• P-ISSN 0974-6846 E-ISSN 0974-5645

Indian Journal of Science and Technology


Indian Journal of Science and Technology

Year: 2015, Volume: 8, Issue: 5, Pages: 481–488

Original Article

Understanding Ignition over Pressure During Start Up of Typical Scaled Down Solid Rocket Motors


The Ignition Over Pressure (IOP) is an unsteady pressure wave generated by the ignition of solid rocket motor during launch vehicle lift-off. This wave behaves as a blast or a shock wave followed by a low frequency excitation characterized up to 40 Hz, would cause severe damage to the launch vehicle, its structures and surroundings. However, in case of huge propulsion system, having two solid rocket motors as its boosters, due to the skew in their ignition, during lift-off, the phase difference of the wave from one side of the vehicle to the other could cause a severe moment, which is detrimental to the vehicle. The present paper deals with the occurrence of such blast waves during the testing of various scaled down solid rocket motors. Also, an attempt has been made experimentally to characterize and understand the propagation of the IOP wave causing unsteady pressure oscillations and transient pressure rise in the vicinity of a solid rocket motor. The spectral and directional characteristics of the IOP wave are also highlighted. Typical scaled-down solid rocket motors with and without nozzle shutters have been tested in horizontal firing configuration and the results are compared to study their effect. The resulting shock wave propagation has axial downstream as well as angular directivities. The pressure rise rate in the chamber is found to be directly correlated to the over pressure measured at various locations at the downstream of the nozzle.

Keywords: Directionality, Ignition Over Pressure, Ignition Transient, Shock Wave Propagation, Solid Rocket Motor


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