Solid propellant grain design and burnback simulation using a minimum distance function

Michael A. Willcox, M. Quinn Brewster, K. C. Tang, D. Scott Stewart

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

A fast computational method for simulating the evolution of the burning surface of a complex, three-dimensional solid rocket motor (SRM) propellant grain has been developed using a signed minimum distance function (MDF). The resulting code (Rocgrain) allows motor grain design by user-friendly commercial computer-aided-design (CAD) programs. The MDF is calculated using stereo-lithography surface information from the CAD file and propellant surface burnback is simulated by manipulation of the initial MDF. Variable time stepping and multiple spatial grids further reduce computation time requirements. Results indicate this method to give adequate accuracy with acceptable computation time for time scales of the full motor burn. This enables a single geometric tool to be used for describing the propellant grain geometry for both grain design and internal flowfield analysis. The Rocgrain code can be coupled with a variety of flowfield physics modules ranging in complexity from simple zero-dimensional to more sophisticated CFD analysis (e.g., nonlinear acoustic instability).

Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005
Event41st AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit - Tucson, AZ, United States
Duration: Jul 10 2005Jul 13 2005

Other

Other41st AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit
CountryUnited States
CityTucson, AZ
Period7/10/057/13/05

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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  • Cite this

    Willcox, M. A., Brewster, M. Q., Tang, K. C., & Stewart, D. S. (2005). Solid propellant grain design and burnback simulation using a minimum distance function. Paper presented at 41st AIAA/ASME/SAE/ASEE Joint Propulsion Conference and Exhibit, Tucson, AZ, United States.