Chinese scientists have successfully conducted the test of what is considered to be the world’s most powerful rocket engine. This is an indication that China is stepping forward with its launch vehicle technologies. Scientists from the China Corporation of Space Science and Technology (CASC) conducted the test of the monolithic solid-propellant rocket engine on October 19, 2021. This event marks an important step for the CASC and the country as a whole.
CASC, which is a state-owned contractor of the Chinese space program, developed the monolithic solid rocket motor. The records show that the rocket motor is 3.5 meters (11.5 feet) in diameter and that it has a thrust of 500 tons. China’s state broadcaster called, CCTV, published the record, and the broadcaster also mentioned that this rocket motor is the largest one in the world. CCTV further commented on the rocket’s “world-leading” technologies; the broadcaster additionally mentioned, “This success marks a substantial increase in China’s solid-carrying capacity and is of great significance to the future development of large and heavy-lift launch vehicle technologies.”
The published report mentions that the rocket was designed independently by CASC’s Academy of Aerospace Solid Propulsion Technology with a “high performance” fiber composite shell and a supersized nozzle. It comes with a propellant capacity of 150 tons, and CCTV has predicted that the rocket motor will play a central role in China’s future manned missions to the Moon and Mars.
This is an important step for the Chinese specialists because it would enable them to further develop heavy-class launch vehicles. The CASC scientists are researching the development of a five-section rocket engine that will be 3.5 meters in diameter with more than 1000 tons in thrust.
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Only in December last year, CASC conducted its three-section solid-propellant civil rocket engine which was 11.6 meters long and 3.2 meters in diameter.