In this study, we numerically examine thrust performance of the linear aerospike nozzle micro-thruster for various nozzle spike lengths and flow parameters in order to identify optimal geometry(s) and operating conditions. Decomposed hydrogen-peroxide is used as the monopropellant in the studies. Performance is characterized for different flow rates (Reynolds numbers) and aerospike lengths, and the impact of micro-scale viscous forces is assessed. It is found that 2-D full micro-aerospike efficiencies can exceed axisymmetric micro-nozzle efficiencies by as much as 10%; however, severe penalties are found to occur for truncated spikes at low Reynolds numbers.


This is the published version of A. Zilic, D. Hitt, and A. Alexeenko. 2007. “Numerical Simulations of Supersonic Flow in a Linear Aerospike Micro Nozzle”. First published as an AIAA 37th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference and Exhibit Paper and is available online at: http://arc.aiaa.org/doi/pdf/10.2514/6.2007-3984.

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