Evaluation of a Reactive-Heat-Pipe Employing an Arterial Wick
Interim technical rept.
PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIV STATE COLLEGE DEPT OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING
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This report describes a theoretical and experimental study of the use of arterial wicks in conjunction with a reactive-heat-pipe combustor for the lithium-sulfurhexafluoride reactant combination. The theory suggests substantial increases in allowable wick power densities to levels on the order of MWsq m when arterial wicks are used, improving the compactness of the combustor system. Tests were conducted to determine maximum wick power densities. A 15 kW combustor was used, employing two arterial wick assemblies with a design power density of 4MWsq m. The results indicated only a small improvement of the maximum power density over conventional wicks 310-440 kWsq m. The findings suggest that combustion rates were very nonuniform over the wick surface for this test configuration. The use of wick designs with a smaller aspect ratio is proposed as a method of avoiding the nonuniform combustion problem in order to achieve the full potential of the arterial wick configuration.
- Combustion and Ignition