

ticles, the ratio between the components, and the pres-

sure on the ignition and combustion characteristics of

a two-component gas suspension. We analyze these de-

pendences in more detail.

With increase in pressure, the mass and heat trans-

fer in the gas–particle system becomes more intense and,

hence, the period of ignition induction becomes smaller.

Moreover, as the pressure rises, the rate of AP gasiﬁca-

tion increases [6] and the aluminum particles begin to

interact earlier with the oxidizing medium. This may

be interpreted as the increase in the characteristic res-

idence time in the combustion chamber. All this leads,

ﬁrst, to a decrease in the content of the c-phase in the

combustion products (see Fig. 3a) owing to increased

gas supply to the system and, second, to an increase

in the total degree of conversion of the chemical energy

of a two-component powder propellant (Fig. 4). Fig-

ure 4 also shows experimental results [3]. One can see

that, for an ASD-4-based propellant, the experimental

and theoretical data agree satisfactorily, and a signiﬁ-

cant discrepancy is observed in the case where ASD-1

aluminum is used, especially at p > 1 MPa. This can be

explained by large losses caused by incomplete burning-

out of the propellant under experimental conditions.

The data obtained on the eﬀect of the dispersivity of

aluminum particles have an obvious explanation: the

ﬁne aluminum particles are heated and burn out more

rapidly, thus accelerating the gasiﬁcation of AP parti-

cles, and they allow one to obtain larger values of ϕ

Σ

on a ﬁxed length of the combustion chamber.

An important practical conclusion follows from

the results obtained. Since the eﬃciency of the use

of a metal-containing propellant is proportional to

_

RT(1 −z) [8], the decrease in z with increase in p and

α and with decrease in the average sizes of aluminum

particles, the pulse characteristics of a propulsion sys-

tem that goes on a two-component powder propellant

increase.

The calculations have shown that, for the poorly

disperse ASD-1 aluminum, the gas temperature at the

right boundary of the ﬂame (Fig. 5) increases with the

excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient relative to the stoichiometric

composition. In contrast, for the highly disperse ASD-

4 aluminum, a weakly expressed extremum displaced

to the depleted-mixture region (α ≈ 1.5–2) relative to

the stoichiometric composition is observed. It is note-

worthy that this coordinate does not correspond to the

maximum of the equilibrium temperature of AP and

aluminum combustion (α ≈ 0.87).

The increase in temperature upon depletion of the

gas suspension also leads to an increase in the total

Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer 273

completeness of propellant combustion (Fig. 6a), be-

cause the mass and heat transfers are intensiﬁed upon

heating of the aluminum and AP particles. Since the

degree of AP gasiﬁcation practically does not depend

on α (Fig. 6b), the working process is intensiﬁed by in-

creased completeness of aluminum combustion. As a

consequence, the fraction of the c-phase in the combus-

tion products (see Fig. 3b) decreases, which can increase

the eﬃciency of the use of a propulsion system which

runs on a two-component powder propellant irrespec-

tively of the particle size. The dependence of ϕ

Σ

on the

dispersivity of aluminum particles is similar to that con-

sidered above: the completeness of combustion of the

ASD-4-based propellant is greater compared to that of

the ASD-1-based propellant. However, as the pressure

rises, the diﬀerence decreases owing to the fact that the

dependence ϕ

Σ

(p) is stronger for ASD-1 aluminum.

CONCLUSIONS

• A mathematical model of the ignition and com-

bustion of a gas suspension of aluminum and ammo-

nium perchlorate powders that takes into account their

polydisperse distribution, the diﬀerence between the ve-

locities and temperatures of the gas and disperse phases

and which permits one to study the eﬀect of the pres-

sure, the ratio between the components, and the dis-

persibility of an aluminum powder on the main ignition

and combustion characteristics of a gas suspension has

been developed.

• In designing a propulsion system that runs on a

two-component powder propellant, the excess-oxidizer

coeﬃcient should be greater than unity, since this allows

one to increase the completeness of combustion of the

propellant mixture and decrease the content of the c-

phase in the combustion products.

This work was supported by the Ministry of Gen-

eral and Professional Education of the Russian Federa-

tion (Grant No. GR-1/99 MAI).

