Liquid Rocket Engines: Emerging Technologies in Liquid Propulsion - Online Short Course (20 Hours, Starts 15 Sept 2020) 15 September - 15 October 2020 Online

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This course will be now be offered online instead of at the 2020 Propulsion and Energy Forum.

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Course Hours:
From September 15-October 15
2-Hour Lectures on Tuesdays and Thursdays
1300–1500 hrs Eastern Time

Liquid propulsion systems are critical to launch vehicle and spacecraft performance, and mission success. This 20-hour course, taught by a team of government, industry, academia and international experts, will cover emerging technologies in liquid propulsion and topics of interest in launch vehicle and spacecraft propulsion; propulsion system design and performance; green bipropellants and monopropellants, advances in additive manufacturing and their implications towards emerging liquid rocket engines. Additionally, the advances in cryogenic fuel storage and turbomachinery in liquid propulsion are covered.

Key Topics

  • Rocket Propulsion Fundamentals
  • Rocket Fuels & Oxidizers Definition and Characterization
  • Structural Considerations in Rocket Engine Design, including Additive Manufacturing
  • Rocket Engine Testing
  • Emerging Technologies in Cryogenic Fuel Storage
  • Advances in Turbomachinery
  • Green Propellants
  • Microsat, Nanosat and Cubesat Propulsion[
  • Scroll down for full detailed outline below

Who Should Attend 

This course is intended for students, engineers, and managers involved in liquid propulsion component and system design, development, testing, analysis, program management, contracts or certification for flight.

AIAA CEUs are available for this course.


Please contact Jason Cole if you have any questions about courses and workshops at AIAA forums.

  • Rocket Propulsion Fundamentals
    • History of Propulsion/Overview of Components
    • Performance and Design Considerations
    • Rocket Classifications
    • Regeneratively Cooled Chambers
  • Rocket Fuels & Oxidizers Definition and Characterization
    • Definitions
    • Exposure & Handling Guidelines
    • Desirable Physical Properties
    • Survey of Potential Fuels & Additives
  • Structural Considerations in Rocket Liquid Engine Design
    • Failure Modes of Structures
    • Standard and State-of-the-Art Structural Finite Element and Fatigue Life Analysis
    • Blanching and Hydrogen Embrittlement
  • Traditional and Advanced Manufacturing of Engines and Components
    • Overview of Traditional Manufacturing Techniques
    • Advanced Manufacturing Techniques
    • Additive Manufacturing Techniques in Liquid Rocket Engines
    • Certification of Additive Manufacturing
  • Rocket Engine Testing
    • Test Facility Description
    • Testing Operational Aspects (Pre-Test/Test Day/Post-Test)
  • Green BiPropellants for LRE
    • Why Green?
    • Applications & System Design Considerations
    • Green Propellant Storage Considerations
    • Common Green Options & Ionic Liquids
  • Development and Flight Experience with Green Monopropellants
    • Rocket Grade Hydrogen Peroxide Properties & Experience
    • ADN in Liquid Monopropellants
    • High Performance Green Propulsion Monopropellant and Thrusters
    • HPGP System Design and Flight Experience Microsat, Nanosat and Cubesat Propulsion
    • Microsat, Nanosat and Cubesat Propulsion & Micropropulsion Testing
  • Cryogenic Fluid Management of Propellant Storage Tank
    • History, Overview, and Fundamentals
    • Tank Self-Pressurization
    • Pressurization by Autogenous and Noncondensable Gases
    • Pressure Control by Subcooled Jet Mixing and Spray-bar Droplet Injection
    • Storage Tank and Feed Line Chilldown
    • Thermodynamic, Zonal and CFD Models & Validation
    • 1G and Microgravity Experiments
  • Advances in Turbomachinery in Liquid Propulsion
    • Fundamentals of Turbopumps
    • State-of-the-Art LP Turbomachinery
    • Integrated Software Platform to Advance Turbopump Development
    • Emerging Technologies and Future of LP Turbomachinery
Course notes will be made available a few days prior to the course event. You will receive an email with detailed instructions on how to access your course notes. Since course notes will not be distributed on-site, AIAA and your course instructor highly recommend that you bring your computer with the course notes already downloaded to the course.

