Propellant

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Propellant'

Propellant Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    propellant adj : tending to or capable of propelling; "propellant fuel for submarines"; "the faster a jet plane goes the greater its propulsive efficiency"; "universities...the seats of propulsive thought" [syn: propellent, propelling, propulsive] n : something that propels [syn: propellent]
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Propellant'


A propellant is a material that is used to move ("propel") an object. The material is usually expelled by gas pressure through a nozzle. The pressure may be from a compressed gas, or a gas produced by a chemical reaction. The exhaust material may be a gas, liquid, plasma, or, before the chemical reaction, a solid, liquid or gelled.

Common chemical propellants consist of a fuel; like gasoline, jet fuel, rocket fuel, and an oxidizer.

In aerosol spray cans, the propellant is simply a pressurized gas in equilibrium with its liquid (at its saturated vapour pressure). As some gas escapes to expel the payload, more liquid evaporates, maintaining an even pressure. (See aerosol spray propellant for more information.)

Technically, the word propellant is the general name for chemicals used to create thrust. For vehicles, the term propellant refers only to chemicals that are stored within the vehicle prior to use, and excludes atmospheric gas or other material that may be collected in operation.

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