Abstract

In this paper, quantitative experiments were made to measure the concentration of key intermediate products (CO, N2O, and NO) and the gas temperature for combustion flow based on near-infrared and mid-infrared laser absorption spectroscopy. This paper used the developed diagnostic system to study two main ignition modes of a real 1-Newton thruster based on ammonium dinitramide (ADN): steady-state firing and pulse-mode firing over a feed pressure of 5–12 bar. The steady-state firing experiments distinguished the whole process into catalytic decomposition stage and combustion stage, experimentally demonstrating the combustion kinetics mechanism of an ADN monopropellant. Experiments for pulse-mode firing showed the measured multispecies concentration and temperature were consistent with pulse trains, verifying good performance for the thruster pulse-mode firing operation. The performance of the thruster was given based on the optical measurements, and characteristic velocity for the ADN-based thruster standard operation was higher than the corresponding 1-Newton hydrazine thruster.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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