Butler, G. W. Olin Rocket Research Company, Redmond, Washington.
- Resistojet thrusters
- Arcjet thrusters
- Links to Primary Literature
- Additional Readings
Vehicular propulsion that involves electrical heating to raise the energy level of the propellant. In contrast, chemical rockets use the chemical energy of one or more propellants to heat and accelerate the decomposition products (monopropellants) or combustion products (bipropellants) for thrusting purposes. In both instances, the high-energy propellant gases are exhausted through a nozzle where they are accelerated to a high velocity (Ue), and thrust is produced by reaction. By decoupling the heating or energy addition process from the restraints of propellant chemistry considerations, electrothermal devices can be operated on a wide variety of materials, many of which would not otherwise be considered to be propellants. Water and space station liquid-waste streams are two examples of such propellants being considered for electrothermal propulsion purposes. See also: Rocket propulsion
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