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Proceedings Paper

Dual wavelength Raman spectroscopic analysis of solid rocket propellant for the detection of stabilizer decay (Conference Presentation)

Paper Abstract

Energetic nitrogen-based compounds utilized in solid rocket propellants break down under typical environmental conditions. The breakdown of these energetic propellant compounds requires stabilizing additives to absorb excess acids that form. These chemical changes result in a reduction of stabilizers and an increase of inert compounds over time which decrease propellant performance. Vibrational spectroscopic techniques such as Raman can detect changes in chemical concentrations due to the strong spectrum that these compounds demonstrate. In this study two wavelengths, 532 nm and 783 nm, are used to analyze the Raman spectra of propellant samples to characterize the changes to compounds over time. Computational techniques are demonstrated to mitigate fluorescence and single out the ratio of chemical peaks specific to stabilizer compounds. In addition, fluorescence in the 532 nm spectrum is examined as a method for characterizing propellant compounds, as 2NDPA traditionally has more fluorescence than MNA, and the 532 nm Raman system traditionally detects more fluorescence than the 785 nm Raman system. Detection of the stabilizer MNA in concentrations of greater than .70% and lower than .40% are demonstrated. Raman spectroscopy is shown to provide a rapid method for analyzing high and low concentrations of stabilizer compounds to determine the remaining viability of propellant.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 September 2019
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Proc. SPIE 11123, Photonic Fiber and Crystal Devices: Advances in Materials and Innovations in Device Applications XIII, 111230L (9 September 2019);
Show Author Affiliations
Carlton W. Farley III, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
Paul Ruffin, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
Jonathan Mills, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
Sandra Sadate-Moualeu, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
Michael Curley, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
James Parker, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (United States)
Aschalew Kassu, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)
Christopher Marshall, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (United States)
Jeremy Rice, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (United States)
Brian McDonald, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (United States)
Anup Sharma, Alabama A&M Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11123:
Photonic Fiber and Crystal Devices: Advances in Materials and Innovations in Device Applications XIII
Shizhuo Yin; Ruyan Guo, Editor(s)

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