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6. T. L. Boggs, D. E. Zurn, and D. W. Netzer, “Ammo-

nium perchlorate combustion. Eﬀects of sample prepara-

tion, ingredient type, pressure, temperature and accele-

ration environments,” Combust. Sci. Technol., 7, No. 2,

177–183 (1973).

7. M. A. Gurevich, E. S. Ozerov, and A. A. Yurinov, “Ef-

fect of an oxide ﬁlm on the character of aluminum igni-

tion,” Fiz. Goreniya Vzryva, 14, No. 4, 50–55 (1978).

8. P. F. Pokhil, A. F. Belyaev, Yu. V. Frolov, et al., Com-

bustion of Powder Metals in Active Media [in Russian],

Nauka, Moscow (1972).

9. G. B. Sinyarev, N. A. Vatolin, B. G. Trusov, and

G. K. Moiseev, Use of Computers in Thermodynamic

Computations [in Russian], Nauka, Moscow (1982).

10. L. B. Gavin, V. A. Medvedev, and N. A. Naumov,

“Model of a two-phase turbulent jet with allowance for

heterogeneous combustion of particles,” Fiz. Goreniya

Vzryva, 24, No. 3, 12–17 (1988).

11. N. B. Vargaftik, Handbook of Thermophysical Proper-

ties of Gases and Liquids [in Russian], Nauka, Moscow

(1971).

one can consider that the ignition characteristics do not depend on the crystal structure of the oxide ﬁlm. it is necessary to describe many physicochemical and thermal gasdynamic processes. Nu is the Nusselt criterion. respectively. In the present work. Not dwelling on the commonly adopted assumptions in detail. p and T are. q is the thermal eﬀect of the reaction. we note the following.3 · 10−3 for 105 drp Tp = 600 K. 0 for Tp = 600 K. the pressure and temperature of the gas phase (the parameter without a subscript characterizes the entire gas phase). for ammonium perchlorate. a one-dimensional model solved in a two-continual formulation.5 rs 3 drs Ts − T rs cs ρs − ρs qs dt − Nuλ 2rs dTs 4 4 = + εs σ(T − Ts ) . We now consider the main speciﬁc features of the combustion of aluminum particles in the products of AP decomposition. p 0. 80 rp 180 µm.73 −3. the problem is extremely complicated. In this formulation. It is assumed that the AP and aluminum particles arrive at the reaction zone with the same velocities. and density of a particle.2 · 10−5 g . g is the relative mass concentration of the oxidizing components. Therefore. H2 O. Ts 2300 K. The interaction of aluminum particles with an oxidizing medium of complex composition occurs as a result of surface and vapor-phase reactions. It is assumed in the work that owing to the large content of oxidizing components in the gas phase and also owing to the high initial temperature of the gas (Tb = 2400 K). respectively.9 dt −2. dTp = dt for Tp 600 K. s Ts drs = 0. Ts = 2300 K [8].7 kJ/kg) and the enthalpy of the equilibrium composition of the AP decomposition products (calculated by means of the universal “Astra” code [9]) and it was approximated by the polynomial: 2 qp = −0.268 given problem and take into account the pressure and the particle size. is common for the processes of interaction of aluminum with diﬀerent oxidizing media. namely.62 MJ/kg [8]. radius. respectively. The thermal eﬀect of the reaction of AP decomposition was calculated with the use of the diﬀerence between the enthalpy of AP formation (∆Hp = 588. In modeling of a two-phase ﬂow. Since a rareﬁed gas suspension is most often used in practice. 0.9 kJ/kg. the heating rate of a particle to the ignition temperature exceeds the crystallization rate of the oxide ﬁlm. which is equal to the temperature in the return-ﬂow zone of the model combustion chamber [3]. With allowance for the said above and on the basis of an analysis of experimental data on the kinetics of AP decomposition and the ignition and combustion of aluminum particles. r. In the case considered. −104 g exp − 8500 . and Cl2 ) can occur. forming a gas suspension in it. drp Tp − T 3 r ρ − ρp qp dt − Nuλ 2r p p p 4 + εp σ(T 4 − Tp ) (1) Here c. dt 0. a mathematical model that describes the change in the temperature and radius of the particles can be presented by the following system of differential equations obtained from the complete-enthalpy and particle-mass balance equations: Yagodnikov and Bobrov for aluminum. respectively.0016Tp + 0. being at the boundary between gas dynamics and the theory of combustion of disperse systems. Therefore. we ignore the contact interaction between the particles.9 · 10−3 p for 5 10 Tp = 600 K. 0 for Tp < 600 K. Ts = 2300 K. . the problem is complicated by the fact that various parallel reactions of interaction between aluminum and the products of AP decomposition (O2 . 10 rp 80 µm [6]. and ε and σ are the degree of emissivity of the particle surface and the Stefan–Boltzmann constant. preﬂame heating (ignition) and vaporphase combustion. The existence of two interrelated stages. the use of generalized results which describe the combustion time of aluminum particles in the composition of an AP-based solid propellant versus the determining parameters seems to be justiﬁed. and ρ (with subscripts) are the heat capacity. when the AP and aluminum particles can have the velocity and the temperature diﬀerent from the corresponding characteristics of the gas phase is proposed.841Tp + 3323. λ is the thermal conductivity. T < 2300 K [7]. the subscripts “s” and “p” refer to aluminum and AP. = dt 0. The thermal eﬀect of the reaction of aluminum–AP interaction is taken to be equal to qs = 8.82 −1.

