Questions tagged [nozzle]

Questions regarding the rocket engine nozzles, semi-open compartments of various shapes and sizes into which propellant components are injected by their own pressure or with a help of a turbine, often preheated and ignited to start a thermochemical reaction in the nozzle's combustion chamber, producing thrust with expansion into gases and ejecting them through the nozzle's exhaust as plumes, accelerating the rocket to high-mach velocities.

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36 votes
9 answers
13k views

Why do rocket nozzles flare?

Why do rocket nozzles open wider at the end than, let's say, get narrower? Let me explain: A jet engine works by having this amazing thing called a combustion chamber. The combustion chamber ignites ...
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2 votes
1 answer
456 views

How might an internal combustion engine generate substantial external thrust?

This answer mentions the proposed use of an internal combustion engine (ICE) in ULA's ACES upper stage to extract energy from LH2/LOX in multiple forms for multiple uses, which is described further in ...
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33 votes
3 answers
6k views

Why do the exhaust flames from cryogenic stage engines appear to be separated from the nozzle?

Why do the exhaust flames from cryogenic stage engines appear to be separated from the nozzle?
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12 votes
1 answer
8k views

How are rocket nozzles made?

How are rocket nozzles made?? Is it a huge chunk of metal that they cut down or is it a "pipe" that they reshape? Or something else??
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5 votes
2 answers
4k views

How can phenolic (resin?) handle rocket engine nozzle temperatures?

I just saw @OrganicMarble's survey answer that bravely tackles the wide variety of technologies used to make different types of rocket nozzles. One item caught my eye: Nozzles may also be made of ...
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18 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why the non-symmetric design of rocket nozzles?

Although I have seen many perfectly symmetric nozzles, I have also seen designs such as this (Virgin Galactic) which is only symmetrical about one axis: Why is this?
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13 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why does the YF-75D nozzle have such a strong spiral pattern?

Why does the YF-75D nozzle material have such a strong spiral pattern? Is it a result/biproduct of a manufacturing process only, or does it have some specific function? edit: The last, cropped ...
  • 148k
10 votes
1 answer
539 views

How can firing a Space Shuttle OMS engine below 21 km cause its nozzle to "collapse"?

This answer to Can the space shuttle use OMS engines during landing? says: No and quotes Section 3.7 of the Orbital Maneuvering System Workbook; OMS 21002 October 10, 2006, Final version, USA006500 ...
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5 votes
1 answer
441 views

Why are exhaust flames "jumping around" the bases of the Falcon-9 engine nozzles; NROL-76? [duplicate]

I see something interesting the webcast of the NROL-76 launch. At around T+00:00:55 it looks like flames from the exhaust start jumping around the bases of the ring ...
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3 votes
1 answer
1k views

Why is the Merlin 1D Vacuum nozzle bigger than the Merlin 1D nozzle?

I know that the Merlin 1D is used in the Falcon first stage, and the Merlin 1D Vacuum in the second stage, but I can't find any information as to why the nozzle has to be bigger in vacuum. I guess ...
34 votes
2 answers
5k views

Why is the X-37B's large nozzle offset to right from the spacecraft's mid-plane?

Perhaps I'm naive to think that the single large nozzle at the back of the X-37B is a nozzle for an engine, but regardless of the purpose, gas exiting from a nozzle will produce thrust. Is the X-37B's ...
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15 votes
2 answers
3k views

How hot do rocket engine nozzles get?

What temperatures are encountered by the nozzles of rocket engines like those in SpaceX's Merlin series? Radiative or regenerative cooling, atmosphere or vacuum. There's plenty of info about exhaust ...
9 votes
1 answer
713 views

Sea level static test of an upper stage possible?

As we know that for the upper stages of the rocket, we need high propulsion efficiency thereby high specific impulse. For that we employ a nozzle with higher expansion ratios. Now, if we conduct the ...
6 votes
0 answers
247 views

Could ablative material sublimation slow down a spacecraft?

Thought experiment illustrated below: Suppose a weird spacecraft entering Earth's atmosphere from low Earth orbit, payload first. Behind it there is an inverted nozzle shaped structure, attached with ...
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4 votes
1 answer
599 views

What were/are the stingiest and most generous vacuum nozzle? (records for the smallest and largest expansion ratios)

Vacuum nozzles are huge compared to their sea-level or atmospheric counterparts, as can be seen by comparing the first stage engines on an Electron or Falcon-9 to their second stages, where a big ...
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20 votes
2 answers
3k views

Where does the thrust act in a rocket engine and how is it transferred to rocket structure?

A rocket engine is basically a device that generates a high pressure inside the chamber and the pressure difference creates a force. A nozzle helps in effectively accelerating the flow and increases ...
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11 votes
2 answers
2k views

Convergent-Divergent / De Laval Nozzle Dimensions

I'm creating a super sonic ping pong ball cannon like the one recently shown on Mythbusters. I plan on using pressure rated steel pipe so it's as safe as realistically possible and showing it off at ...
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9 votes
1 answer
512 views

In space, how far from the nozzle is the exhaust from a space-craft capable of causing damage?

I suspect the question may be a trifle subjective; dependent upon the nature of the propulsion system, the energy levels, as also the nature of the object impinged The exhaust from a space-craft is ...
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8 votes
1 answer
386 views

TR-106 under-expansion in sea-level test?

I was looking at pictures of a test fire of a TR-106 engine, and it appears to be fairly under-expanded. What's the reason for this? Does this somehow increase efficiency with this specific engine?
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7 votes
2 answers
500 views

What was the first rocket with de Laval (convergent-divergent) nozzle to fly?

