Articles about scramjet

SR72 old and new

SR-71 Blackbird follow-up: A new TERRIFYING Mach 6 spy-drone bomber

Pics The famous SR-71 Blackbird was put out to pasture over a decade ago – but the legendary Skunk Works aviation wizards that built it have been showing off a replacement that can travel twice as fast and it could be in the skies within a decade. The SR-72 will be unmanned, saving a lot of the weight needed to keep the two fleshy …
Iain Thomson, 1 Nov 2013
Scramspace pre-launch

Mach 8 Scramjet flies but sends no data

The University of Queensland's ScramSpace hypersonic flight experiment in Norway's Andøya Rocket Range has failed to fire in its one-chance-only test flight. In a terse statement, the university said the launch lifted off successfully, with the first two stages of the launcher landing safely in the water. “However it appears …

DARPA: You didn't think we could make a Mach 6 spaceplane, so let us have this MACH TEN job

In this post-Space Shuttle world, it often seems that the dream of a spacecraft which could reach orbit without expensively throwing most of itself away is receding rather than drawing closer. Last time DARPA went for a spaceplane - the X-30 SSTO concept of 1984 Sure, there's the tiny X-37B "space warplane", carrying out …
Lewis Page, 18 Sep 2013
An X-51A scramjet attached to the wing of a B-52 bomber ready for launch. Credit: USAF

Scramjet X-51 finally goes to HYPER SPEED above Pacific

The US military may have finally achieved its goal of powering a sustained hypersonic flight on relatively ordinary jet fuel, according to a report. The first X-51A and its booster rocket mounted ready for release from B-52 mothership. Credit: USAF Fourth time lucky, maybe? Aviation Week says that the fourth and final X- …
Lewis Page, 3 May 2013
Artists impression of the X-33. Pic: NASA

Space elevators, vacuum chutes: What next for big rocket tech?

Pic special We recently suggested that even the most advanced rocket currently slipping the surly bonds of Earth is nothing more than glorified V2, over 70 years since Hitler's Vergeltungswaffe 2 first lifted off the pad at Peenemünde. Today, we'll have a look at some technologies that may one day allow us to escape V2 designer Wernher …
Lester Haines, 12 Apr 2013

Hypersonic Waverider scramjet in epic wipeout

The US Air Force’s ongoing attempt to develop a hypersonic scramjet has taken another hit, with its X-51A tester breaking up less than a minute into its 15 August test flight. According to the Air Force, the test flight, planned to last five minutes, ended 31 seconds after it started. A rocket booster had been fired to …
The Register breaking news

Fastest-ever hydrocarb scramjet hits Mach 8, doesn't explode

The successful test launch of the hydrocarbon-fuelled scramjet HIFire 2 by the US brings mankind a step closer to practical travel at over five times the speed of sound. Reliable hypersonic transportation could revolutionise trips to space and across the globe, but sustained flight at such speed is difficult: several test …
Anna Leach, 15 May 2012
The Register breaking news

X-51A hydrocarb scramjet flames out in second test

The quest for practical hypersonic aircraft (or missiles, if that's what you like) suffered another setback on Monday when the second X-51A hydrocarbon-burning scramjet test vehicle had its engine flame go out above the Pacific and was unable to restart. An X-51A scramjet attached to the wing of a B-52 bomber ready for launch …
Lewis Page, 16 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

X-51 hypersonic scramjet test bird ready for second flight

The X-51A hypersonic scramjet project is back on track, according to its chiefs, with problems that occurred on the inaugural test flight now ironed out and a second flight pencilled in for 22 March. The first X-51A and its booster rocket mounted ready for release from B-52 mothership. Credit: USAF All right, very nice, but …
Lewis Page, 18 Mar 2011
The Register breaking news

US air force has new scramjet hypersonic plane plans

Who remembers the Blackswift – the planned hypersonic successor to the legendary SR-71 Blackbird spy plane of Cold War fame? The Blackswift was intended to take off and land from a runway like a normal plane and achieve speeds of Mach 6 on scramjet propulsion (comfortably eclipsing its illustrious turbo/ramjet predecessor's Mach …
Lewis Page, 13 Jan 2011
The Register breaking news

UK Skylon spaceplane set for engine test in '3-4 years'

Farnborough Reaction Engines, the British firm aiming to build an enhanced "Skylon" space shuttle which would take off from a runway without external tank or boosters, says it expects to test its revolutionary "SABRE" rocket/jet engine within "three to four years". Here's the basic Skylon movie, for those few Reg readers who may not have …
Lewis Page, 22 Jul 2010
The Register breaking news

X-51 hypersonic scramjet test: Flameout at Mach 5?

US government aerospace agencies have achieved the world's first hypersonic scramjet flight using hydrocarbon fuel. The test did not go perfectly, but further flights will follow; organisers said they were "ecstatic" with progress thus far. Concept graphic of the Waverider in flight, during rocket boost. Credit: AFNS …
Lewis Page, 27 May 2010
The Register breaking news

X-51 ordinary-fuel scramjet to fly on Tuesday

The X-51A "Waverider" scramjet will fly at last next Tuesday, it has been announced. It had been expected that the radical engine - capable of Mach 6 velocities while running on fairly ordinary jet fuel - would fly last December, but budgetary and scheduling difficulties have delayed the project. The X-51A is being run by the …
Lewis Page, 21 May 2010
The Register breaking news

Radical hypersonic glider vanishes above Pacific

Some details are beginning to emerge regarding the failure of an advanced US military hypersonic glider test above the Pacific last week. However, a complete picture of what happened to the HTV-2 test platform may never appear, as communications with it were lost early in the flight. DARPA concept of the HTV-2 manoeuvring in …
Lewis Page, 27 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

X-51 ordinary-fuel scramjet to fly in December

Flight tests of a powerful US military scramjet prototype able to exceed Mach 4 while burning ordinary jet fuel have been scheduled for December, according to reports. Aviation Week reports today that the X-51 "WaveRider" scramjet will now fly in December. The X-51 will be released from a B-52 bomber mothership operated by …
Lewis Page, 5 Aug 2009
The Register breaking news

New hydrocarb X-51 scramjet ready for flight

US jet-engines'n'rockets colossus Pratt & Whitney says it has successfully completed ground testing of its new hypersonic scramjet engine prototype, which can run on ordinary hydrocarbon fuel at Mach 6. The company believes that the radical hyperjet is now ready to fly on the X-51 "WaveRider" test flights planned to begin next …
Lewis Page, 26 Sep 2008

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