Conceptual design of the LE-7-based reusable launch systems

Masumi Nakajima, Kazuhide Mizobata, Keisuke Sawada

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Unmanned partly reusable launch systems using the LE-7 engines of Japan, modified for reuse, for the first stage and using the near-term technology are designed conceptually. Four options are considered, which are: (1) an all-rocket, two-stage system in which the rocketpowered second stage is expended, (2) an all-rocket, two-stage system in which the first stage flies back to the launch site and the rocket-powered second stage is expended, (3) a rocket-scram-jet combination, threestage system in which both the second stage using a scram-jet engine and the rocket-powered third stage are expended, and (4) a rocket-scram-jet combination, three-stage system in which the reusable second stage uses a scram-jet engine and the rocket-powered third stage is expended. The assumed mission is to deliver a 1 ton payload to LEO inclined at 52 degrees. The aerodynamic characteristics and weight estimates are made using the existing methods. It is found that the use of scram-jet engines in the second stage does not improve performance. Option 1 has the best performance, but Option 2 is more flexible. Performance of Option 2 depends mainly on the lift-todrag ratio of the first stage in the subsonic speed range.

Original languageEnglish
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1998
Event36th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit, 1998 - Reno, United States
Duration: 1998 Jan 121998 Jan 15

Other

Other36th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit, 1998
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityReno
Period98/1/1298/1/15

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Space and Planetary Science

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