Glynne-Jones, Peter, Coletti, M., White, N.M., Gabriel, S.B. and Bramanti , C.
A feasibility study on using inkjet technology, micropumps, and MEMs as fuel injectors for bipropellant rocket engines.
Acta Astronautica, 67, (1-2), . (doi:10.1016/j.actaastro.2010.01.027).
Control over drop size distributions, injection rates, and geometrical distribution of fuel and oxidizer sprays in bi-propellant rocket engines has the potential to produce more efficient, more stable, less polluting rocket engines. This control also offers the potential of an engine that can be throttled, working efficiently over a wide range of output thrusts. Inkjet printing technologies, MEMS fuel atomizers, and piezoelectric injectors similar in concept to those used in diesel engines are considered for their potential to yield a new, more active injection scheme for a rocket engine. Inkjets are found to be unable to pump at sufficient pressures, and have possibly dangerous failure modes. Active injection is found to be feasible if high pressure drop along the injector plate is used. A conceptual design is presented and its basic behavior assessed.
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