Effect of Nanopowders on the Laser Ignition

Stephanie Mikos

The most energy-efficient way to increase the specific impulse and enhance the chamber’s combustion characteristics is to use metal powder as a fuel in high-energy materials (HEMs). HEMs typically contain aluminum powders with varying distributions of particle size. Utilizing nonmetals, metals, or their oxides as catalysts is recommended in order to enhance the Al-based HEMs’ ignition properties. The experimental results of the thermal decomposition and ignition of HEM samples made of ammonium perchlorate, butadiene rubber containing Alex aluminum nanopowders (NP), amorphous boron, iron, titanium, and copper are presented in this paper. When the HEM sample is ignited by a CO2 laser at a heat flux density of 60–200 W/cm2 , Alex and additives containing 2 weight percent iron and copper NP reduce the ignition delay time by 11–16 percent. Due to the reduced temperatures of the onset and the intense decomposition of HEM under heating, they also increase the recoil force of the gasification products’ outflow with the HEM surface by 1.3–1.5 times. The halfway substitution of Alex by a 5 wt% boron NP in the Stitch test lessens the start defer time by up to 20%.