Re: Some "Air-Breathing-Rocket" PR
It sounds like Hyper-X, one of the last vestiges of the old National
Aerospace Plane program.
Yes, the technology is significant, but what will NASA do with it? Will
they build a bigger version? Not if the X-33 folks have anything to say
NASA is finally putting serious funding into advanced space vehicle
technology, but who knows if and when it will ever get beyond the
experimental phase. Our private rocket friends will be fully operational
by the time NASA does anything with the technology.
Sorry about the cynicism. I'm just tired of waiting for the future to happen.
At 11:09 PM -0600 11/6/98, Dejan Bajic wrote:
>Does any of this mean anything?
>FYI, or not.
>Media Relations Office
>Marshall Space Flight Center
>Huntsville, AL 35812
>For Release: Nov. 6, 1998
>Air-breathing Rocket Engine Tests Successfully Completed
>NASA has successfully completed two years of testing radical, new rocket
>engines that could change the future of space travel. NASA and its industry
>partners have ground tested rocket engines that "breathe" oxygen from the
>"Air-breathing rocket engine technologies have the potential of opening the
>space frontier to ordinary folks," said Uwe Hueter of NASA's Marshall Space
>Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. "We've proven the technologies on the
>ground with extensive testing of complex and technically challenging system
>components. Now, I believe we're ready to demonstrate the technologies in
>Air-breathing rocket engines could make future space travel like today's
>travel, said Hueter, manager of NASA's Advanced Reusable Technologies
>The spacecraft would be completely reusable, take off and land at airport
>runways, and be ready to fly again within days.
>An air-breathing rocket engine inhales oxygen from the air for about half
>flight, so it doesn't have to store the gas onboard. So at take-off, an
>breathing rocket weighs much less than a conventional rocket, which carries
>all of its fuel and oxygen onboard. Getting off the ground is the most
>expensive part of any mission to low-Earth orbit, and reducing a vehicle's
>weight decreases cost significantly.
>An air-breathing engine (called a rocket-based, combined cycle engine) gets
>its initial take-off power from specially designed rockets, called air-
>augmented rockets, that boost performance about 15 percent over
>rockets. When the vehicle's velocity reaches twice the speed of sound, the
>rockets are turned off and the engine relies totally on oxygen in the
>atmosphere to burn the hydrogen fuel. Once the vehicle's speed increases to
>about 10 times the speed of sound, the engine converts to a conventional
>rocket-powered system to propel the vehicle into orbit.
>This unconventional approach to getting to space is one of the technologies
>NASA's Advanced Space Transportation Program at the Marshall Center is
>developing to make space transportation affordable for everyone from
>travelers to tourists. NASA's goal is to reduce launch costs from today's
>price tag of $10,000 per pound to only hundreds of dollars per pound.
>GASL, a small aerospace company in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., has conducted most of
>the air-breathing rocket engine testing at its facilities on Long Island.
>GASL's unique facility is capable of testing across a wide range of speeds
>and modes the rocket engine must achieve in flight.
>NASA's industry partners in developing air-breathing rocket technologies
>Aerojet Corp. of Sacramento, Calif.; Rocketdyne of Canoga Park, Calif.;
>Astrox Corp. of Rockville, Md.; Pennsylvania State University of University
>Park; and the University of Alabama in Huntsville.
> - end -
>Note to Editors: Interviews, photos and video supporting this release are
>available to media representatives by contacting June Malone, Media
>Office, Marshall Space Flight Center, (256) 544-0034. For an electronic
>version of this release, photos, QuickTime movie or more information, visit
>Marshall's new Virtual NewsRoom: http://www.msfc.nasa.gov/news
>For more information on the Advanced Space Transportation Program, visit
>Web site: http://stp.msfc.nasa.gov
>"Beware of the man of one book."
>"Every vision is a joke until the first man accomplishes it. Once
>realized, it becomes commanplace."
>"Space is a place not a program."
>"Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd."
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S a m C o n i g l i o, Jack of All Trades
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Some "Air-Breathing-Rocket" PR
From: "Dejan Bajic" <adastra@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>