Posts Tagged ‘ESA

07
Mar
13

A bit more rocket science

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So the 6-month Pathfinder Project has wound up. The work done, the reports written, the grant money paid: Thank you very much Astrium/UKSA!

And the results?

Well, like most research, as many new questions asked as old ones answered. Here is the summary of the public report:

The project made significant steps in coating iridium onto C103 niobium alloy to provide a high temperature thruster material.

Initial coating trials with a refractory metal interlayer were successful, but coatings of iridium onto the substrate were problematic. However, the experiments and analysis showed that a duplex layer of refractory metal and iridium could be deposited on a modified substrate. Due to the scientific potential of the material combination and its commercial interest, work will continue on the coatings under the ESA HTAE project until May 2013.

Summary of the summary: There are a few problems, but some results are promising and as the prize is big, we continue to work towards it.

If you want to know more, please get in contact.

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18
Aug
11

Some Rocket Science

We have just started a new project. It’s for the European Space Agency and we are part of a group designing a new engine for missions to Mars and exciting stuff like that. Interesting stuff.

Our particular brief is to look at high-temperature materials an amazing number of which are made by CVD or CVI: For instance, W, Re, Ir, Nb, Ta, SiC, HfC & TaC




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