LENA Space has commenced an investigation into the development of a hybrid propellant delivery system under a Grant for Exploratory Ideas from the UK Space Agency.
The three-month Hybrid Propellant Delivery System (PDS) Development project is based around manufacturing a test rig that can support the testing of multiple rocket propellants, in this case, liquid oxygen (LOx) and hydrogen peroxide (HTP). These are the two major oxidisers being investigated for large-scale rocket motors for UK Access to Space intentions; this project will identify and design a rig suitable for both propellants, followed by manufacture and testing of the completed hardware.
LENA has identified that there is a large cost-saving possible by developing a hybrid PDS that can cater for both propellants. Despite their chemical and performance differences, there is a large crossover in terms of system setup and integration. Broadly, the increased specific impulse from a LOx motor is beneficial for a commercially viable satellite launch system, while HTP motors can be launched on short notice and from remote locations due to the relative stability and transportation of the propellant. This second case, for HTP, is described by LENA as the reactive launch capability.
“This project is a great opportunity to directly contribute to the UKSA Access to Space vision, building the operational capability into the supply chain.”
Lee Giles, Chief Technical Officer, LENA Space.