Aerojet announced on November 28th that it had completed the preliminary design review of a turbopump assembly. The assembly is to be used in a ground demonstrator of a new liquid rocket engine, as part of Aerojet’s Next Generation Engine (NGE) program.
The review was conducted with Aerojet’s partner, Florida Turbine Technologies (FTT), in front of a panel of third-party turbomachinery experts. Aerojet’s Vice President of Space and Launch Systems, Julie Van Kleek, said: “We continue to make steady progress on a modern, all-U.S. LOX/hydrogen upper stage engine which will significantly reduce U.S. launch vehicle propulsion costs and improve performance.”
The NGE program is an initiative by Aerojet to bolster US competitiveness in launcher engine technology by producing a modern replacement for existing upper-stage engines, which currently are either based on old technology or are produced outside the United States. Having completed the preliminary design review, FTT can now progress with the detailed design and development of the turbopump, which will be used on a ground demonstration model of the NGE.
In anticipation of an open competition for a next-generation LOX/Hydrogen engine, Aerojet has participated in the development of a number of relevant design and manufacturing technologies, including a hydrogen pump and the Integrated Powerhead Demonstrator for the Air Force Research Laboratory, and the Liquid Engine Test Bed for NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center.
Aerojet, a GenCorp-owned company, provides engineering and design services to the missile and launch vehicle industries. Florida Turbine Technologies, one of Aerojet’s partner companies, specializes in the development and manufacturing of turbomachinery for aircraft engines, space propulsion systems, and industrial gas turbines.