Various chemical reactions and physical processes (such as stabilizer consumption, migration and evaporation of nitroglycerine, decomposition of nitroglycerine and nitrocellulose, etc.) take place in double based rocket propellants grains over the time, even under ambient storage conditions. The overall effect of these reactions and processes are changes of physical, chemical, thermal, ballistic and mechanical properties of rocket propellants with storage time, i.e. the reduction of the propellants performances and safe service life. The aim of this work was to evaluate the mechanical changes of rocket propellants – sustainers, built in in-service antitank guided missiles systems, induced by natural ageing at ambient conditions during up to 35 years of storage. The mechanical and viscoelastic properties were tested using a dynamic mechanical analyser, an uniaxial tensile and compression tester, and a notch toughness tester. The results have shown that the changes of the studied mechanical and viscoelastic properties are evident, although the results of the tests are rather scattered (as a consequence of measuring uncertainty, different ageing histories of propellants, etc.) or changes of some properties are not too pronounced. For example, after 15 years of storage at ambient conditions the glass transition temperature increases for about 5 C, the tan δ in the glass transition region decreases for about 5%, the storage and loss modulus at 25 °C increase for about 15%, Young modulus at 23 C increases up to 30%, the notch toughness at -30 C decreases up to 15%, etc. Along with these tests, the stabilizer content determination and proving ground ballistic tests were also done.
 Bohn M.A, Kinetic Modelling of the Ageing of Gun and Rocket Propellants for the Improved and Time-Extended Prediction of Their Service Lifetime, Proc. 4th Life Cycles of Energetic Materials Conference, Fullerton, USA, 1998, pp. 1-38.
 Vogelsanger B., Chemical Stability, Compatibility and Shelf Life of Explosives, Chimia, 2004, 58, 401-408.
 Bohn M.A., Volk F., Ageing Behaviour of Propellants Investigated by Heat Generation, Stabiliser Consumption, and Molar Mass Degradation, Propellants, Explos., Pyrotech., 1992, 17, 171-178.
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