Throat flow modelling of expansion deflection nozzles

NV Taylor, CM Hempsell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Modelling of the supersonic flow within a rocket nozzle of both conventional and expansion deflection (ED) design is well handled by Method of Characteristics based algorithms. This approach provides both a prediction of the flowfield, and allows efficient optimisation of nozzle shape with respect to length. However, the Method of Characteristics requires a solution of the transonic flow through the nozzle throat to provide initial conditions, and the accuracy of the description of the transonic flow will clearly affect the overall accuracy of the complete nozzle flow calculation. However, it is relatively simple to show that conventional analytical methods for this process break down when applied to the more complex throat genometry of ED nozzles. This requires the use of a time marching solution methods, which allows the analysis of the flow within this region even on such advanced configurations. This paper demonstrates this capability, outlines a general method for ED nozzle throat geometric definition, and examines the effect of various throat parameters on the permissible range of ED contours. It is found that the design of length optimised ED nozzles is highly sensitive to small changes in these parameters, and hence they must be selected with care.
Translated title of the contributionThroat flow modelling of expansion deflection nozzles
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242 - 251
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the British Interplanetary Society
Volume57 (7/8)
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2004

Bibliographical note

Publisher: British Interplanetary Society

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