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Re: Propellant fluid dynamics at zero-g

Ed Cole wrote:

I read a book called "P3D to P3G" {yep, the same one} and it says in the first article near the end in the section called Propulsion Systems {and I quote}:  "Helium gas from a high pressure storage tank is reduced to the system operating pressure by a regulator...snip...Helium is then fed to the propellant tanks through redundant check valves to force the propellant into the motor.  Ullage is provided by spinning the spacecraft up before and during each burn to assure proper flow."
So the main force that causes fuel to flow into the engine is helium gas pressure.  Simple, huh!

Wayne replies:

The question being discussed is NOT what force causes the fuel to flow.  The question is how to ensure under all circumstances that the flow in the fuel lines is always fuel instead of pressurized helium.  It's really NOT that simple considering that force vector on the fuel changes considerably when the motor is activated.

(I apologize if this has been answered several times already...I read the digest)

Wayne Estes W9AE
Mundelein, IL, USA

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