Phase relationships involving RDX and common solid propellant binders

J. Eric Boyer, P. W. Brown, K. K. Kuo

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The solubilities of the common propellant ingredients acetyl triethyl citrate (ATEC) and cellulose acetate butyrate (CAB) and their effects on RDX (cyclotrimethylenetrinitramine) unit cell dimensions were investigated. If there is appreciable solid solubility, solutions will form and will have enthalpies of fusion, melting temperatures, and other characteristics different from those of pure RDX. It is desirable to establish the properties of such mixtures when designing new propellant formulations. Samples were aged at an elevated temperature to speed the formation of solid solutions. A least-squares analysis of X-ray diffraction data was used to obtain the lattice parameters from which unit cell volume and solubility was deduced. Both ATEC and CAB caused an expansion of the unit cell, indicating the formation of a solid solution. The limit of solubility in the ATEC/RDX mixture appeared to be approximately 13 wt% ATEC, while the CAB/RDX limit is above 16 wt% CAB. In both mixes, the cell volume expanded linearly with increasing proportion of binder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-84
Number of pages6
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996
EventProceedings of the 1995 MRS Fall Symposium - Boston, MA, USA
Duration: Nov 27 1995Dec 1 1995

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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