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Different Types of Rocket

Nozzles
5322- Rocket Propulsion
Project Report
By Patel Harinkumar
Rajendrabhai(1001150586)

1. Introduction
1.1 What is Nozzle and why they are used?
Anozzleisadevicedesignedtocontrolthedirectionorcharacteristicsofafluidflow
(especiallytoincreasevelocity)asitexits(orenters)anenclosedchamberorPipe [9].
Nozzlesarefrequentlyusedtocontroltherateofflow,speed,direction,mass,shape,
and/orthepressureofthestreamthatemergesfromthem.Innozzlevelocityoffluid
increasesontheexpenseofitspressureenergy.

AWaterNozzle[9]

RotatorStylePivotSprinkler[9]

1.2 What is Rocket Nozzle?


Arocketenginenozzleisapropellingnozzle(usuallyofthedeLavaltype)usedin
arocketenginetoexpandandacceleratethehotgasesfromcombustionsoasto
producethrustaccordingtoNewtonslawofmotion.Combustiongasesareproduced
byburningthepropellantsincombustor,theyexitthenozzleatveryhigh
Speed(hypersonic).

1.3 Properties of Rocket Nozzle


Nozzleproducesthrust.
Exhaustgasesfromcombustionarepushedintothroatregionofnozzle.
Throat is smaller cross-sectional area than rest of engine, gases are compressed to high

pressure.
Nozzlegraduallyincreasesincross-sectionalareaallowinggasestoexpandandpushagainst

wallscreatingthrust.
Convert thermal energy of hot chamber gases into kinetic energy and direct that energy

alongnozzleaxis.[1]
Mathematically,ultimatepurposeofnozzleistoexpandgasesasefficientlyaspossiblesoas

tomaximizeexitvelocity.[1]

RocketEngine[1]

F m eVe Pe Pa Ae
NeglectingPressurelosses
F m eVe

2 Different types of Rocket Nozzle Configuration(shape)


Therocketnozzlescanhavemanyshapesconfigurations.Onthebasesofthereshapes
theycanbeclassifiedinthreegroups.
3primarygroupsofnozzletypes[2,3]
1. Cone(conical,linear)
2. Bell(contoured,shaped,classicconverging-diverging)
3. Annular(spike,aerospike,plug,expansion,expansion-deflection)[1]
2.1 Conical nozzles[1,2,3]
Theconicalnozzleistheoldestandthesimplestconfiguration.
Itiseasetofabricate.
Theconegetsitsnamefromthefactthatthewallsdivergeataconstantangle.
Asmallangleproducesgreaterthrust,becauseitmaximizestheaxialcomponentofexitvelocityand

producesahighspecificimpulse(ameasureofrocketefficiency).
Small nozzle divergence angle means long length and axial momentum and thus high specific

impulse.
Ithaspenaltyinrocketpropulsionsystemmass,vehiclemassduetoitslonglength.
Largedivergenceanglereducessizeandweight.But,resultsinperformancelossatlowaltitudeas

thehighambientpressurecausesoverexpansionandflowseparation.

Inpracticethethrust,existvelocity,etcobtainedfromtheidealrocketequations

arenotthesame.So,somecorrectionfactorhastobeappliedtothisequations.
ThecorrectionfactorappliediscalleddivergencefactorandisdenotedbyGreek

alphabetLambda().
Theexpressionforthedivergencefactorisgivenby

1 / 2 * (1 cos )
isthehalfconeangle.
=1foridealrocket.
Foranozzlewithdivergenceangleof30deg.Thevalueofis15deg.
Variationofcorrectionfactorwithis

shown[2].

All 3 nozzles have same Ae/A*


Red dashed lines indicate contours of normal flow[1]

Flow is almost entirely axia


(Best is uniform axial flow)
Flow is mostly axial

Flow has significant radial component


Highly subject to separation
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Thedesignconsistofanarcsectionwhichbeginsatthroat.
Thearcsectionisfollowedbylinearsectionwithhalfconeangle.
ThelinearsectionhaslengthL,whichcanbecalculatedmathematicallyas,

Ae
D
1
*
A

L
2 tan
*

Where area
ratio is given by

Where,D*isthethroatdiameter.
Ae/A*istheratioofexitareatothroatarea.
ishalfconeangle.

