Russians Test Fire Reusable LOX-LNG Engine

Test of a reusable LOX-LNG engine. (Credit: Roscosmos)

The Russians conducted a hot firing last week on a new reusable rocket engine that is powered by liquid oxygen (LOX) and liquefied natural gas (LNG). The test took place on Sept. 28 in Peresvet (Moscow region).

The rocket engine was designed and manufactured by KB Khimmash imeni A.M. Isayeva, which is a branch of GKNPTs Khrunichev. A Roscosmos press release describes the test as being carried out on a “double integration engine.”

I ran the press release through Google Translate, whose interpretation is a bit rough. Maybe some of you who are more technical inclined can explain this a bit better:

Duration of the first start was 162 seconds. On the second turn, it reached a record length of the engine of such dimension with a single turn – 2,007 seconds. Total flight time for the engine during the four inclusions was 3,389 seconds.

The test confirmed the possibility of multiple (double) start and stop of the engine demonstrator at the liquefied natural gas, long the engine is performed on a closed circuit with afterburning generating gas recovery, to fuel a pair of LOX LNG stability prolonged (more than 2,000 seconds) of the engine demonstrator in native mode with various combinations of thrust and fuel mixture ratio, the correct technical solutions adopted for the multiple launch, management, regulation, taking into account the characteristics of liquefied natural gas, the ability to stand for the long-term tests, etc.

The tests have provided experimental data to refine the methodology for calculating the cooling of the combustion chamber when using LNG as a cooling agent. Also improved the technology of transportation, refueling and temperature control of large masses of liquefied natural gas, and tested technological solutions and practicable procedures for refueling flight products.

The original story is here.