The UK Minister of State for Universities and Science, the Rt Hon David Willetts MP gave his support to UK technology firm Reaction Engines Limited as it announced the success of the first and second stages of its testing of the revolutionary precooler section of a new type of engine called SABRE.
David Willetts MP has pre-cooler technology explained to him by Alan Bond andTim Hayter. Courtesy: Flightglobal/David Todd
Reaction Engines claims that its design, effectively a cross between a jet engine and rocket engine with an air-cooling system attached, will allow aircraft to fly anywhere on Earth in four hours, or directly into orbit as part of the Skylon space plane design Testing of the key pre-cooler technology which cools incoming airstream from over 1000 degrees C to minus 150 degrees C in less than 1/100 of a second, has completed the first two out of a series of three sets of planned tests.
Pre-cooler test section. Courtesy: Flightglobal/David Todd
The initial tests have, according to Reaction Engines, shown that it has freedom from vibrational, structural integrity and that it has aerodynamic stability. While sub-zero temperatures have been ...