"Solid Rocket Thrust Vector Control"

by Aerojet Solid Propulsion Company, Hercules Inc., Thiokol Chemical, United Technology Center (United Aircraft Corp.), and NASA Lewis Research Center scientists and engineers


Solid Rocket Thrust Vector Control

by Aerojet Solid Propulsion Company, Hercules Inc., Thiokol Chemical, United Technology Center (United Aircraft Corp.), and NASA Lewis Research Center scientists and engineers

This heavy, 204-page textbook represents the last word in guidance and steering of spacecraft vehicles during the launch phase.  It covers methods of superimposing a side force on the motor thrust, which achieves a moment about he vehicle center of gravity.  Both flexible joint and liquid injection systems are discussed in detail. 

You can learn how to design a successful flexible joint and insulate it against hot motor gases.  You'll also get an education about liquid-injection system design, including types of injectants, piping, valves, storage tanks and pressurization systems.  (The text also covers the effect of injectant and erosion at the injection port, and the effect of injection on pressure distribution within the nozzle.)

Design problems with flexible joints have been associated with the difficulty in establishing the envelope for the moveable nozzle; definition of the actuator power requirements to vector the moveable nozzle; definition of allowable properties for the elastomer and the reinforcement; adhesive bonding of the elastomer to the reinforcements; test methods that adequately simulate the motor operating conditions; and quality control inspection of the molded joint.  This thick book covers each of these engineering design challenges.

Liquid injection steering systems have design problems associated with the definition of the maximum steering-force duty cycle; determination of the optimum location and geometry of the injector valves; and incompatibility of the injectant with many of the materials used for the nozzle walls, seals, and injectant pressurization system.  The monograph gives emphasis to those areas where specific technical approaches have solved design and development problems.

Chapters give comprehensive attention to these key topics, and several others:

  • Configuration vs motor requirements
  • Design parameters controlling response of the mechanisms
  • Material selection
  • System design
  • Structural and thermal analysis
  • Manufacturing
  • Testing (both nondestructive and destructive)
  • Inspection
All aspects of performance, structural, thermal, and physical boundary requirements are explained.  The handbook also covers flexible joint nozzles and liquid injection thrust vector control (LITVC).

This is exactly the practical information you need to design and build a high-technology, state-of-the-art composite solid propellant rocket motor steering system, whether you're a professional or "amateur" experimenter. 

The contents are the result of more than 30 years of investigations by the world's largest solid propellant chemical engineers, scientists, technicians, and propulsion contractors.  Literally millions and millions of dollars were spent obtaining this critical data. 

This seems to be the most complete and comprehensive book ever written about how to design, build, inspect, and test solid engine thrust vector control systems.  Study this exceptional text and you'll learn more than you ever imagined possible about the subject. 

Plus, there's a huge glossary of nomenclature, symbols, and definitions; several pages of technical references  ... and MUCH more not mentioned here!

Need we say there's abundant (and essential!) algebraic formulae and equations included (get out your slide rule!), working with a wide variety of common and complex grain geometries and motor designs?

And it has more than 60 superb illustrations, photos, figures, engineering drawings, tables, charts, and graphs.  Her are a few (smaller-than-in-the-book) examples:

Typical illustrations from the book (smaller than actual size)

Hard to find and now long out-of-print, this new limited edition has been republished by the Rocket Science Institute.  It's printed with a high-resolution laser printer (not photocopied) on high-quality, bright-white, acid-free paper for years of reference use.  204 pages, large and easy-to-read 11" x 8-1/2" size. 

ISBN 1-878628-27-5.     $27.95

Priority Mail Postage US $3.85            Global Priority Mail (Canada / Mexico) US$7.00          Global Priority Mail International US$9.00.

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Nitrate-type Propellants Group