The effects of various burning rate catalysts on thermal decomposition of cured glycidyl azide polymer (GAP)-ammonium perchlorate
(AP) propellants have been studied by means of thermal analysis and a modified vacuum stability test (MVST). Four types of
iron-containing catalysts examined in this paper are catocene, ferrocenecarboxaldehyde (FCA), ferrocene, and ferric oxide.
Results of differential thermal analysis (DTA) and thermogravimetric analysis (TG) revealed that the catalysts play an important
role in the decomposition of both AP and GAP. The peak decomposition temperature (Tm) of DTA curves and onset decomposition temperature (To) of TG patterns considerably shifted to a lower temperature as the concentration of catalysts increased in the propellants.
The endothermic temperature of AP, however, is unaffected by the presence of burning rate catalysts in all cases. The activation
energy of decomposition of the propellants in range of 80 to 120°C is determined, based on the MVST results.