Ae D 2 L tan


*
*
A
D

2.2 Bell/Contoured Nozzle[3,4]


Bellnozzledesignsaresimilartoconicalnozzledesignbutaremoreefficientand

morecompactthanaconicalnozzle.
Thebellnozzleisthemostcommonlyusednozzleshapetoday.
Itismoreadvantagesovertheconicalnozzleintermsofboth,sizeand

performance.
ItisContouredtominimizeturninganddivergencelosses.Reducingdivergence

requiresmoreturningflow(moreaxial)whichcanresultincompressionswhichin
terncouldleadtoshocklosses.
Thistypeofnozzlesaredesignedsuchthatallwavesareisentropicandproduce

nearlyaxialflowatexit.
Theexpansioninthesupersonicbellnozzleismoreefficientthaninasimple

straightconeofsimilararearatioandlength,becausethewallcontourisdesignedto
minimizelosses,asexplainedlaterinthissection[2].

Asshownbellow,thenozzleconsistsoftwosections.
Nearthethroat,thenozzledivergesatarelativelylargeangle(20to50degree)(1)

butthedegreeofdivergencedecreasesdownstream.
Nearthenozzleexit,thedivergenceangleisverysmall(lessthan10)(2).
Thebellnozzleisacompromisebetweenthetwoextremesoftheconicalnozzle

sinceitminimizesweightwhilemaximizingperformance.
Themostimportantdesignissueistocontourthenozzletoavoidobliqueshocks

andmaximizeperformance.
Thistypesofnozzleshapesareonlyoptimumatonealtitudeconditions.

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1

BellNozzle[1]

Modern Day Bell Nozzle[11]

Thedivergencelossattheexitofabellnozzleissignificantlylessthanthatfora

conicalnozzleofthesamedesign.
Theexitanglefora15degreeconicalnozzleis15degrees,whiletheexitangleofa

Bellnozzlewiththesameexitdiameterisonly8.5degrees.ThiscanbeseeninFig.
below.
Alsothebellnozzleisshorterandhaslessmassthantheconicalnozzlebecauseitis

morecompact.ThesecharacteristicsmakeaBellnozzlemuchmoreefficientthana
straightconicalnozzle[6].

Comparisonofconicalnozzlewithbellnozzle[2]

Achangeofflowdirectionofasupersonicgasinanexpandingwallgeometry

canonlybeachievedthroughexpansionwaves.
Anexpansionwaveoccursatathinsurface,wheretheflowvelocityincreasesand

changesitsflowdirectionslightly,andwherethepressureandtemperaturedrop.
Wavesurfacesareatanobliqueangletotheflow.
Asthegaspassesthroughthethroat,itundergoesaseriesoftheseexpansionwaves

withessentiallynolossofenergy.
Inthebell-shapednozzleshowninFig.theseexpansionsoccurinternallyintheflow

betweenthethroatandtheinflectionlocationI.
theareaissteadilyincreasinglikeaflareonatrumpet.
Thecontouranglei is a maximum attheinflectionlocation.Betweentheinflection

pointIandthenozzleexitE.
Thepurposeofthislastsegmentofthecontourednozzleistohavealowdivergence

lossasthegasleavesthenozzleexitplane.
Thedifferencebetweeni and 0e is called theturn-backangle.
Whenthegasflowisturnedintheoppositedirection(betweenpointsIandE)

obliquecompressionwaveswilloccur.
Thesecompressionwavesarethinsurfaceswheretheflowundergoesamildshock.

Theflowisturned,andthevelocityisactuallyreducedslightly.Eachofthese

multiplecompressionwavescausesasmallenergyloss.
Itispossibletobalancetheobliqueexpansionwaveswiththeobliquecompression

wavesandminimizetheenergylosswiththehelpofMethodofcharacteristics.
Thefirstsetofcurves[2]givenbelow(left)givestherelationbetweenlength,area

ratio,andthetwoanglesofthebellcontour.
Thesecondsetofcurves[2]givenbelow(right)givesthecorrectionfactors,

equivalenttothe2factorforconicalnozzles,whicharetobeappliedtothethrust
coefficientortheexhaustvelocity,providedthenozzlesareatoptimumexpansions,
thatis,P2=P3.

