Watch Gilmour Space Launch This 3D Printed Liquid Rocket Engine
Gilmour Space Technologies has unveiled a new 3D-printed liquid rocket engine to propel the third stage of its Eris rocket into orbit.
3D printed, liquid, rocket AND space. All of these things sound very cool, but what exactly do they mean? Let’s start with Eris.
Eris is a three-stage rocket developed by Australian company Gilmour Space to launch small satellites into low Earth orbit. Its maiden launch is set to take place at the end of this year from Bowen’s orbital spaceport in northern Queensland, pending regulatory and other approvals, of course.
As for the 3D printed liquid rocket? Watch this video first:
The video is 3.35 minutes of fun. It shows a successful test firing of 190 seconds of the mission duty cycle (or mission duration) of its new regeneratively cooled liquid rocket engine.
“The first and second stages of Eris will be powered by Sirius, our large hybrid rocket engine which is undergoing qualification testing,” explained Gilmour Space CEO Adam Gilmour.
“The third stage of Eris will be powered by this new 3D-printed liquid rocket engine, called Phoenix, which we developed to give us the extra performance needed to deliver a lot more payload into orbit.”
According to Gilmour Space, liquid rocket engines are used by most rocket companies around the world, including SpaceX, and are notoriously complex and expensive to develop.
“With this key test, we are proud to say that Gilmour Space demonstrated sovereign capability in not one but two rocket systems,” Gilmour added.
“The team has gone to exceptional lengths to design, build and test this new engine in just over a year while evolving our main hybrid rocket engine, building the rest of the vehicle and pushing for the development of a new orbital launch site in Australia. ”
Why is this a big deal? Well, according to Gilmour Space, this short test was a milestone. Truly, the test was a demonstration of Australia’s sovereign launch capability. The company is developing Australian-made rockets that it hopes will be capable of launching satellites and payloads of 300 to 4,000 kilograms into low Earth and other orbits.
Gilmour Space aims to provide an affordable and reliable option for accessing space, and the CEO believes that this unique engine combination the company unveiled today will allow them to achieve that goal. Space is also cool, and rocket videos are even cooler.
Speaking of rocket videos, in January Gilmour Space shared another clip, after successfully firing a 110 kilonewton test of what they say is the most powerful rocket engine ever developed here.