Analysis of Thermal Stratification of Liquid Hydrogen in Rocket Propellant Tanks
In large liquid-hydrogen-fueled rocket vehicles, a serious problem ,in propellant utilization arises because of the tendency of liquid hydrogen to thermally stratify in a layer near the liquid-vapor interface. If the relatively warm propellant in this layer is introduced into the rocket propellant feed system, pump cavitation is likely to occur with the resulting probable destruction of the flight vehicle. Some means is required, therefore, to prevent such an occurrence. Before the problem of hydrogen stratification can be solved, however, an understanding of the stratification mechanism must be gained, and some means for predicting the occurrence and severity of stratification devised.
KeywordsThermal Stratification Liquid Hydrogen Wall Heat Flux Thermal Layer NASA Lewis Research
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