London to Sydney within four hours? ..maybe!

2012-11-29 115300

British engineers have successfully tested a key component of an engine that could power a spaceplane from London to Sydney in under four hours.

The engineers have hailed it as the biggest breakthrough in aerospace propulsion “since the invention of the jet engine”. Oxfordshire-based Reaction Engines hope to build a rocket plane called Lapcat that would take off from an ordinary runway, reach speeds of around 19,000mph in the upper atmosphere and then land like a normal jet aircraft. While still in the atmosphere, the plane’s Sabre engine would combine on-board hydrogen fuel with oxygen that it “breathes” from the air. But the air needs to be super-cooled for the engine to work.

The company has now demonstrated a lightweight heat exchanger that pre-cools incoming air from 1000 degrees Celsius to minus 150 degrees in 1/100th of a second – six times faster than the blink of an eye – without blocking pipes with a layer of frost. Alan Bond, who founded the company and led the research, said: “The team has been trying to solve this problem for over 30 years and we’ve finally done it.

“The Sabre engine has the potential to revolutionise our lives in the 21st century in the way the jet engine did in the 20th Century.”

The tests were validated by the European Space Agency.

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Charles M0OXO

I was born in the 1960’s and have lived all my life in the Coal Mining Town of Barnsley in South Yorkshire, Northern England. My parents were all from this area of Yorkshire and my father worked in the main Industry of the local Collieries as a face worker. I have been married to my wife Debbie for 35+ years and we have two children and two grandchildren.

I have been licensed for around 20 years after my interest was re-kindled when I retired from my role as a Police Officer within South Yorkshire Police Force. The latter few years were spent as Radio Operator in the Force Operations Control Room at Sheffield, before my career ended.

IOTA chasing is (and always has been) my real passion, as climbing the ladder to reach Honour Roll status was always my main aim. The 1000 Islands Trophy is still out of reach but I am heading in the right direction. I am currently a Board Member of IOTA Ltd and IREF.

In my free time I am a keen Photographer of Wildlife, Aviation, (anything really) but the QSL Manager role is my main passion within Ham Radio.