SSE™-Superior Stability Engine
Historically, a lack of understanding about combustion instability has driven development efforts to design rocket engines for performance and then try to “fix” combustion instability issues with iterative testing. This greatly increases development cost and risk. In contrast, the Superior Stability Engine was designed with a high stability margin, using the insight provided by the UCDS Process, while also achieving high performance.
In the mid-1990’s, GTL (as PacAstro) developed the PA-E15k liquid rocket engine. This 15,000 lbf thrust LOX/RP-1 rocket engine was test fired 80 times at EAFB, demonstrating stable operation and high performance. A higher thrust version, PA-E30k, was designed and fabricated.
In addition to rocket engines and propellant tanks, GTL is developing a variety of rocket propulsion system components. These components include high-performance cryogenic valves and propellant lines.
GTL has developed and tested helium and non-helium pressurization systems for liquid rocket vehicles. GTL’s non-helium pressurization system provides 67% system mass reduction and 90% volume reduction compared to equivalent helium-based pressurization systems. This technology has been tested and has achieved TRL 5/6.