3 dt f = 1 + 0.5 . 3 i ∆mp = 4π ρp N p 3 0 3 γ(rp. Nu = 2 + 0.p = f (u − us. and η is the heat capacity. Particle number density. j mp = Here c.p .i ]. i 3 γ(rp. density. In the present paper.j m0 .p ) is considered. s −1 Np = j 0 3 γ(rp. this can be presented as follows: 0 0 Here ri and rj are the initial radii of the aluminum and AP particles (of the ith and jth fractions. velocity.013Re. respectively. and the inﬂow is connected with AP combustion.j )rp.p − u|2rs.Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer 269 Fig. the initial AP and aluminum masses decrease with a simultaneous increase in the degrees of burning-out. p Here m is the initial total mass of the particles. respectively.p )6πηrs. The known distribution makes it possible to determine the total number of aluminum particles (Ns ) and AP particles (Np ) from the following relations: Ns = i 3 γ(rs. ρ.i )rs. which allows one to pass from equations for the enthalpy to equations for the temperature.i • The masses of the reacted aluminum and gasiﬁed AP are 4π 0 3 ∆ms = ρs N s γ(rs.j ]. • The masses of the nonreacted aluminum and AP are ms = 4π ρs N s 3 4π ρp N p 3 3 γ(rs.p ρ/η.i . the temperature variation in the system in an elementary cell is determined by the mass of the burned-out aluminum.6Pr0.i )3 − rs.33 Re0. j 4π ρs 3 4π ρp 3 −1 m0 .j )[(rp. Here the thermodynamic equilibrium of the gas phase (over the entire two-component gas suspension) in each cross section is assumed. in correspondence with the heat-balance equation.j )rp. 1). The heat capacities of the gas phase and solid particles are assumed to be equal. Mathematically. In the course of chemical reactions. its composition does not almost vary) is connected with the surface oxidation and burning-out of aluminum particles. we use the model of averaged one-dimensional ﬂow of the gas phase which is aﬀected by the particles owing to point sources (outﬂows) of mass and heat.p is the particle velocity (of aluminum or AP).179Re0. respectively). It is assumed that the outﬂow of the gas-phase mass (according to thermodynamic analysis. 1.j . In the present paper. Re = |us. Pr = ηc/λ. The dynamic interaction of the phases was determined by the technique from [10] under the assumption that the aerodynamic drag force prevails: 4π d (ρr3 u)s.i )rs. In . The subscripts i and j correspond to the fractions with a ﬁxed initial radius of aluminum and AP particles. and dynamic viscosity of the gas. Since the initial temperature and the temperature of the products of AP combustion are taken to be equal.j )3 − rp. the polyfractional gas suspension simulated by the diﬀerential particle distribution γ(rs. u.i )[(rs.5 + 0. The forms of the distributions correspond to the commercial powder aluminum (ASD-1 or ASD4) and AP (D-315) (Fig. and us.

