Catalyst, solid propellant, ammonium perchlorate, titania, nanoparticle
The purpose of this study is to examine the burning behaviour of composite solid propellants (CSP) in the presence of nanoscale, heterogenous catalysts. The study targets the decomposition of ammonium perchlorate (AP) as a key component in the burning profile of these propellants, and seeks to identify parameters of AP decomposition reaction that can be affected by catalytic additives. The decomposition behavior of AP was studied in the presence of titanium dioxide nanoparticles in varying configurations, surface conditions, dopants, morphology, and synthesis parameters with the AP crystals. The catalytic nanoparticles were found to enhance the decomposition rate of the ammonium perchlorate, and promote an accelerated burning rate of CSP propellants containing the additives. Furthermore, different configurations were shown to have varying degrees of effectiveness in promoting the decomposition behaviour. To study the effect of the catalyst’s configuration in the bulk propellant, controlled dispersion conditions of the nanoparticle catalysts were created and studied using differential scanning calorimetry, as well as model propellant strand burning. The catalysts were shown to promote the greatest enthalpy of reaction, as well as the highest burn rate, when the AP crystals were recrystalized around the nanoparticle additives. This is in contrast to the lowest enthalpy condition, which corresponded to catalysts being dispersed upon the AP crystal surface using bio-molecule templates. Additionally, a method of facile, visible light nanoparticle tracking was developed to study the effect of mixing and settling parameters on the nano-catalysts. To accomplish this, the titania nanoparticles were doped with fluorescent europium molecules to track the dispersion of the catalysts in the propellant binder. This method was shown to succesfully allow for dispersion and agglomeration monitoring without affecting the catalytic effect of the TiO2 nanoparticles.
Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering (M.S.M.S.E.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Materials Science Engineering
Materials Science and Engineering
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Engineering and Computer Science, Engineering and Computer Science -- Dissertations, Academic
Draper, Robert, "Novel Nanostructures And Processes For Enhanced Catalysis Of Composite Solid Propellants" (2013). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2744.