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13

The hard part is that $P_e$ isn't a completely independent variable. As the gas expands past the throat, thermal energy is being converted into kinetic energy. The gas cools down and speeds up. So if you shorten the nozzle (creating an underexpanded flow), there is greater pressure at the exit (good). But the exhaust speed $v_e$ is lower (bad). The $\...


6

Until Masten Space Systems reveals the exact composition of the propellants, we can only speculate on the combinations they used. Based on what you have presented in question we can rule out options one by one, but we cannot be 100% sure especially for fuels because if we miss oxidizer than we will miss fuel to. The smoking gun here is a sentence “prepared ...


2

tl;dr: I see that comments below the question by the OP argue against this being a deal-breaker problem but I'm going to point it out anyway as a partial answer. Any engine using "sand" as a reaction mass will have to avoid any significant production of silica nanoparticles so large that they are not accelerated in the nozzle. Assuming a perfect, ...


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