BS in Aerospace Engineering
Aerospace Engineering Department
Dianne J. DeTurris
A Methanol-Oxygen liquid rocket engine was designed and manufactured under the California Polytechnic State University Aerospace Department by students in a graduate level rocket propulsion class. The SMORE, previously known as the KORE, is now in an ongoing testing and developing stage with plans to incorporate it into the aerospace undergraduate propulsion lab. Phase 2 of the liquid rocket engine development is to produce a start-up procedure that will improve the safety due to manual operation and poor ignition conditions. A propane ignition system along with the implementation of electrically operated solenoid valves to control the fuels and oxidizer were the preliminary approach to meeting the objective. However, after testing the propane ignition system it was found to have several shortcomings and instead a simpler re-designed spark igniter became the proven method for ignition without the need of an extra priming fuel, such as propane. Overall the objectives of the second phase of the SMORE were met and proven through live tests.