Progress in Propulsion Physics Volume 2

Volume presentation

The book contains 46 selected, revised and thoroughly edited papers addressing various issues of propulsion physics written by world-known experts. The papers include critical analyses of previous studies and controversial aspects of novel propulsion concepts, new theoretical and experimental results and findings as well as numerous references to archival publications worldwide. The book is organized in 8 chapters: (1) Solid Rocket Propulsion; (2) Liquid Rocket Propulsion; (3) Hybrid Rocket Propulsion; (4) Air-Breathing Propulsion; (5) Detonation Engines; (6) Electric Thrusters; (7) Thrust Nozzles; and (8) Propulsion System and Subsystem Design. The volume was prepared as a reference for research scientists and practicing engineers in the ¦eld of aerospace propulsion.

EUCASS: The Association

The European Conference for AeroSpace Sciences, EUCASS ( is a nonprofit international association established in Belgium. It was founded in July 2006 to stimulate the development of pure and applied aerospace sciences in Europe. The purposes of EUCASS are scientific, technical, and educational. The association focuses on forefront science and cutting-edge technologies. It is at the service of Academia, Industry, Agencies, and other decision makers, by fostering communication and cooperation among them in order to reduce the time to market for innovations. The association helps young scientists to find internships outside their countries of origin and supplies information on mobility and job opportunities.

The base of EUCASS is European and includes Russia. Members from all other countries are welcome. Today, the association counts in excess of 500 members from over 30 different countries. It is a member of the International Astronautical Association (IAF) and is in the process of networking with European disciplinary associations Eccomas, Ercoftac, Euromech, and Euroturbo and with CEAS, the Council of European Aerospace Societies.

Among its notable activities, EUCASS has already organized three major first-ever conferences each attended by over 500 participants:
Moscow (July 2005) co-organized by ONERA and TsAGI with partial operational support from AAAF and the Russian Academy of Sciences;
Brussels (July 2007) co-organized by ULB and VKI; and
Versailles (July 2009) organized by the ASTECH Cluster.

It has also launched a series of high-level Aerospace Thematic Workshops dedicated to fundamental topics of great potential for aerospace applications, like that on flow and combustion control by plasmas. The first one was held in May 2007 at Varenna, Italy; the second edition followed in October 2009 at Les Houches Physics School in France.

The association’s mission is not limited to organizing its biennial conferences and workshops. One of its fundamental tasks is also to publish high quality monographs in the form of Book Series compiling the best scientific works presented. Since 2007, it has been in partnership with Torus Press for these proceedings; it also encourages authors to submit their regular scientific articles to the well established Journal of Aerospace Engineering Part G of SAGE Publications Ltd.


Luigi T. DeLuca, Professor of Aerospace Propulsion at Politecnico di Milano, Italy, leads the local SPLab laboratory specialized in combustion and ballistic characterization of energetic materials. He gained 30 years of experience in solid and hybrid rocket propulsion, is a member of the editorial committee of several international journals, and co-edited 8 books in rocket propulsion.

Christophe Bonnal, involved in launcher development for more than 25 years, has been responsible for Ariane 5 systems tests then head of future launchers in CNES; he is currently Senior Expert in the CNES Launcher Directorate. Member of the International Acadely of Astronautics, coordinator of the Space Transportation Committee within the Internationlal Astrinautical federation, coeditor of Acta Astronautica, Christophe Bonnal is General Secretary of the EUCASS association.

Oskar J. Haidn, since 1998 Deputy Director Research and Technology of DLR Institute of Space Propulsion in Lampoldshausen, heads the local Department of Technology whose activities cover all major topics of thrust chamber technologies of liquid propellant rocket engines. He holds several patents in the field and is author and coauthor of more than 150 journal articles and conference contributions.

Sergey M. Frolov, PhD, D.SC., is the Head of Department of Combustion and Explosion at Semenov Institute of Chemical Physics, and Professor at Moscow Physical Engineering Institute. He is an active research scientist in combustion and detonation physics and chemistry, an author of over 400 journal and conference papers and an editor of over 20 books.


EUCASS (European Conference for Aero-Space Sciences) is a scientific association at the service of research scientists, engineers, and decision makers active in aeronautical and space sciences.

EUCASS, which is an international nonprofit association under the Belgian law, addresses all topics of interest to aerospace, from research challenges to long-term programs and prospective. It organizes regular conferences, workshops, and meetings. Its goal is to attract the best specialists from Europe and elsewhere, and to create a commonwealth of interest and challenges where information and ideas circulate freely and swiftly, where the currently scattered European knowledge is exchanged much faster and cross-fertilized. EUCASS is the cradle that nurtures a friendly and lively community spirit among all players. It started its activities in 2005 by organizing the first-ever European conference in Moscow, followed at a biennial rate in Brussels and Versailles.