1. ¯ Gs . ϕΣ . 3 (3). 3. αt is the current value of the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient. and 6 (4). respectively.5 (1). 2. for α = 1. and αt . the following system can be written: du 4 d = (∆mp − K∆ms ).53): curve 1 refers to an ASD-1-based propellant for p = 1 MPa. The completeness of aluminum combustion and the completeness of AP gasiﬁcation. m0 + m0 s p z= mp + m0 (1 − ϕs + 51/27ϕs ) s . m0 + m0 s p αt = ∆mp . g = g 0 − 1. are calculated from the relations ϕs = 1 − ms /m0 . which enter (2). this connection. for the gas phase. R is the gas constant. Fig.270 Yagodnikov and Bobrov Fig. (m0 − ∆ms )K s Here z is the mass fraction of the c-phase.9 ρ= p .53 and p = 1 MPa. Change of the mass fraction of the c-phase along the ﬂow: (a) eﬀect of the pressure and dispersivity of aluminum particles (α = 1. D is the diameter of the combustion chamber. the superscript 0 corresponds to the initial values of the parameters. s p The total completeness of conversion of the chemical energy of a propellant is determined on the basis of the ratio between the values of the ﬂow-rate complex obtained in this work and by means of the “Astra” code: ϕΣ = β/β ∗ [β = RT (1 − z)/A(k)]. dt πD2 ρ dt T = T 0 + (T ∗ − T 0 )ϕs . K = 2. and T ∗ is the adiabatic combustion temperature. Flame parameters for ASD-1-based (a) and ASD-4-based propellants (b): curves 1–4 refer to T . respectively. curves 2 and 3 refer to an ASD-4-based propellant for p = 1 and 4 MPa.614 is the mass stoichiometric ratio of the components.53 (2). RT (1 − z) (2) ∆mp ϕp . (b) eﬀect of the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient of an ASD-4-based propellant for p = 2 MPa and α = 0. ϕp = 1 − mp /m0 . .

points refer to the adiabatic combustion temperature T ∗ . 5. the initial supply rates of the components (4 m/sec). Since the polyfractional compositions of the combustible and the oxidizer are considered. As a consequence. and the temperature in the return-ﬂow zone (2400 K) are the same as in the experiments [3]. and t is in sec.Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer 271 Fig. the largest values of the temperature and heat-release gradients in the system (proportion¯ ally to the mass ﬂux of the reacted aluminum Gs ) are observed. the occurrence of both the surface and vapor-phase reactions is possible in a ﬁxed cross section. and dashed curves to experiment [3]. T = Tb .5 MPa): curves 1 and 2 refer to ASD-4-based and ASD-1-based propellants. g 0 = 0. A(k) = The values of the initial velocity of aluminum and AP particles (u0 = 4 m/sec) correspond to the velocs. 0 Tp = Tp = 300 K. its inﬂuence on the hydrodynamic characteristics of the ﬂow was ignored. the SI system is used: p is in Pa. the diameter of the combustion chamber (0. Thus. their decomposition begins and.p is in m. the process of interaction of the aluminum particles with the formed decomposition products occurs.07 m). Completeness of propellant combustion versus the pressure (α = 1.16. 3). the regime of aluminum reaction alters at the moment of breaking of the continuity of the . T is in K. for the onset of ignition of the great bulk of aluminum. The region x 0. it is necessary for have active oxidizing components in the gas phase. their heating occurs owing to the conductive and radiation heat exchanges with the gas phase whose temperature decreases. respectively.54. Ts = Ts0 = 300 K. 4. and. In the ﬂame front. respectively. solid curves refer to calculation. the gas supply increases. the value of αt increases. In the general case. a gas suspension with a large content of the c-phase enters the reaction zone (≈90%). Combustion temperature versus the excessoxidizer coeﬃcient α (p = 0. Here 1/(k−1) 2 2k = 0. At a 600 K temperature of the AP particles. rs. namely. Systems (1) and (2) were solved by the ﬁnitediﬀerence method under the following initial conditions: t = 0: us = up = u0 . Precisely the presence of such components as the products of AP decomposition specify the local value of the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient αt . which corresponds to the condition of continuous ignition of a mixture owing to the heat exchange with a heat-release source. It is clear that. Simultaneously. The values of the thermophysical parameters of the gas phase are taken from [11] for molecular oxygen and they are approximated by polynomials as the functions of temperature.641 k+1 k+1 is the parameter of a supersonic gas ﬂow calculated with the use of the expansion parameter k = 1. by the return-ﬂow zone. therefore.1 is ﬁlled with a hot gas whose tem¯ perature is Tb = 2400 K. the mass ﬂow rate of the carrying gas does not exceed 3–5% of the total consumption of the propellant. Fig.53): curves 1 and 2 refer to ASD-4-based and ASD-1-based propellants. In the calculations. hence. The necessary physicochemical characteristics of aluminum and AP are taken from [8].p ity of a carrying gas necessary for pseudoliquefaction and supply of the powder propellant components to the combustion chamber of a propulsion system. the problem considered contains many geometrical and regime parameters immediately entering the mathematical model and some of them. As the aluminum and AP particles move. which were experimentally recorded in [3]. According to the experimental data from [3]. for example. Figure 2 shows calculation results obtained for the structure characteristics of the combustion zone of D-315 AP and ASD-1 and ASD-4 aluminum powders. As the experimental results [8] show. and the c-phase fraction decreases (Fig.

