Thursday, December 1, 2011

J-2X combustion stability tested

J-2X combustion stablity test. NASA photo
STENNIS SPACE CENTER, Miss. - NASA conducted a stability test firing of the J-2X rocket engine Thursday on the A-2 test stand at Stennis Space Center in South Mississippi. The upper-stage engine is being developed to carry humans farther into space than ever before. The 80-second test firing focused on characterizing the new engine's combustion stability. During the test, a controlled explosion was initiated inside the engine's combustion chamber to introduce an energetic pulse of vibrations not expected during nominal operations. Data from this and future combustion stability tests will help engineers understand more about the engine's performance and robustness during operation. The engine is being developed by Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne and will provide upper-stage power for NASA's new Space Launch System. The SLS will carry the Orion spacecraft, its crew, cargo, equipment and science experiments to space. (Source: NASA, 12/01/11)