Timothee Pourpoint is a Professor in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University. His research focuses on the understanding of storable propellant ignition and combustion through system level testing and advanced diagnostic techniques with an emphasis on novel propellant combinations. As part of his work, Pourpoint has been involved in designing, implementing, and operating several testing facilities at the Maurice Zucrow Laboratories at Purdue University. Pourpoint is an Associate Fellow of AIAA and current Chair of the AIAA Liquid Propulsion Technical Committee.

Paul Gradl is a Senior Propulsion Engineer at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in the Propulsion Division, Engine Components Development and Technology Branch. As a subject matter expert (SME) in liquid nozzle design, he leads manufacturing, design, development and testing of liquid rocket engine combustion chambers, nozzles, and nozzle extensions and supported a variety of development and flight programs over the last 16 years. Gradl serves as principal investigator and leads advanced technology development on several projects for additive manufacturing of combustion devices. He authored and co-authored over 30 conference papers and journal articles; holds three patents in his field; and taught several classes in advanced manufacturing and additive manufacturing for liquid rocket engine components. Gradl holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a MBA from Gannon University, and a Master of Science in Engineering from the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH). Gradl is the recipient of numerous NASA and industry awards including two NASA Exceptional Achievement Medals, NASA Exceptional Service Medal, MSFC Research and Technology, NASA Technology Transfer, Engineering Partnership Award, and NASA Space Flight Honoree to name a few. Gradl is a senior member of AIAA, member of ASME Propulsion Technical Committee for additive manufacturing, and actively involved in JANNAF as a session chair for component technology and development.

Mohammad Kassemi is the director of the NASA GRC’s Advanced Research and Technology Service (ARTS) Contract at CWRU and serves as the Chief Scientist at the National Center for Space Exploration Research (NCSER) at Case and NASA GRC supporting fluids and combustion research aboard the International Space Station (ISS). He is the Principal Investigator of the Zero-Boil-Off Tank (ZBOT) experiments performed aboard the International Space Station investigating fundamental transport and phase change issues related to propellant tank pressurization and pressure control in microgravity. He has also been PI on 8 other experimental and computational Fluids and Materials peer-reviewed NRA awards. He is the recipient of the 2015 NASA Exceptional Public Achievement Award, the 2019 Astronautic Society’s ISS R&D Award, and the 2019 Space Flight Awareness Silver Snoopy award for his contributions on “the effects of long-term microgravity on human health and on performance of cryogenic propellant systems and materials processing in Space”. He is an Associate AIAA Fellow, a member of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Biological and Physical Sciences in Space, and a governing board member of the American Society of Gravitational & Space Research (ASGSR).

Clément Joly is a Lead Engineer at SoftInWay’s and has been with the company since January 2013. He received his Master’s Degree in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering from Polytech ’Orleans in France and attended engineering classes at Wichita State University in Kansas (USA). Joly specializes in steam and gas turbines, cycle design, secondary flow analyses, liquid rocket engines and sCO2 technologies. He teaches courses on fundamentals of turbomachines as well as AxSTREAM design workshops.

Jörg Riccius is the head of the Structures group inside the Rocket Propulsion department of the DLR-institute of Space Propulsion in Lampoldshausen, Germany. His main subject is the development and (TMF panel laser test-based) validation of structural analysis methods for components of high-performance, high-thrust liquid rocket engines such as hot gas walls (combustion chamber, nozzle), turbo pump components (impeller, rotor and turbine blades) and injector heads. In addition to his structural activities, he contributed to a series of European Commission projects like ATLLAS I and II, the Green Propellants project, GRASP, ISP1 and ORPHEE as well as to European Space Agency research work such as NOFS and CLAWS.

Mohammad Naraghi is a Professor Mechanical Engineering at Manhattan College. Prior to joining Manhattan College, he was a Visiting Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering at University of Akron where he received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering. Naraghi in collaboration with NASA Glenn Research Center developed a comprehensive Rocket Thermal Evaluation code (RTE), which is used by NASA research centers and aerospace companies. Naraghi's research is in Thermal/Fluids area and he has published more than eighty articles in ASME, AIAA and international journals and conferences. He is recipient of a number of research grants from NASA and Air Force. Naraghi is a Fellow of ASME, Associate Fellow of AIAA, and a member of AIAA’s Liquid Propulsion Technical Committee.