Investigation of Decomposition Characteristics of Gaseous and Liquid Nitrous Oxide
Final rept., 1 Aug-15 Dec 1973
AIR FORCE WEAPONS LAB KIRTLAND AFB NM
Pagination or Media Count:
This report is a compilation of data obtained from Rocketdyne Division and Pratt and Whitney Aircraft Division. The Rocketdyne study examined liquid nitrous oxide stability with contaminant materials ranging from metal oxides to polymers at a temperature just below the critical point. Based on gas chromatographic analysis, negligible decomposition of the N2O occurred in all cases. One material in these tests which showed degradation was polymer AF-E- 124X developed for use with N2O4. In general, it is concluded that N2O stability to catalytic and chemical decomposition is greatly increased in the liquid versus the gaseous state. The Pratt and Whitney effort concentrated on the decomposition characteristics of both gaseous and liquid nitrous oxide. The experimental program evaluated the ignition, flame speeds of induced reactions, and quenching characteristics of the decomposition reaction. The results demonstrate that gaseous N2O can be ignited either by rapid compression or electric spark at elevated pressures. They also indicate that nitrous oxide may safely be handled under extreme conditions in the cooled liquid state but that great hazards exist in the gaseous condition at elevated pressure andor temperature.
- Physical Chemistry