Apollo Lunar Module Engine Exhaust Products

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Science  07 Nov 1969:
Vol. 166, Issue 3906, pp. 733-738
DOI: 10.1126/science.166.3906.733


Organic combustion products generated by the lunar module descent engine, which burns a 1:1 mixture of unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine fuel and nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer, have been analyzed. The major gaseous combustion products found were ammonia, water, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and nitric oxide. The minor products were acetylene, hydrogen cyanide, ethylene, formaldehyde, propadiene, ketene, cyanous acid, hydrazoic acid, various methylamines, acetaldehyde, methyl nitrite, formic acid, nitrous acid, butadiyne, nitrilohydrazines, nitromethane, and nitrosohydrazines with other oxidized derivatives of unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine and hydrazine. The ion intensities of the various species in all mass spectra were estimated as the following concentrations: the gases (NH3, H2O, CO, NO, O2, CO2, and NO2), 87.7 percent; compounds of C, H, and O, 6.0 percent; and compounds of C, H, and N (with traces of O), 5.8 percent.

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