2.3 Annular Nozzle[1,3]


Theannularnozzle,alsosometimesknownastheplugor"altitude-compensating"

nozzle,istheleastemployedofthosediscussedduetoitsgreatercomplexity.
Theterm"annular"referstothefactthatcombustionoccursalongaring,orannulus,

aroundthebaseofthenozzle.
"Plug"referstothecenterbodythatblockstheflowfromwhatwouldbethecenter

portionofatraditionalnozzle.
"Altitude-compensating"issometimesusedtodescribethesenozzlessincethatistheir

primaryadvantage,aqualitythatwillbefurtherexploredlater.
Expansionratio:areaofcenterbodymustbetakenintoaccount

Aexit Aplug
Athroat

Anotherparameterannulardiameterratio,D plug/Dthroat
Ratioisusedasameasureofnozzlegeometryforcomparisonwithotherplugnozzle

shapes

Therearetwomajortypesofannularnozzlesdevelopedtodate.
Theyaredistinguishedbythemethodinwhichtheyexpandexhaust:(1)outwardor(2)

inward
RadialOut-FlowNozzles:Examplesofthistypearetheexpansion-deflection(E-D),
reverse-flow(R-F),andhorizontal-flow(H-F)nozzles
RadialIn-FlowNozzles:Spikenozzles,linear-aerospikenozzle.
Annularnozzlesreceivingsignificantresearchattention
Severalpublicationscalltheseconceptsnew,butinactual,theseideashavebeenaround

forquitesometime.
Thesearethemostcomplicatednozzlesandhencehaveseriouschallengeswithits

implementation

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2.3.1 RADIAL OUT-FLOW NOZZLES[1,3]

PictureshowsanexampleofanExpansion-Deflection(E-D)nozzle.
Expansion-deflectionnozzleworksmuchlikeabellnozzle.
Exhaustgasesforcedintoaconvergingthroatbeforeexpandinginabell-shapednozzle
Flowisdeflectedbyaplug,orcenterbody,thatforcesthegasesawayfromcenterof

nozzleandtostayattachedtonozzlewalls
Centerbodypositionmaymovetooptimizeperformance
Asaltitudeorback-pressurevaries,flowisfreetoexpandintovoid
Thisexpansionintovoidallowsthenozzletocompensateforaltitude
PeadjuststoPbwithinnozzle

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Nameofeachofthesenozzlesindicateshowitfunctions.
Expansion-deflectionnozzleworkssimilartoabellnozzle,sincetheexhaustgasesare

forcedintoaconvergingthroatregionoflowareabeforeexpandinginabell-shapednozzle.
However,theflowisdeflectedbyaplug,orcenterbody,thatforcesthegasesawayfromthe
centerofthenozzle.Thus,theE-Disaradialout-flownozzle.
Thereverse-flownozzlegetsitsnamebecausethefuelisinjectedfromunderneath,butthe

exhaustgasesarerotated180therebyreversingtheirdirection.Similarly,thefuelinthe
horizontal-flownozzleisinjectedsideways,buttheexhaustisrotated90.
TheE-D,hasbeenoneofthemoststudiedformsofannularnozzles.
Thepurposeofthecenterbodyistoforceflowtoremainattachedto,tosticktonozzlewalls.
Thistypeofnozzlesaredesirableatlowaltitudesbecausetheatmosphericpressureishigh

andmaybegreaterthanpressureofexhaustgases.
Whenthisoccurs,theexhaustisforcedinwardandnolongerexertsforceonthenozzle

walls,sothrustisdecreasedandtherocketbecomeslessefficient.
Thecenterbody,however,increasesthepressureoftheexhaustgasesbysqueezingthegases

intoasmallerareatherebyvirtuallyeliminatinganylossinthrustatlowaltitude.

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Themostnotabledifferencebetweenthesetypeandbellnozzleistheadditionofa

centerbody.Asshownbelow,this"plug"maybelocatedupstreamof,downstream
of,orinthethroat,witheachlocationresultinginbetterperformanceforagivensetof
operatingconditions.

