Dehydrogenation and burning of aluminum hydride at elevated pressures

Tim Bazyn, Ryan Eyer, Herman Krier, Nick Glumac

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The combustion behavior of aluminum hydride (AlH 3) at elevated pressures (8.5 atm) and temperatures (1500-2800 K) in various oxidizers has been investigated using a shock tube. The burn times of AlH 3 in O 2 and CO 2 were measured using emission from AlO and compared with aluminum. Burn times were similar for both materials when heating and dehydrogenation was allowed to occur before being introduced to combustion conditions, as well as for conditions in which there was no heating or dehydrogenation before exposure to the combustion environment. The gas phase temperature from AlO spectroscopy and solid phase temperature from pyrometry were also similar for both aluminum and AlH 3. AlH 3 ignites at lower, temperatures than aluminum. These measurements are consistent with very fast dehydrogenation followed by combustion of the remaining aluminum. Based on these measurements, if aluminum hydride were substituted for aluminum in conventional propellant mixtures, this would lead to the desorbed hydrogen reacting in the propellant flame zone, while the residual aluminum would burn in the post flame gases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages9
StatePublished - 2004
Event42nd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit - Reno, NV, United States
Duration: Jan 5 2004Jan 8 2004


Conference42nd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityReno, NV

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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