Ramjet fuel passes ground engine test

Aug. 12, 2010 at 9:41 AM
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SACRAMENTO, Aug. 12 (UPI) -- An advanced solid ramjet fuel being developed to give long-range, high-speed capability to U.S. missiles has successfully passed engine ground testing.

Aerojet, a GenCorp company, said testing was conducted at its Airbreathing Test Facility in Orange County, Va. It involved a full-scale engine in conditions simulating high-altitude, high-speed flight.

"Our air-breathing propulsion business represents cutting-edge technology aimed at future military requirements," said Aerojet Vice President Dick Bregard. "Aerojet is proud to demonstrate our commitment to advancing our country's military capability through this innovative ramjet fuel research."

The solid ramjet fuel is for the U.S. military and could be used in the future U.S. Air Force/Navy Joint Dual Role Air Dominance Missile.

Ramjet engines have historically used liquid fuel, which mixes with atmospheric air to provide thrust at high speed, the company said, but the military has interest in storable solid fuel for tactical missiles.

Aerojet developed a solid-fueled ramjet for the U.S. Navy in 2000 and since then has been developing a family of advanced formulations called AerGen, which burns efficiently, delivers more energy and reduces visible exhaust.

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