Science

India enters race to develop advanced hypersonic vehicles

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on September 07, 2020 Published on September 07, 2020

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully demonstrated the hypersonic air-breathing scramjet technology with the flight test of Hypersonic Technology Demonstration Vehicle (HSTDV) from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Launch Complex in Odisha.   -  PTI

DRDO test fires hypersonic technology demonstrator vehicle

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) has successfully demonstrated the hypersonic air-breathing scramjet technology with the flight test of Hypersonic Technology Demonstration Vehicle (HSTDV).

An official statement said the launch took place from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Launch Complex at Wheeler Island, off the coast of Odisha on Monday.

In a tweet, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said, “With this success, all critical technologies are now established to progress to the next phase.”

An official statement said this is paving the way for advanced hypersonic vehicles.

“With this successful demonstration, many critical technologies such as aerodynamic configuration for hypersonic manoeuvres, use of scramjet propulsion for ignition and sustained combustion at hypersonic flow, thermo-structural characterisation of high temperature materials, separation mechanism at hypersonic velocities among others were proven,” the statement added.

Elaborating on the details of the test, the statement said the hypersonic cruise vehicle was launched using a proven solid rocket motor, which took it to an altitude of 30 km, where the aerodynamic heat shields were separated at hypersonic Mach number.

“The cruise vehicle separated from the launch vehicle and the air intake opened as planned. The hypersonic combustion sustained and the cruise vehicle continued on its desired flight path at a velocity of six times the speed of sound at nearly 2 km per second for more than 20 seconds. The critical events like fuel injection and auto ignition of scramjet demonstrated technological maturity. The scramjet engine performed in a text book manner,” the statement said.

The parameters of launch and cruise vehicle, including the scramjet engine, were monitored by multiple tracking radars, electro-optical systems and Telemetry Stations. The scramjet engine worked at high dynamic pressure and at very high temperature. A ship was also deployed in the Bay of Bengal to monitor the performance during the cruise phase of hypersonic vehicle. All the performance parameters have indicated a resounding success of the mission, the statement added.

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Published on September 07, 2020
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