Emission Reduction through Chemical Kinetic Modeling of Real Engine Effects (REE)

Period of Performance: 03/14/2001 - 05/14/2003


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Sierra Engineering, Inc.
603 East Robinson Street Suite 7
Carson City, NV 89701
Principal Investigator


We propose to develop a rocket engine injector and combustion chamber that will not only allow and engine to meet performance and durability requirements, but also will enable plume-signature tailoring. This tailoring ability would be extremely valuable for surrogate targets, as it will enable the production of low-cost, surrogate targets that could imitate the plume signatures of SCUD's and SCUD family missiles. The technology developed here will improve: liquied rocket target-missile fidelity; analysis capability for combustion processes in liquid rocket engines; and plume diagnostic tools for determining rocket engine performance. It will also assess advanced hydrocarbon fuels for their ability to increase density-specific impulse, and improve the mission capability of future space vehicles. This effrot will fabricate and fire a sub-scale combustion chamber, the design of which will demonstrate the capability of varying plume signature while meeting performance and durability requirements. A hydrocarbon-fuels test-bed will also be designed, fabricated, and tested under the project. The project will create a liquid-rocket engine diagnostic instrumentation capable of determining mixture-ratio striations across the exit-plane, and improve combustion modeling tools. Development of ballistic missile defense will require target missiles for training. This project will improve the fidelity of those targets by creating a target exhaust plume signature that look like a SCUD. Sierra Engineering will be situated to supply the combustion chamber devices for these target missiles. Furthermore, Sierra Engineering is likely to see substantial commercial benefits from this project even if BMDO does not produce a large liquid surrogate target demand. This is apparent from work that has come to Sierra Enineering as a direct result of the Phase I project, including combustion modeling ( for both future and current designs) and Plume signature modeling. The Phase II effort will help establish Sierra Engineering not only as a diagnostic and modeling leader, but also as a producer of combustion devices. And as environmental requirements drive commercial combustion devices to higher efficiency/lower pollution, the lessons learned through this proposal will poise Sierra Engineering to enter new, non-aerospace commercial fields.