Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Successful qualification firing test for Zefiro 23

02.04.2008
On 27 March 2008, the second stage motor for Vega - Europe's new small launcher - successfully completed a static firing test at the Salto Di Quirra Inter-force Test Range in Sardinia, Italy.
Ignition of the qualification model of the Zefiro 23 solid-propellant rocket motor occurred at 13:15 CET. In just 14 seconds, the thrust reached 930 kN, equivalent to nearly 95 tonnes of force.

This was the second and final firing test for the Zefiro 23, in which over 24 tonnes of propellant was consumed with a flame temperature of over 3000 K. The burn lasted approximately 75 seconds and initial results show the test to be a success.

Performance as predicted

The combustion chamber pressure and motor thrust were well within the test prediction. Large amplitude movements of the thrust vector control system were executed - simulating worst-case manoeuvres - and the performance was very satisfactory. Additionally, modifications implemented in the nozzle design following the anomaly experienced during the previous Zefiro 9 test were proven to be effective.

“The success of this test demonstrates the soundness of the design and rewards the enormous efforts of the team that has worked on the project,” stated Francesco Betti, Head of the Design Department at Avio's Space Division.

The motor will now be transported back to Avio's facility at Colleferro (Italy) for a thorough inspection of all its components and the data obtained from the 400 sensors deployed during the test will be analysed in more detail.

“The project team will rendezvous at Salto Di Quirra in June for the Zefiro 9 firing test,” announced Paolo Bellomi, Technical Director of ELV, the Vega launcher prime contractor.

Two motors now qualified

In the past 27 months, four Vega test firings have taken place at Salto Di Quirra, each one a milestone in the development of the Vega launcher. The Zefiro 23 is the second Vega solid rocket motor to achieve qualification, following the P80 first stage motor, which completed qualification testing in December 2007.

“The teams of Avio, ELV, SABCA APP and of the Integrated Programme Team of ESA, CNES and ASI did a great job. This success paves the way for the Vega maiden flight,” said Stefano Bianchi, Head of the Vega Programme at ESA.


About Vega

Vega is a single body launcher composed of three solid-propellant stages and a liquid-propellant upper module. It is approximately 30 metres high, and weighs a total of 137 tonnes at lift off. Vega's reference launch capacity is to carry a 1500 kg payload into a 700 km-altitude polar orbit, but the launcher is also designed to serve a wide range of scientific and Earth observation missions.

Stefano Bianchi | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.esa.int

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under real ambient pressure conditions
28.06.2017 | National Institutes of Natural Sciences

nachricht New photoacoustic technique detects gases at parts-per-quadrillion level
28.06.2017 | Brown University

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersensitive through quantum entanglement

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under real ambient pressure conditions

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Mice provide insight into genetics of autism spectrum disorders

28.06.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>