for ASD-1 aluminum (with a wider spectrum of ¯ particle sizes). is on the descending branch (see Fig. the completeness of combustion increases by 48. and the second extremum. 2b). and the pressure on the ignition and combustion characteristics of a two-component gas suspension. a weakly expressed extremum displaced to the depleted-mixture region (α ≈ 1. only one extremum was obtained (see Fig. the hydrodynamic pattern of combustion and the proﬁle of the main parameters depend on the dispersivity of a powder combustible. for the highly disperse ASD4 aluminum. the pulse characteristics of a propulsion system that goes on a two-component powder propellant increase. The calculations have shown that. 5) increases with the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient relative to the stoichiometric composition.5–2) relative to the stoichiometric composition is observed. One can see that. For ASD-4.5 MPa (2)]. An important practical conclusion follows from the results obtained. The total completeness of the propellant (a) and AP (b) combustion versus the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient (solid and dashed curves refer to ASD-1-based and ASD-4-based propellants. of greatest interest are the data on the eﬀect of the size of aluminum particles. and they allow one to obtain larger values of ϕΣ on a ﬁxed length of the combustion chamber.87). 2a). The data obtained on the eﬀect of the dispersivity of aluminum particles have an obvious explanation: the ﬁne aluminum particles are heated and burn out more rapidly. 6. the gas temperature at the right boundary of the ﬂame (Fig. the experimental and theoretical data agree satisfactorily. In contrast. 4). It is located in the vicinity of the initial cross section. 3a) owing to increased gas supply to the system and.6% at the exit of the combustion chamber. to a decrease in the content of the c-phase in the combustion products (see Fig. From the practical viewpoint. The released heat goes to heating of the gas phase. All this leads. which is due to the presence of coarse AP and aluminum particles in the initial distribution. Moreover. The increase in temperature upon depletion of the gas suspension also leads to an increase in the total . 1). since the ﬁner particles ignite and burn out more rapidly. Since the eﬃciency of the use of a metal-containing propellant is proportional to RT (1 − z) [8]. Figure 4 also shows experimental results [3]. In particular. Generally. respectively) and the pressure [p = 2 (1) and 0. thus accelerating the gasiﬁcation of AP particles. the ratio between the components. especially at p > 1 MPa.272 Yagodnikov and Bobrov Fig. the decrease in z with increase in p and α and with decrease in the average sizes of aluminum particles. For the same reason. At ﬁrst. the dependence Gs (x) is characterized by two extrema (see Fig. This may be interpreted as the increase in the characteristic residence time in the combustion chamber. oxide ﬁlm or its removal from the surface of a particle whose temperature is ≈2300 K and which does not almost change at the stage of combustion. We analyze these dependences in more detail. second. ﬁrst. the mass and heat transfer in the gas–particle system becomes more intense and. This can be explained by large losses caused by incomplete burningout of the propellant under experimental conditions. the period of ignition induction becomes smaller. hence. for the poorly disperse ASD-1 aluminum. It is noteworthy that this coordinate does not correspond to the maximum of the equilibrium temperature of AP and aluminum combustion (α ≈ 0.4% and the temperature of the gas suspension increases by 41. to an increase in the total degree of conversion of the chemical energy of a two-component powder propellant (Fig. the rate of AP gasiﬁcation increases [6] and the aluminum particles begin to interact earlier with the oxidizing medium. With increase in pressure. as the pressure rises. for an ASD-4-based propellant. with other conditions being equal. and a signiﬁcant discrepancy is observed in the case where ASD-1 aluminum is used. the particles of the ﬁner fractions completely burn out and are gasiﬁed and the ﬁrst maximum is shifted closer to the origin of coordinates.

