Phase Four LLC, a startup based in El Segundo, California, announced plans March 7 to conduct the first on-orbit demonstration of its plasma propulsion technology in late 2017.
If stringent demands are posed for the foundation of an environmentally sustainable space era, enabling a comprehensive tool set of sustainable space solutions appears as an important choice. However, sustainability is a broad term within this context. Achievement of environmental sustainability
Facing congressional pressure to begin work on an American replacement for the Russian-built main rocket engine used today to launch most U.S. national security payloads, the U.S. Air Force quietly unveiled the initial steps in a procurement strategy that has been complicated by a key industry player’s own plans.
The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) has answered with a qualified “yes” the question of whether a British company’s revolutionary air-breathing rocket engine, designed for a horizontal-takeoff vehicle climbing to orbit with a single stage, holds promise.
NASA’s proposed, and oft-reviled, Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) may be worth doing if it helps pave the way for an electric-powered interstellar rocket engine, Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas) said.
The principal beneficiaries of the government program have been France’s two main satellite prime contractors, Airbus Defence and Space, and Thales Alenia Space.
On the same day two Russian-made RD-180 rocket engines arrived in Alabama from Moscow, the U.S. Air Force issued a request for information on the possibility of weaning itself from those very engines.
Aerojet Rocketdyne will demonstrate the use of additive manufacturing techniques to produce selected, full-scale rocket engine components.
The White House took issue with the 2015 defense spending bill drafted by a House panel, which sets aside $220 million for the engine.
The subcommittee’s draft forms the backbone of the defense spending bill that is expected to be marked up by the full House Appropriations Committee June 10.
In the wake of a blue-ribbon panel’s report urging the U.S. government to develop a domestic replacement for the Russian-built RD-180 rocket engine, the Senate Armed Services Committee drafted a 2015 defense authorization bill that provides $100 million for that purpose.