Video: First Hot Fire Testing of 75kN HyImpulse Hybrid Rocket Motor

Video Caption: At midday of Tuesday 15 September, the first firing of the HyImpulse 75kN hybrid rocket motor was a full success! It was performed at the world class DLR Lampoldshausen testing facility.

This is the biggest hybrid rocket motor ever built and tested in Europe. This marks an important milestone in accomplishing our plan for a suborbital flight in early 2021 and the first flight of the three stage HyImpulse launcher SL1 by the end of 2022.

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Gilmour Space Achieves 45-second Milestone in Latest Hybrid Rocket Engine Test Fire

A successful 45-second engine burn. (Credit: Gilmour Space Technologies)

QUEENSLAND, 25 Jun 2020 (Gilmour Space Technologies PR) — Australia’s leading rocket company has reached another milestone in its mission to launch small satellites to space by 2022.

Rocket engineers at Gilmour Space Technologies in Queensland, Australia, have completed the first in a series of major technology demonstrations this year: a successful 45-second ‘hot fire’ of their upper-stage hybrid rocket engine. 

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Australian Defence Ministry Signs Agreement with Gilmour Space Technologies

CANBERRA, Australia (Defence Ministry PR) — Defence and Gold Coast company Gilmour Space Technologies have joined forces to work together on space technologies under a new strategic agreement.

The leading hybrid rocket launch provider is developing lower-cost, reliable and dedicated rockets to launch small satellites into low earth orbits.

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Rocket Crafters Concludes Comet Engine Testing

Comet engine hot fire (Credit: Rocket Crafters)

COCOA, Fla., May 12, 2020 (Rocket Crafters PR) — Rocket Crafters, the first space launch company to use additive manufacturing to 3D print rocket fuel, announces the conclusion of testing for the Comet engine, a large-scale proof of concept test model of its STAR-3DTM hybrid rocket engine.

The tests were designed to show that the patent-pending hybrid rocket engines could scale from the laboratory to a size more commercially relevant. With 49 successful laboratory tests under their belt ranging from 250 to 500 pounds of thrust, Rocket Crafters initiated testing of the Comet 5000-pound thrust engine in February of this year.

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Virgin Galactic Continues Engine Testing in Mojave

mojave_tower_sunset_smI received a reliable report of another SpaceShipTwo engine test in Mojave on Thursday. It took place at the so-called Whittinghill test stand.

Judging from the dark plume of smoke, my source believes is it was a rubber/nitrous oxide that Virgin Galactic’s subsidiary, The Spaceship Company, is reportedly working on.

The source reports the engine ran pretty roughly toward the end, as tends to happen with rubber hybrid motors.

As you might recall, the rubber hybrid appears to be an alternative to the alternative nylon/nitrous oxide engine that Virgin Galactic switched to when Sierra Nevada’s rubber/nitrous oxide engine failed to perform as needed.

A second source says work on the rubber engine is continuing because Virgin Galactic has a great deal of money tied up in tooling for producing that type of engine. It would be expensive to switch over for another type of hybrid.

There are still plans to use the nylon/nitrous oxide engine for SpaceShipTwo flight tests, which are believed to restart soon. On Oct. 4, Virgin Galactic Vice President Mike Moses said powered flight were  “going to start imminently, literally very imminently.” That was three weeks ago.











SNC Abandons Own Hybrid Motors on Dream Chaser

Dream Chaser Main Propulsion System Test. (Credit: Sierra Nevada Corporation)
Dream Chaser Main Propulsion System Test. (Credit: Sierra Nevada Corporation)

Sierra Nevada Corporation won’t be using its own hybrid rockets for its Dream Chaser space shuttle, making it the second company in recent months after Virgin Galactic to dump the nitrous oxide-rubber motors.

Kathy Lueders, program manager for NASA’s Commercial Crew Program (CCP), revealed the change in an update during the third quarterly meeting of the Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP) on July 24.

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SpaceDev wins contract for NASA Hybrid Rocket Motors

SpaceDev Press Release

POWAY, CA – March 3, 2008 – SpaceDev, Inc. (OTCBB: SPDV) announced today that it has been awarded a contract by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center for the research and development of its next generation proprietary annular hybrid rocket motors. The contract work will be performed over a six-month period, during which SpaceDev is expected to conduct development testing with the objective of validating performance parameters. This technology could provide significant improvements to hybrid rockets in terms of both performance and packaging efficiency that could significantly broaden their overall applicability and value.

“We’ve been continuing our development of advanced rocket motors for spacecraft and this is a strong next step in that process. Our cooperation with NASA and specifically with the Marshall Space Flight Center is of major importance to us. Their experience and knowledge will provide considerable added value to the important work being conducted by our propulsion team,” said Mark N. Sirangelo, SpaceDev’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “This technology could allow hybrid rocket motors to establish a presence in areas they have not been historically considered in commercial, civil space and military applications.”