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2.3.2 RADIAL IN-FLOW NOZZLES[3]


Oftenreferredtoasspikenozzles
Thistypeofnozzlenamedfortheprominentspikecenterbody.
Itcanalsobedescribedasabellturnedinsideout.
Variousdifferentconfigurationofthistypeofnozzlearepossible,someofthemare

(a)traditionalcurvedspikewithcompletelyexternalsupersonicexpansion
(b)similarshapeinwhichpartoftheexpansionoccursinternally
(c)designsimilartoE-Dnozzleinwhichallexpansionoccursinternally

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Eachofspikenozzlesfeaturesacurved,pointedspike.Itisthemostidealshape.
Spikeshapeallowstheexhaustgasesfromthenozzletoexpandthroughisentropic

orconstantentropyprocess.
Duetoturbulentmixingthereisexhaustnoenergylost.Hence,highnozzleefficiencycan

beachieved.
Isentropicspikearelongandheavy.
Replacingcurveshapebyshorterandeasiertoconstructconeresultsinlessperformance

loss.
Thefollowinggraphs[3]illustratesthatthethrustdecreasesbylessthan1%forconehalf-

anglesupto30.Furthermore,thegraphgivesanindicationofhowmuchthespikelength
canbereducedbyemployingacone-shapedspike.

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Aerospike Nozzle[7,2]

Furthersubclassofradialin-flowfamilyofspikenozzlesisknownasaerospike.
Theplugnozzleoraerospikenozzlehasanannulardoughnut-shapedchamber withan

annularnozzleslot.
Analternateversionhasanumberofindividualsmallchambers(eachwithlowarearatio

shortnozzles,aroundthroat,andarectangularexit)arrangedinacirclearoundacommon
plugorspike.
Theoutsideaerodynamicboundaryofthegasflowinthedivergentsectionofthenozzleis

theinterfacebetweenthehotgasandtheambientair.
thereisnoouterwallasinaconicalorbell-shapednozzle.
Astheexternalorambientpressureisreducedduringtheascendingflight,thisgasboundary

expandsoutward,causesachangeinpressuredistributiononthecentralspike,andallowsan
automaticandcontinuousaltitudecompensation.
Theaerospikecontourwithminimumflowlosseshavelengththatiscomparativetothe

lengthofanoptimumbellnozzle.
Themassflowperunitexitareaisrelativelyuniformoverthecrosssectionandthe

divergencelossesareminimal.
Togetshortnozzlethecentralplugiscutoffortruncatedandthewallcontourisslightly
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altered.

Thepressuredistributionandtheheattransferintensityvaryontheinnercontouredspike

wallsurface.
Figurebelow(left)showsatypicalpressuredistributionoverthecontouredspikesurfaceat

highandlowaltitudes.
Thepressureintherecalculatingtrappedgasofthesubsonicregionbelowthebottomplate

alsoexertsathrustforce.

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Typical Pressure Distribution over


the countered spike surface.[2]

Aerospike Nozzle[7]

Truncated aerospike nozzles


Furtherbyremovingpointedspikealtogetherandreplacewithaflatbase.Thisconfiguration

isknownasatruncatedspike(showninfig[7]Below).
Itwillhavesomeinternalsupersonicwavesandwillshowasmallbutreallossinthrust

comparedtoanozzlewithafullcentralspike.
Thelossescausedbythecut-offspikecanbereducedbyinjectingasmallamountofthegas

flow(about1%oftotalflow)throughthisbaseplateintotherecirculatingregion.
Theadvantagesofthetruncatedaerospikeareshortlength,whichhelpstoreducethelength

andmassoftheflightvehicle.
Fullaltitudecompensation,noflowseparationfromthewallatloweraltitudes,andeaseof

vehicle/engineintegrationforcertainvehicleconfigurations.

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Disadvantageof"flat"plugisturbulentwakeformsaftofbaseathighaltitudes

resultinginhighbasedragandreducedefficiency.
Alleviatedbyintroducinga"basebleed,"orsecondarysubsonicflow.
Circulationofthissecondaryflowanditsinteractionwiththeengineexhaustcreatesan

"aerodynamicspike"thatbehavesmuchliketheideal,isentropicspike.
Secondaryflowre-circulatesupwardpushingonbasetoproduceadditionalthrust.
Itisthisartificialaerodynamicspikeforwhichtheaerospikenozzleisnamed.

