Scientists from Purdue University have prepared a new solid propellant with explosive results. The fuel, a combination of nanoaluminum and ice, is a new kind of environmentally friendly solid rocket fuel that could someday be used in missions to outer space. With the motive to minimize fuel consumption onboard, the fuel has been successfully field-tested in a nine-foot rocket which scaled an amazing height of 1300 feet at 200mph using seven inches of nanoaluminum and ice.


The desired temperatures for flight can be reached with aluminum and water, but the researchers believe the kinetics would be so slow and it would be hard to ignite, thus they have broken aluminum into very tiny nanoscopic pieces, which increases the kinetics, and it actually works. Because of its small size, i.e. smaller than 80 nanometers, the aluminum ice, or ALICE for short, can be compressed into a solid bar, thus making it safe and easy to transport.

Via Gizmowatch