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SBIR/STTR

Rotating Cavitation Supression, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Rotating Cavitation Supression, Phase I
FTT proposes development of a rotating cavitation (RC) suppressor for liquid rocket engine turbopump inducers. Cavitation instabilities, such as rotating cavitation, have caused severe damage to bearings and seals, fatigue failures, and even catastrophic failures of rocket engines. In addition, cavitation instabilities hamper suction performance, which prevents developments related to increasing payload by reducing overall vehicle weight with thinner propellant tank walls. An RC suppressor will allow for increased suction performance and for improved turbopump reliability by reducing loads on the rotor support system. This technology has applications for any rocket engine turbopump or commercial pump. FTT's approach will mature the conceptual design for the Slotted Annular Cavitation Suppressor (SACS), compare results of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) of a baseline inducer with and without the SACS, create a test plan, and generate a conceptual design of a test article to test the SACS. Phase I will advance this technology from TRL 2 to TRL 3. Phase II will culminate with water testing of the RC suppressor and data reduction, and will advance it to TRL 5. More »

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