In order to contribute to the dissemination of scientific knowledge, we have launched this EUCASS Book Series, the first volume of which was dedicated to Propulsion Physics and presented a selection of the lectures given in Brussels in July 2007.

EUCASS is organized in several permanent Technical Committees (TC). One of them is the Propulsion Physics TC. Within the broad EUCASS framework, the specific purpose of the Propulsion Physics TC is to promote the technology, sciences, and arts of aerospace propulsion and to help those engaged in these pursuits to develop their skills and those of their students.

This second volume of the EUCASS Book Series on Advances in Aerospace Sciences is also dedicated to Propulsion Physics and includes a collection of the best papers presented at the third European Conference for Aerospace Sciences held in Versailles, France, July 06-10, 2009. About 1/3 of the total number of papers accepted for presentation at the conference was later selected by the volume editors and successively edited by an international body of peer reviewers.

The current book is the product of this long distillation process. The volume includes eight chapters covering most of the traditional aspects in aerospace propulsion as well as several innovative ones:

  • Chapter 1 Solid Rocket Propulsion
  • Chapter 2 Liquid and Gelled Rocket Propulsion
  • Chapter 3 Hybrid Rocket Propulsion
  • Chapter 4 Air-Breathing Propulsion
  • Chapter 5 Detonation Engines
  • Chapter 6 Electric Thrusters
  • Chapter 7 Thrust Nozzles
  • Chapter 8 Propulsion System and Subsystem Design


Special thanks are due to our sponsors, without which the 2009 conference would not have taken place: International Science and Technology Center (ISTC); European Space Agency (ESA); Office National d’Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (ONERA); SAFRAN Group; Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES); Thalès for providing financial and moral support.

It is our pleasure to thank for their valuable and patient support:

  • members of the Organizing Committee;
  • members of the International Advisory Committee; and
  • all conference participants including speakers, observers, and session chairs.

The present book would not have been possible without the support and careful work of the international college of reviewers purposely nominated for this task. The quality of any scientific book is largely due to the will of reviewers to share their expertise and knowledge with unknown colleagues from all over the world.

As a minor token of the editors’ appreciation for reviewers’ diligence and work, the names of all contributing reviewers are listed hereafter:

Patrick Alliot
William Anderson
Laura Appolloni
Valery Babuk
Branislav Basara
Valentin Basevich
André Beaurain
Andrey Belyaev
Luca Boccaletto
Anatolii Borisov
Max Calabro
Carmine Carmicino
Leonard Caveny
Franck Cauty
Nathalie Cesco
Helmut Ciezki
Erik Damback
Dmitry Davidenko
Bernard Desmet
Manuel Frey
Stany Gallier
Alon Gany
Robert Glick
Joseph Görgen
Yann Guelou
François Guery
Ashwany Gupta
Mohammed Habiballah
Habdellah Hadjadj
Stephen Heister
Thomas Jackson
Oliver Knab
Joachim Kretschmer
Herman Krier
Fabrice Lemoine
Ivett Leyva
Filippo Maggi
Yves Maisonneuve
Vladimir Markov
Francesco Nasuti
Benveniste Natan
Aurélie Nicole
Marcello Onofri
Gérard Ordonneau
Michael Oschwald
Jan Östlund
Dario Pastrone
Oleg Penyazkov
Yudin Petrov
Michael P|tzner
Timothy Pourpoint
Sergey Rashkowski
Grant Risha
Ilia Roisman
Robert Santoro
Victor Saren
Richard Schwane
Geoff Searby
Corin Segal
Evgeniy Sha|rovich
Toru Shimada
Dmitry Sidlerov
Valery Sinditskii
Travis Sippel
Henry Tan
Shashi Verma
Bernhard Weigand
Yen Ching Yu
Sergey Zhdan

The conference and this volume are the outcome of hard work of several dedicated teams, and we appreciate their valuable contributions. In particular, we acknowledge the assistance given at various stages by ASTECH Cluster employees in organizing the conference and the staff of TORUS PRESS Publishers for the excellent production of this volume. It is worth noting that while working on this volume TORUS PRESS replotted over 880 figures, reconfigured over 50 tables, and reformatted over 1000 references! by including their full bibliographic data ! to follow the highest book quality standards and to keep the book style homogeneous and attractive. In addition, a special care was taken to unify the terminology, abbreviations and measuring units all throughout the volume and to avoid various inconsistencies in the original manuscripts.

We sincerely wish that this joint international effort will help all readers to gain a better understanding of aerospace propulsion, and to further appreciate and widen the fascinating horizons of the aerospace world.

June 2011, The Volume Editors

Citing a paper

The way to cite a paper published in Progress in Propulsion Physics volume 2 is the following: author(s), title of the article, in Progress in Propulsion Physics vol.2 [number of the article], edited by L. DeLuca, C. Bonnal, O. Haidn and S. Frolov, published by EDP Sciences (, [DOI of the article].