ULA teams with Blue Origin to find replacement engines for Russian-built RD-180 on Atlas V

by | Sep 17, 2014 | commercial launch services, Technology | 0 comments

The launch provider, United Launch Alliance (ULA) which is jointly owned by Boeing and Lockheed Martin, and the commercial alunch start up,  Blue Origin LLC , which is owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, have announced a joint project to build a new LOx (liquid Oxygen)/LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas – mainly methane) powered engine design called the BE-4.  Under current plans, two of the oxygen-rich staged combustion cycle BE-4 engines will replace the RD-180 engine currently used by Atlas V launch vehicles.   The BE-4 which is based on Blue Origin’s BE-3 design and has a thrust of 550,000 Ibf  (2,446kN). The ULA/Blue Origin agreement allows for a four-year development process with full-scale testing in 2016 and first flight in 2019.

According to Space News, the BE-4 design beat competition for the agreement from Aerojet Rocketdyne, which was designing a 1 million lbf thrust class LOx/kerosene burning engine called the AJ-1, formerly known as the AJ-1-e6.

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to www.seradata.com/spacetrak

Related Articles

South Korea confirms shift of two missions from Russian launchers; Kompsat 6 goes to Arianespace and CAS500-2 goes back to international market

The South Korean vice-minister for Science, Oh Tae-seog, announced on 1 February 2023 that they had selected an Arianespace Vega Read more

NASA goes Nuclear Thermal as it plans to launch engine on DARPA’s DRACO project test mission in 2027

Nuclear Thermal rocket propulsion has been mooted since the 1960s. The idea is to use nuclear power to heat rocket Read more

What’s Next for Space Exploration in 2023 and Beyond

Much changed on Earth and in space during 2022. In July the James Webb Telescope, the largest optical telescope in Read more

Freshly minted Kongsberg NanoAvionics receives CubeSat orders from two French customers

Lithuanian smallsat manufacturer NanoAvionics - now known as Kongsberg NanoAvionics - has been awarded satellite contracts from two French companies. Read more

China launches a technology test satellite, Shiyan 21

At 0617 GMT on 16 December a Long March 11 (CZ-11) rocket placed the Shiyan 21 test satellite into LEO. Read more

SLD lunar lander competition: Blue Origin-led National Team has Boeing replacing Northrop Grumman which joins competitor Dynetics

Having previously lost the original Human Landing System (HLS) contract to SpaceX, Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin has announced a new Read more

Arianespace wins orders for five Vega-C missions to carry Copernicus satellites and a dual Ariane 6 launch for Intelsat

Rounding off November with an impressive haul, European launch provider Arianespace has announced seven orders for its launch vehicles. The Read more

Upcoming American in-orbit servicer Starfish Space contracts with launch arranger to get its demonstrator into orbit

On 9 November Starfish Space an American newspace company contracted with Launcher a compatriot to carry its first demonstration satellite Read more

Categories

Archives