Rocket engine Wikipedia article states that Goddard was the first to use a De Laval nozzle on a solid-propellant (gunpowder) rocket engine, doubling the thrust and increasing the efficiency by a ...
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is there a diagram of different nozzle diameters to scale?

I am looking for a diagram that shows the different diameters of various nozzle openings, including Rocketdyne's F1 (150 inches) SpaceX's Merlin (66 inches), the Air Force's Delta IV Heavy, and NPO ...
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5 votes
2 answers
415 views

Issue with units for a rocket nozzle throat area problem

I'm working through How to Design, Build, and Test Small Liquid-Fuel Rocket Engines. The guide explains calculating a rocket nozzle throat area using Eq. (7): $$A_t = \frac{w_t}{P_t} \sqrt{\frac{R ...
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5 votes
1 answer
962 views

What's the nature of hoop stresses on a rocket nozzle?

On a rocket nozzle, are the stresses (namely hoop stresses) from pressure differentials compressive or tensile? Obviously, in a combustion chamber, the pressure inside is greater than outside. As ...
5 votes
2 answers
582 views

What factors determine the altitude at which rocket exhaust plumes start blooming hugely?

The images below are from a much larger set of photos in Spaceflight Now's August 8, 2019 article Photos: Atlas 5 paints the sky with spectacular sunrise launch. They show several effects related to ...
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5 votes
1 answer
541 views

Was a large-nozzle variant of the J-2 ever considered?

The J-2 engine used on the upper stages of the Saturn launchers has a specific impulse in vacuum of 421 seconds. This is substantially lower than that of the smaller RL10, 440-460 seconds depending on ...
5 votes
1 answer
2k views

What are the pros and cons of expansion-deflection nozzle?

From the Wikipedia, E-D nozzle works similarly to aerospike nozzle which compensates the exhaust gas in the atmosphere to increase specific impulse.
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4 votes
1 answer
362 views

Did I see the Formosat-5 F9 2nd stage nozzle vibrate at about 2Hz at SECO-1?

Did I see the F9 2nd stage nozzle vibrate at about 2Hz at SECO-1? It looked like the bottom of the bell vibrated in an elliptical shape. Did I imagine that? Has this happened before? $\hskip 3.4 cm$...
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4 votes
1 answer
512 views

Are there rocket nozzles that use non-elliptical shapes?

I was reading this question: Why the non-symmetric design of rocket nozzles? Which got me thinking, have there been any nozzles that don't end in an ellipse? Even the one in that question ends in a ...
3 votes
2 answers
2k views

Can someone tell me the effect on performance of overexpanded nozzles?

I understand that underexpanded nozzles lose efficiency, due to untapped potential in the gas before exiting the nozzle, but what happens to overexpanded nozzles? I understand that the pressure of the ...
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3 votes
0 answers
186 views

Why use nozzle extensions for ULA's Vulcan; why not make them this long in the first place?

This answer to What is the difference between the Vulcan 562 configuration and the Vulcan 5H2 ("Heavy") configuration? explains that the 2nd stage nozzles were modified by extending them, ...
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2 votes
1 answer
188 views

What expansion ratio is the best for mars surface level engines?

What expansion ratio is the best for mars surface level engines? For launches from Earth, first stage nozzles are much shorter than second stage nozzles because of Earth's high sea-level pressure. For ...
2 votes
2 answers
365 views

What causes those curtain-like hot and cool spots in the 2nd stage nozzle of this Electron ELaNa 19 launch?

Here is a GIF that I made of the recent Electron Launch from frame grabs in the Rocket Lab video ELaNa 19 Launch - 12/16/2018 It is about 4M, so it won't fit in SE's normal image import. Frames are ...
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2 votes
1 answer
353 views

How is the exit velocity of the flow in a sounding rocket nozzle?

How is the exit velocity of the flow in a sounding rocket nozzle? Is it subsonic or supersonic? Is a de Laval nozzle required for sounding rockets? Bonus Question: What about Model Rockets?
2 votes
2 answers
800 views

How much efficiency is lost from a fixed De Laval nozzle when modified for atmospheric use?

Fixed nozzles designed for vacuum are larger/broader than those designed for atmospheric or combined air/space use, which have less flanged nozzles due to the drag a larger flange would incur in the ...
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2 votes
1 answer
689 views

Under-expanded nozzle at sea level - is it a problem?

I'm designing a solid rocket motor with a fixed pressure in the combustion chamber $p_{cc} = 70~bar$. When it comes to the choice of the right nozzle, I have to consider the proper expansion ratio, in ...
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2 votes
0 answers
112 views

Deep throttling in sea level engines

In this excellent answer, asked for merlin engines deep throttling in first stage and produced here. To help you understand where the cross over point is, here is some math for understanding the ...
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1 vote
1 answer
988 views

What is a typical sea-level engine nozzle/expansion ratio? What about vacuum engines?

On a sea-Level engine, what is the average nozzle ratio? What about an upper-stage vacuum engine?
user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

J-2 rocket nozzle length

The total length of the J-2 rocket engine is 133 inches, but what is its nozzle length from throat to exit?
1 vote
0 answers
84 views

Need help finding a clean expression for exit velocity [duplicate]

I'm trying to calculate a engine burning LOX and ethanol (96%) and for that I am using both CEAgui, a GUI for NASA's CEA (Chemical Equilibrium with Applications) code Sutton's Rocket Propulsion ...