Sounding rockets will adapt for hypersonic research

USAF concluded with the American company Exos Aerospace Systems & Technologies, an agreement on the finalization of the geophysical rockets SARGE so that you can use them for research projects development of hypersonic weapons. As writes Flightglobal, the developer will need to modify a missile so that it could fly at speeds from Mach 6 to 9.

Today, the U.S. is developing several projects of hypersonic weapons, involving the creation of aircraft as missiles and hypersonic gliders. These projects require a large number of research works, part of which requires conducting various experiments.

Currently, researchers do not have a reliable tool that would allow us to conduct research at hypersonic speed. For this reason, the U.S. military is considering various options for the use of existing technologies for research in the field of hypersonic flight.

Geophysical rocket SARGE is being developed in 2014 to launch various research load at a suborbital altitude. She is 51 cm in diameter and 11 meters in height. The missile is developed by the return — after you run it down to the ground in a controlled parachute system with GPS correction reduce.

To date, Exos Aerospace Systems & Technologies conducted four test rocket launch SARGE. They were all unsuccessful. The program tests the rocket was supposed to climb to an altitude of 80 kilometers, and then using the parachute system to descend to the ground. The biggest lifting height during the test was 28 kilometers.

Now the company expects that with the funding of the U.S. air force geophysical rocket will be modified. The amount of the agreement with the company is 50 thousand dollars. Exos Aerospace Systems & Technologies, in addition to direct improvements SARGE, plans to create and launch this rocket with a towed glider.

Pre-project involves the creation of a glider with a wing span of 15.2 meters. This unit will be towed by another plane to a height of 12 kilometers. Then the glider will be disengaged and using a small built-in rocket engine to gain speed and rise to a height of 17 kilometres, which already will be the launch of SARGE.

The developers believe that by increasing the height and speed of launch, updated rocket SARGE can develop hypersonic speed. Programmes for the development of hypersonic weapons, the U.S. air force plan to use modified rocket for research in the field of new materials, control systems and various sensors.

Today for the U.S. air force also is developing hypersonic missile X-60A, to be used for suborbital research. The mass of the carrier is 1.1 tons. X-60A can carry a payload weighing up to 454 kg. Rocket could be used for research launches on suborbital trajectories in the altitude of 37 kilometers with flight speeds up to Mach 8.

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