(Yicai Global) Aug. 3 -- Landspace Technology, China's first private rocket research and development and operation firm, will conduct further testing in the second half after completing trials of its 10-ton liquid fuel rocket engine powered by oxygen and methane in March, online state media The Paper reported today.
Founded in 2015, Beijing-based Landspace is China's first privately owned rocket firm. The company develops liquid fuel rocket engines and commercial launch vehicles. It began to design China's first civilian use liquid oxygen and methane engine in the second half of 2016 and has now completed production of 80 percent of the entire engine, its founder Zhang Changwu said in a speech in Shanghai this week.
The company will conduct a series of tests on the engine in the second half to assay whether the rocket engine can withstand a space flight.
Liquid oxygen and methane are becoming a new source of power for rocket engines due to their low cost and pollution. Landspace successfully commissioned its 10-ton liquid oxygen and methane engine on March 20, making the company the world's third and China's first commercial aerospace firm to master liquid oxygen and methane engine technology after Space X and Blue Origin.
The firm will finish developing a 100-ton engine this year, complete production of the medium-sized liquid oxygen and methane-powered rocket based on this engine and strive to obtain a launch permit next year and lift off to commercialization by 2020.
Editor: Ben Armour