NASA successfully tested a rocket engine printed on a 3D printer

NASA has successfully tested a rotating detonation rocket engine (RDRE) that was printed on a 3D printer. This is stated in the agency’s report.

The test was conducted by engineers at the Marshall Space Flight Center, located in Alabama. During the launch, the engine operated for 251 seconds and generated more than 2.6 tons of thrust.

The first RDRE test took place last summer. During the launch, which lasted about one minute, it was possible to generate a thrust of more than 1.8 tons.

RDRE differs from a conventional engine. During its operation, explosive combustion of fuel occurs, the products of which move at high speeds. This approach allows you to create more energy with less fuel consumption. However, the engine elements are subjected to severe loads.

The technology used in the RDRE is considered promising for use in landing modules and in long-distance missions, including to Mars.

“The RDRE enables a huge leap in design efficiency,” explained at the Space Flight Center. “It demonstrates we are closer to making lightweight propulsion systems that will allow us to send more mass and payload further into deep space, a critical component to NASA’s Moon to Mars vision.”

In the future, experts will work to determine how to scale the technology to increase productivity.