In this section we will see what are propellants, how they produce thrust to propel the rockets and the different types of propellants.
Propellants are chemicals which are used to produce the thrust required to propel the rockets.
All propellants are made up of two parts:
Fuel (or reducer)
where oxidizer is an agent, which produces oxygen for combination with the fuel. Fuel reacts with the oxygen and produces gas for propulsion.
The fuel used in space vehicles is very much different from the normal fuel in respect to the following properties:
Propellants on burning give large amount of gaseous products whereas fuel does not.
Propellants have very high calorific value as compared to normal household fuel.
Propellants are costlier than household fuel.
Depending on the physical state of fuel and oxidiser, propellants are classified as:
Let us proceed further and study the various types of propellants in detail.