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Linear Aerospike Nozzle[8]


Itisalsoonemorevariationofaerospikenozzle.
LinearAerospikepioneeredbyRocketdyne(nowdivisionofBoeing)in1970s.
Placescombustionchambersareplacedlinearlyoverexhaustnozzle.
Spikenozzleistruncatedandallowsforadditionalthrustwithsubsonicrecirculatingflow

fieldformingatthetruncatedpart,asthegasesexpandoverthenozzle'ssurface.
Approachresultsinmoreversatiledesign
Useoflower-costmodularcombustors
Modulescanbecombinedinvaryingconfigurations dependingonapplication.

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Expansion-deflection nozzle (or Pintle Injector)[8]


Itisatypeofpropellantinjectiondeviceforarocketenginethatwasfirstusedonaflight

vehicleduringtheApolloProgramintheLunarExcursionModule'sdescentengine.
Pintleinjectors(showninfig[8]below)arecurrentlyusedinSpaceX'sMerlinengines:
Apintlenozzlegenerallyopensatalowerpressurethanthepressureatwhichthehole

nozzleopensbecausefuelflowsmorereadilyfromthelargeholeofthepintlenozzle.

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Intheexpansion-deflectionnozzletheflowfromthechamberisdirectedradially

outwardawayfromthenozzleaxis.Theflowisturnedonacurvedcontourouter
divergingnozzlewall.
Thenozzleisshortinlengthandhassomeinternalobliqueshockwavelosses.
Thehotgasflowleavingthechamberexpandsaroundacentralplug.
Astheambientpressureisreduced,thehotgasflowfillsmoreandmoreofthenozzle

divergingsection.
Altitudecompensationisachievedbychangeinflow

boundaryandbychangesinthepressuredistributiononthe
outerwalls.
Pintlenozzlehaslighterweight,lowerpowerrequirements,

andhigherdeliveredspecificimpulse.

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Pintle Injector[11]

3.Comparission

3.1 Bell Nozzle


ADVANTAGES
Itiseasytodesignandhaslessstresscomponents.
Coolingiseasytoachieveinthesekindofnozzlesaswallsareofsimpletubular

constructionthatenablescoolinginastraightforwardway.
Itisbasicallyacylinderanhenceitiseasytomatchwithcombustionchamber.

DISADVANTAGES
Over-ExpansionThrustLoss.Theyareefficientonlyforonealtitudecondition.
Astheymostlyoperateatover-expandednozzlecondition,highflowinstabilityis

observed.Mayleadtouncertaintyorunsteadinessofthethrustdirectionand
dangeroushighfrequencywobble.
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3.2 ANNULAR
ADVANTAGES
Truncatedspikenozzlesarefarsmallerthantypicalbellnozzleforsameperformance

output.
Spikecanhavegreaterperformanceforagivenlength.
Noseparationisobservedatover-expandednozzleconditions.
Aerospikeengineusesimplegasgeneratorcyclewithalowerchamberpressurehence,

reducingtherisk.
Aerospikenozzlearesmallinsizeandcanbefittedinrocket,therebyreducingbasedrag.
ThrustVectoringiseasywithannularnozzles.Combustionchamberscanbecontrolled

individually,Vehiclemaneuveredcanbeachievedusingdifferentialthrustvectoring,
Eliminatesheavygimbalsandactuatorsusedtovarydirectionofnozzles.

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DISADVANTAGES
Centralspikeexperiencesfargreaterheatfluxesthandoesabellnozzle.
Itisdifficulttocoolcentralspikeandrequirescoolant.
Aerospikenozzleismorecomplexanddifficulttomanufacturethanbellnozzle.
Aerospikenozzlearemoreexpensive.
Noaerospikeenginehaseverflowninarocketapplication.

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32

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4 References
1.

Rocket nozzles,MechanicalandAerospaceEngineeringDepartment,Florida
InstituteofTechnology,D.R.Kirk.

2.

Rocket Propulsion Elements,8thedition,GeorgeP.SuttonandOscarBiblarz.

3.

http://www.aerospaceweb.org/design/aerospike/shapes.shtml

4.

Bell/Counter Nozzles,Georgiatechcollegeofengineering.

5.

Conical Nozzles,Georgiatechcollegeofengineering.

6.

Nozzle,RickyHinton.

7.

http://rohanverse.webnode.com/aerospike-engine/

8.

http://space.stackexchange.com/questions/1171/efficient-types-of-nozzles-used-in
-rockets
.

9.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nozzle

10.

www.brighthub.com

11.

http://www.tpub.com/engine3/en32-76.htm