Stratolaunch fires up its rocket engine preburner

Preburner test firing

A full-scale fuel preburner for Stratolaunch’s PGA rocket engine undergoes a test firing at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. (Stratolaunch Photo)

Stratolaunch Systems, the space venture founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, says it has successfully completed the first hot-fire test of a key component for its hydrogen-fueled PGA rocket engine.

The full-scale hydrogen preburner was fired up last Friday at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, less than a year after design work started.

“This is the first step in proving the performance and highly efficient design of the PGA engine. The hot-fire test is an incredible milestone for both the propulsion team and Stratolaunch,” Jeff Thornburg, vice president of propulsion at Stratolaunch, said today in a news release.

Get the full story on GeekWire.

About Alan Boyle

Award-winning science writer, creator of Cosmic Log, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.
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