The Propulsion Research Center has state-of-the-art facilities and diagnostic equipment for evaluating chemical propulsion related phenomena. The PRC has expertise in solid, liquid, and hybrid propulsion.
The PRC has experience in evaluating combustion for rocket engines. The primary high pressure rocket engine has windowed segments for in-chamber diagnostics. Diagnostic capabilities include Phase Doppler Particle Analysis, Chemilluminescence Imaging, High Speed Cinematography, Combustion Stability Assessment, and other laser-based techniques.
The UAHuntsville Propulsion Research Center’s Spray Facility provides a non-reactive environment for the study of liquid rocket and other types of injection devices.
The PRC has extensive experience in design and evaluation of liquid rocket engine injectors. The PRC has the ability to fabricate and evaluate concept infectors in-house.
Hot Fire Testing
The Propulsion Research Center has a hot fire rocket test facility for small scale liquid, gaseous, and solid rocket testing.
Cold Flow Testing
PRC offers cold flow testing of high and low speeds utilizing compressed airflow diagnostics.
Cryogenic Component Evaluation
The PRC has a cryogenic flow loop for testing components in a liquid nitrogen or liquid oxygen environment. Temperatures at -300° F can be achieved for flow rates up to 3lbm/s.
Solid Rocket Burning Measurement
Burning rates for energetic materials can be determined using an ultrasonic measurement technique for small samples. The PRC can handle small quantities of materials up to Department of Energy 1.3 classification. Samples are tested in a closed combustion bomb, which can be thermally conditioned for temperature sensitivity and pressure dependencies on burning rate.
Modeling of Plasmoid Thrusters Experiment (PTX)
The Plasma Liner Experiment explores and demonstrates the feasibility of forming imploding spherical “plasma liners” that can reach peak pressures ~0.1 Mbar upon stagnation by the merging of ~30 to 60 plasma jets in a spherical configuration. We are conducting 3D simulations of this experiment with SPHC, a smooth particle hydrodynamics code to assist in diagnostic analysis and for development of scaling laws.