Combustion Characteristics of Nanoaluminium-Based Composite Solid Propellants: An Overview

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JAYARAMAN K., Sivakumar P. M. , Zarrabi A., Sivakumar R., Jeyakumar S.

JOURNAL OF CHEMISTRY, vol.2021, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 2021
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1155/2021/5520430
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CAB Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The nanosized powders have gained attention to produce materials exhibiting novel properties and for developing advanced technologies as well. Nanosized materials exhibit substantially favourable qualities such as improved catalytic activity, augmentation in reactivity, and reduction in melting temperature. Several researchers have pointed out the influence of ultrafine aluminium (similar to 100 nm) and nanoaluminium (<100 nm) on burning rates of the composite solid propellants comprising AP as the oxidizer. The inclusion of ultrafine aluminium augments the burning rate of the composite propellants by means of aluminium particle's ignition through the leading edge flames (LEFs) anchoring above the interfaces of coarse AP/binder and the binder/fine AP matrix flames as well. The sandwiches containing 15% of nanoaluminium solid loading in the binder lamina exhibit the burning rate increment of about 20-30%. It was noticed that the burning rate increment with nanoaluminium is around 1.6-2 times with respect to the propellant compositions without aluminium for various pressure ranges and also for different micron-sized aluminium particles in the composition. The addition of nano-Al in the composite propellants washes out the plateaus in burning rate trends that are perceived from non-Al and microaluminized propellants; however, the burning rates of nanoaluminized propellants demonstrate low-pressure exponents at the higher pressure level. The contribution of catalysts towards the burning rate in the nanoaluminized propellants is reduced and is apparent only with nanosized catalysts. The near-surface nanoaluminium ignition and diffusion-limited nano-Al particle combustion contribute heat to the propellant-regressing surface that dominates the burning rate. Quench-collected nanoaluminized propellant residues display notable agglomeration, although a minor percentage of the agglomerates are in the 1-3 mu m range; however, these are within 5 mu m in size. Percentage of elongation and initial modulus of the propellant are decreased when the coarse AP particles are replaced by aluminium in the propellant composition.