August 28, 2016
Chennai: ISRO today successfully completed the first experimental mission of its Scramjet engine, from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. The 300-second long flight has demonstrated critical technologies, like the ignition of air breathing engines and holding the flame at supersonic speeds, the engine’s air intake mechanism and fuel injection systems.
The Scramjet engine, designed by ISRO, uses hydrogen as fuel, and the atmospheric oxygen as oxidiser. ISRO’s solid rocket booster, the Advanced Technology Vehicle (ATV), carrying the 3277 kilos Scramjet engine, lifted off at 6.00 AM today after a 12-hour long countdown. The four main events – burning out of the booster rocket stage, ignition of the second stage solid rocket, functioning of the Scramjet engine for 5 seconds, and finally, the burn out of the second stage – took place as scheduled.
The vehicle finally landed in the Bay of Bengal after completing its 300-second-long flight.
The success makes India the fourth country in the world to demonstrate the flight testing of Scramjet Engine. It is an important achievement for ISRO, in its quest to develop air-breathing engines for space exploration projects.