Determination of the decomposition behavior of double-base propellants at low temperatures.
Bestimmung des Zersetzungsverhaltens von zwei-basigen Treibstoffen bei niedriger Temperatur
Thermal and mechanical stability are very important characterstics of energetic materials used as ingredients of propellants compositions. For the determination of the thermal decomposition behavior of solid double base propellants, usually gravimetric, calorimetric, and chemical methods are being employed. At ICT, the descreasing rates of stabilizers determined by high-performance chromatography at different temperatures are successfully used as a mean to forecast the chemical life time of propellants containing nitric esters. On the other hand, the mechanical properties are evaluated by measuring the tensile strength with a more or less accuracy. In the last years, the increasing performance of the gel-permeation chromatography enabled the determination of the molecular weight and the molecular weight distribution of nitrocellulose in different propellants. In this connection a linear relationship between temperature and depolymerization rate was obtained. This relationship correspon ds fairly well with the stabilizer depletion rate and the drop in the mechanical properties.