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

ISSN Imprimer: 2150-766X
ISSN En ligne: 2150-7678

International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion

DOI: 10.1615/IntJEnergeticMaterialsChemProp.v6.i6.70
pages 775-791


Peter J. Ferrara
Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA 16802


The combustion process of gun propellants packed in high loading density conditions can differ significantly from those burning individually in the same pressure and temperature environment. More specifically, burning rates and flame-spreading processes for a propellant charge are not only functions of pressure and initial temperature, but are also a function of the loading density. An experimental study has been conducted to investigate the influence of gap space between propellants on propellant regression rates. In the experimental setup, two opposing strands of JA2 gun propellant were burned in a double-ended windowed strand burner (DEWSB) with a novel control system. A series of tests was conducted for a pressure range from 0.69 to 3.45 MPa, and a gap distance ranged from 0.5 to 12 mm. Comparing regression rate data of JA2 propellant burned in the double-end configuration to that of a single strand, an increase in the regression rate of about 30% was observed for the pressure range tested. This increase occurred for a certain gap-width range, which was found to be a function of pressure. The enhancement of the burning rate is believed to be caused by the geometric confinement of the flame, which supplied a greater energy feedback to the burning propellant surface.