Library Subscription: Guest
Begell Digital Portal Begell Digital Library eBooks Journals References & Proceedings Research Collections
International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion

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

International Journal of Energetic Materials and Chemical Propulsion

DOI: 10.1615/IntJEnergeticMaterialsChemProp.v8.i3.60
pages 253-266


Masafumi Tanaka
National Defense Academy Yokosuka
Munenori Tanaka
National Defense Academy Yokosuka
Yasukazu Seki
National Defense Academy Yokosuka
Katsuya Urakawa
National Defense Academy Yokosuka


The pressure deflagration limits (PDLs) of HTPB/AP propellant, GAP/AP propellants with various O/F ratios, boron/potassium nitrate, and liquid GAP were measured at various initial temperatures. Zel'dovich and Novozhilov theory modified by DeLuca successfully predicted that low PDL is attained by a high-burning-rate and low-pressure-index propellant. However, the theoretical effect of the initial temperature on PDL was contradictory to the experimental results. On the temperature profile curves measured by fine thermocouples, two characteristic inflection points were detected and they were not dependent on pressure. On the assumption that the condensed-phase reactions occur between these two points, the contributions from the gas-phase heat conduction and the condensed-phase heat generation to the stable low-pressure combustion were estimated. The dependence of the condensed-phase-reaction heat release on pressure varies with the propellant. Although the role of the condensed-phase heat release in stabilizing the combustion at low pressure is complicated and still unclear, the condensed-phase reactions in a layer of some thickness should be taken into consideration for a reliable PDL prediction.


  1. Miller, M.S. and Holmes, H.E., Subatmospheric Burning Rates and Critical Diameters for AP/HTPB Propellant.

  2. Cookson, R.A. and Fenn, J.B., Strand Size and Low-Pressure Deflagration Limit in a Composite Propellant.

  3. Summerfield, M., Caveny, L.H., Battista, R.A., Kubota, N., Gastintsev, Yu.A., and Isoda, H., Theory of Dynamic Extinguishment of Solid Propellants with Special Reference to Nonsteady Heat Feedback Law.

  4. Novozhilov, B.V., Theory of Nonsteady Burning and Combustion Stability of Solid Propellants by the Zeldovich-Novozhilov Method.

  5. DeLuca, L., Di Silvestro, R., and Cozzi, F., Intrinsic Combustion Instability of Solid Energetic Materials.

  6. DeLuca, L., Verri, M., and Jalongo, A., Intrinsic Stability of Energetic Solids Burning under Thermal Radiation.

  7. Krier, H., T’ien, J.S., Sirignano, W.A., and Summerfield, M., Nonsteady Burning Phenomena of Solid Propellants, Theory and Experiments.

  8. Tanaka, M., Nakao, C, and Hayakawa, S., Combustion of Solid Propellants at Low Pressure.