Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering (MSE)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Committee Chair

Robert Frederick

Committee Member

Judith Schneider


Liquid propellant rockets--Design and construction, Additive manufacturing


Liquid rocket engines (LRE) are among the most expensive components of any launch vehicle. While additive manufacturing (AM) shows promise in alleviating some of the costs of LREs, the use of AM could introduce new failure modes which would increase time spent in Test-Fail-Fix. This thesis demonstrates a methodology for understanding the trade-offs of using additive manufacturing for LREs to inform decision making. A decision matrix was used to choose the ideal AM process, and a quantitative model was applied to capture one of the trade-offs of using AM, that being increased surface roughness on LRE performance. A candidate component was selected for this methodology, and an ideal AM process was chosen. The results showed there was minimal loss in performance due to increased surface roughness. Demonstrating this methodology showed how a model-based approach to systems engineering can help engineers make informed decisions before going to the test stand.



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