Nauka. Montanino. 3. Netzer. 3–7 (1992). et al. N. 8. Pokhil. P. 2. Technol. “Gas generator running on a pseudoliqueﬁed powder propellant. No. the excess-oxidizer coeﬃcient should be greater than unity. 1162 (1972). W. K. Loftus. G. Korobeinichev (ed. “Model of a two-phase turbulent jet with allowance for heterogeneous combustion of particles. 4. Tekh. 50–55 (1978). This work was supported by the Ministry of General and Professional Education of the Russian Federation (Grant No. and D. S. J. N. F. The dependence of ϕΣ on the dispersivity of aluminum particles is similar to that considered above: the completeness of combustion of the ASD-4-based propellant is greater compared to that of the ASD-1-based propellant. 7. Nauka. A. B. Nauka. Modeling of Solid Propellant Combustion [in Russian].” Combust. L. Since the degree of AP gasiﬁcation practically does not depend on α (Fig. V. Gurevich. Vargaftik. E. 11. Naumov. A.” AIAA Paper No. Medvedev. the diﬀerence decreases owing to the fact that the dependence ϕΣ (p) is stronger for ASD-1 aluminum. N. and G. Moscow (1982). because the mass and heat transfers are intensiﬁed upon heating of the aluminum and AP particles. Moiseev. No. Ya. A. T. Nauka. and the dispersibility of an aluminum powder on the main ignition and combustion characteristics of a gas suspension has been developed. 55–62 (1974). Reinkhardt. REFERENCES 273 CONCLUSIONS • A mathematical model of the ignition and combustion of a gas suspension of aluminum and ammonium perchlorate powders that takes into account their polydisperse distribution. Vatolin. and V. Raket. “Ignition and combustion of combustible and oxidizer powders. “Powder rocket feasibility evaluation. A. Use of Computers in Thermodynamic Computations [in Russian]. Ozerov. C. L. the working process is intensiﬁed by increased completeness of aluminum combustion. Gavin. Eﬀects of sample preparation. M. B.Combustion of a Gas Suspension Including Combustible and Oxidizer completeness of propellant combustion (Fig. P. Frolov. Bryndle. Novosibirsk (1985). 177–183 (1973). No. Sherr and T. Popov. 10. Boggs. A. 5. “Ammonium perchlorate combustion. Moscow (1971). the fraction of the c-phase in the combustion products (see Fig. Handbook of Thermophysical Properties of Gases and Liquids [in Russian]. Trusov. 2. L. V.” Vopr. Goreniya Vzryva. P. Yurinov. F. 3b) decreases. As a consequence. N. 4. Mechanism of Thermal Decomposition of Ammonium Perchlorate [in Russian]. Goreniya Vzryva. Zarko. • In designing a propulsion system that runs on a two-component powder propellant. “Effect of an oxide ﬁlm on the character of aluminum ignition. O. and A.. E. 14. Bobyshev. Nauka. 6b). and N. A. since this allows one to increase the completeness of combustion of the propellant mixture and decrease the content of the cphase in the combustion products. B. F. temperature and acceleration environments. the diﬀerence between the velocities and temperatures of the gas and disperse phases and which permits one to study the eﬀect of the pressure. E. Sinyarev. Bobrov. Yu. M. GR-1/99 MAI).). K. 9. Goreniya Vzryva. A. A. Moscow (1972). 9. 1. 5. . Gusachenko. G. Zurn..” Fiz.” Fiz. Yagodnikov. the ratio between the components.. D. H. as the pressure rises. No. 24. V. B. No. Combustion of Powder Metals in Active Media [in Russian]. 12–17 (1988). Zyryanov. D. 28. However. Novosibirsk (1970). V. and R. Sci.” Fiz. 7. 6. Belyaev. V. ingredient type. 6a). L. which can increase the eﬃciency of the use of a propulsion system which runs on a two-component powder propellant irrespectively of the particle size. and I. 3. pressure.

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