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SCI/TECH: US/Aus Hypersonic research to be taken to next stage

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posted on May, 19 2004 @ 04:09 AM
After the successful flight of the American hypersonic vehicle, the X-43 Hyper-X, Australian scientists prepair to fly the world's fastest air-breathing engine in 2005, in a collaborative two-nation experiment that is expected to provide a major boost to the fledgling scramjet technology.


Australian and U.S. defence interests have signed a $4.6 million contract to conduct a controlled scramjet experiment at Mach 10, or about 11,000km an hour, at Woomera, South Australia, possibly in the second half of next year.

Partners in the new project are the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the Australian Hypersonics Initiative (AHI) represented by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO), the University of Queensland, the University of New South Wales at the Australian Defence Force Academy, and the Australian National University, together with the State Governments of South Australia and Queensland.

University of Queensland also led the international HyShot program which demonstrated the world's first supersonic combustion in an atmospheric flight test at Woomera on July 30, 2002, at speeds of more than Mach 8, or 8 times the speed of sound.

HyShot used a flight-path to undertake the experiment, with a two-stage rocket booster taking the scramjet payload to an altitude of 315 km, The experiment was completed during the near vertical re-entry phase of the trajectory.

Hopefully we will see the fruits of these programs in the not to distance future. Its seems incredible that nearly 40 years after we were developing the Supersonic transport that there is no longer any such technology in service.

Related News Stories
- Amateur rocket first into space
- X-43a hypersonic research vehicle reaches Mach 7

Related Websites
- Ramjets and scramject explained
- The X-43 and Hyper-X program
- University of Queensland - CENTRE FOR HYPERSONICS

[Edited on 19-5-2004 by Zion Mainframe]


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