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Numerical Simulation and Contour Design of Aerospike Nozzle: a Behavioural Study on Truncation Effects of Nozzle

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The objective of this paper is to present a design and an analysis procedure for a highly efficient aerospike nozzle that uses Liquid Oxygen and Liquid Hydrogen (LOX/LH2) as fuel for a Single Stage to Orbit (SSTO) spacecraft. This paper provides a simple method to design an aerospike nozzle contour in addition to the results of the Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis carried out for this nozzle with and without truncation. The results have been compared with the theoretical values, and the changes in specific thrust with different level of truncation have been shown. The geometry of the nozzle has been created using the method of characteristics and python codes, and flow analysis have been carried out using ANSYS FLUENT for the optimum working condition of the nozzle. The nozzles have been able to achieve excellent altitude compensation, and the nozzle with 40% truncation has come out to be the most efficient.
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Aerospike; Single Stage to Orbit; Truncation; Method of Characteristics; Flow Analysis; Altitude Compensation

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