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International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion
ESCI SJR: 0.149 SNIP: 0.16 CiteScore™: 0.29

ISSN Print: 2150-766X
ISSN Online: 2150-7678

International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion

DOI: 10.1615/IntJEnergeticMaterialsChemProp.v4.i1-6.370
pages 368-386

EVALUATION OF THE EFFECTIVENESS OF AN INDUSTRIAL REPAIR PROCEDURE FOR SOLID PROPELLANT GRAINS

Dan Cohen
Department of Mechanical Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802 USA
Steven J. Ritchie
Mechanical Engineering Department, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA
Yeu-Cherng Lu
Mechanical Engineering Department, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802

ABSTRACT

Voids and defects can exist in solid propellant grains as a result of the manufacturing process, transportation, or storage. For cases where the damage is not too severe, it is possible to salvage the grain segment by employing an appropriate repair. A new repair procedure has been developed by United Technologies/Chemical Systems Division (UT/CSD) for the Titan IV solid rocket motor (SRM) propellant grains. The repair procedure involved removing the damaged region of solid propellant and replacing the cavity with a specially formulated potting compound. This investigation has been undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of this procedure. A high-pressure windowed test rocket motor was modified and employed as a motor analog to simulate the combustion environment in actual rocket motors. Propellant samples were sized to provide long bum time in order to verify the repair effectiveness throughout the test duration. Repaired propellant samples were tested under several pressure levels to evaluate the repair effectiveness. Additionally, samples with un-repaired slits were also tested to evaluate the propensity for a flame to propagate into a cut defect in order to establish the validity of the repair tests. Based on test results, it was found that the suggested repair procedure was effective enough to prevent the occurrence of flame spreading into repaired regions. The repair procedure evaluated was found to be effective up to the maximum tested pressure level of 8.3 MPa.


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