Propellant Chemistry

Naminosuke Kubota

ABSTRACT: Propellants used for pyrotechnics are composed of energetic materials that produce hightemperature and high-pressure gaseous products. The propellants are classified into three types by their physical structure and the ingredients used: (1) homogeneous propellants consisting of chemically bonded oxidizer and fuel components in the same molecule, (2) heterogeneous propellants consisting of physically mixed oxidizer and fuel components, and (3) granulated propellants consisting of energetic solid particles. While the energy content of a propellant is determined by the chemical properties of the ingredients, the physical properties and chemical processes of the ingredients determine the ballistic characteristics such as burn rate and pressure and temperature sensitivities.

Keywords: propellant chemistry, activation  energy, burn rate

Ref: JPyro, Issue 11, 2000, pp25-45

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