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International Journal of Aerospace Engineering
Volume 2012, Article ID 673838, 15 pages
Research Article

Testing and Modeling Fuel Regression Rate in a Miniature Hybrid Burner

SPLab, Aerospace Engineering Department, Politecnico di Milano, 34 Via La Masa, 20156 Milan, Italy

Received 10 February 2012; Accepted 7 May 2012

Academic Editor: Dario Pastrone

Copyright © 2012 Luciano Fanton et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Ballistic characterization of an extended group of innovative HTPB-based solid fuel formulations for hybrid rocket propulsion was performed in a lab-scale burner. An optical time-resolved technique was used to assess the quasisteady regression history of single perforation, cylindrical samples. The effects of metalized additives and radiant heat transfer on the regression rate of such formulations were assessed. Under the investigated operating conditions and based on phenomenological models from the literature, analyses of the collected experimental data show an appreciable influence of the radiant heat flux from burnt gases and soot for both unloaded and loaded fuel formulations. Pure HTPB regression rate data are satisfactorily reproduced, while the impressive initial regression rates of metalized formulations require further assessment.