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Assessment of Variability in the Thermophysical Properties of Rocket Propellant RP-1



Tara J. Fortin


Density, speed of sound, and viscosity has been measured for eleven orthogonal blends of the rocket propellant RP-1. Density and speed of sound were measured over the temperature range of 278 K to 343 K, while viscosity was measured from 263 K to 373 K. All measurements were made at atmospheric pressure. The density and sound speed data were used to derive adiabatic compressibilities and those results are also reported. Varying, yet significant, degrees of variability over the eleven RP-1 samples were observed for all reported properties. The largest variability was observed for viscosity. The measurement data were also compared to previously reported results for a twelfth RP-1 sample and to the predictions of an existing surrogate mixture model. Discrepancies were observed that seem to indicate a need for the development of a more general model to capture the whole range of thermophysical property variability that is possible with the RP-1 fuel.
Energy and Fuels


Adiabatic Compressibility, Density, Dynamic Viscosity, Kerosene, Kinematic Viscosity, Speed of Sound, Stabinger viscometer, Vibrating-tube densimeter


Fortin, T. (2012), Assessment of Variability in the Thermophysical Properties of Rocket Propellant RP-1, Energy and Fuels, [online], (Accessed July 13, 2024)


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Created June 14, 2012, Updated November 10, 2018