Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program Advances Propulsion Technology With Successful Engine Test Series

Date:
August 8, 2001
Source:
NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center
Summary:
NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program - also known as the Space Launch Initiative - is making advances in propulsion technology with this third and final successful engine hot-fire designed to test electro-mechanical actuators.

NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program - also known as the Space Launch Initiative - is making advances in propulsion technology with this third and final successful engine hot-fire designed to test electro-mechanical actuators.

Information learned from this hot-fire test series about new electro-mechanical actuator technology - which controls the flow of propellants in rocket engines - could provide key advancements for the propulsion systems of future spacecraft.

The test of twin Linear Aerospike XRS-2200 engines, originally built for the X-33 program, was performed Monday, Aug. 6, at NASA's Stennis Space Center, Miss. The engines were fired for the planned 90-seconds and reached a planned maximum power of 85 percent.

The test was originally slated to attain full-power during 100-seconds of testing. Prior to the test, engineers determined the necessary results could be achieved at reduced duration and power. Based on this determination, both planned duration and planned power were reduced.

Two shorter hot-fires of the aerospike engines were performed last month in preparation for the final test firing on Aug. 6.

The Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program, led by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., is a technology development program designed to increase safety and reliability while reducing costs for space travel.

"Because every engine proposed by industry for a second generation vehicle has electro-mechanical actuators, we took advantage of these aerospike engines already on the test stand to explore this relatively new technology now -- saving us valuable time later," said Garry Lyles, Propulsion Projects Office manager of the Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program at the Marshall Center. "This data is critical toward developing the confidence required to support the use of these actuators on future launch vehicles."

Electro-mechanical actuators electronically regulate the amount of propellant (fuel and oxidizer) flow in the engine. The new technology is a potential alternative and improvement to the older pneumatic and hydraulic-fluid systems currently used by the aerospace industry to drive and control critical rocket engine valves.

"This series of engine firings tested the actuator control system in what we call a 'real condition of use' environment," said Dr. Donald Chenevert, electro-mechanical actuator project manager at the Stennis Center. "Firing allows us to see how the integrated system handles the extreme cold of cryogenic propellants, the stress loads of the propellants pushing through the valves, and the dynamic response to commanded flow rate changes. Additionally, we have many other unique conditions such as shock and vibration loads not found in a lab, so we capture more realistic data about the true performance of the actuators."

Engineers are performing engine post-test inspections, and early indications are that all test objectives have been met, Chenevert said. The final data is to be fed directly into the engine systems being considered for a second generation reusable launch vehicle, Lyles said.

"Propulsion is one of the highest and most critical technology areas that we are exploring," said Dennis Smith, manager of the Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program Office at the Marshall Center. "Our goal also is to find, improve or develop technologies such as airframes, avionics, health management systems and ground operations - all to make getting people and payloads into space safer and cheaper."

The Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power Unit of The Boeing Company in Canoga Park, Calif., developed the aerospike engine and supported the engine tests at Stennis Space Center.

Additional information about electro-mechanical actuators can be found on the Internet at: http://www1.msfc.nasa.gov/NEWSROOM/news/releases/2001/01-265.html

Additional information on NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program is available on the Internet at: http://www.slinews.com


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center. "NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program Advances Propulsion Technology With Successful Engine Test Series." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 August 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010808134824.htm>.
NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center. (2001, August 8). NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program Advances Propulsion Technology With Successful Engine Test Series. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010808134824.htm
NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center. "NASA's Second Generation Reusable Launch Vehicle Program Advances Propulsion Technology With Successful Engine Test Series." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/08/010808134824.htm (accessed August 23, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Is It a Plane? No, It's a Hoverbike

Is It a Plane? No, It's a Hoverbike

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 22, 2014) UK-based Malloy Aeronautics is preparing to test a manned quadcopter capable of out-manouvering a helicopter and presenting a new paradigm for aerial vehicles. A 1/3-sized scale model is already gaining popularity with drone enthusiasts around the world, with the full-sized manned model expected to take flight in the near future. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks

Coal Gas Boom in China Holds Climate Risks

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) China's energy revolution could do more harm than good for the environment, despite the country's commitment to reducing pollution and curbing its carbon emissions. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Former TSA X-Ray Scanners Easily Tricked To Miss Weapons

Former TSA X-Ray Scanners Easily Tricked To Miss Weapons

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) Researchers found the scanners could be duped simply by placing a weapon off to the side of the body or encasing it under a plastic shield. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flower Power! Dandelions Make Car Tires?

Flower Power! Dandelions Make Car Tires?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 20, 2014) Forget rolling on rubber, could car drivers soon be traveling on tires made from dandelions? Teams of scientists are racing to breed a type of the yellow flower whose taproot has a milky fluid with tire-grade rubber particles in it. As Joanna Partridge reports, global tire makers are investing millions in research into a new tire source. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins