Accession Number : ADA344774
Title : Laser-Supported Detonation Waves and Pulsed Laser Propulsion
Corporate Author : CALIFORNIA UNIV LIVERMORE RADIATION LAB
Personal Author(s) : Kare, Jordin T.
Report Date : JUL 1989
Pagination or Media Count : 10
Abstract : A laser thermal rocket uses the energy of a large remote laser, possibly ground-based, to heat an inert propellant and generate thrust. Use of a pulsed laser allows the design of extremely simple thrusters with very high performance compared to chemical rockets. The temperatures. pressures. and fluxes involved in such thrusters typically result in the creation of laser-supported detonation (LSD) waves. The thrust cycle thus involves a complex set of transient shock phenomena, including laser-surface interactions in the ignition of the LSD wave, laser-plasma interactions in the LSD wave itself, and high-temperature nonequilibrium chemistry behind the LSD wave. The SDIO Laser Propulsion Program is investigating these phenomena as part of an overall effort to develop the technology for a low-cost. Earth-to-orbit laser launch system. We will summarize the Program's approach to developing a high performance thruster and the double-pulse planar thruster.
Descriptors : *PULSED LASERS , *PROPULSION SYSTEMS , *DETONATION WAVES , CHEMICALS , PLASMAS(PHYSICS) , LASER BEAMS , PROPELLANTS , IGNITION , NONEQUILIBRIUM FLOW , THRUST , THRUSTERS , ROCKETS , THERMAL PROPULSION SYSTEMS.
Subject Categories : LASERS AND MASERS
ELECTRIC AND ION PROPULSION
Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE