In ME 140: Advanced Thermal Systems, our research team was tasked with analyzing and improving a hybrid rocket motor, which combines a liquid oxidizer with a fixed bed of solid fuel, with a focus on optimizing our motor’s specific impulse. We began in MATLAB, estimating theoretical values to set a baseline for future performance. To fabricate the solid propellent, we turned and milled high density polyethylene (HDPE) stock according to different fuel grain designs. We also designed and machined a new converging-diverging nozzle out of graphite. All of our design iterations were tested in the course test fire system, and produced increasingly successfully results.
Heidi Peterson, Aidan Biggar,
Amanda Guerra, Sam Lisbonne
ME 140: Advanced Thermal Systems
Turning (HDPE & graphite)
CAD (SolidWorks & AdobeIllustrator)
Theoretical analysis (MATLAB)