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Students 3D Print Rocket Engine

On November 17, the student-run USC Liquid Propulsion Lab (LPL) gathered in Southern California’s Mojave Desert to execute the world’s first test fire of a student-built 3D printed rocket engine made entirely on campus. The engine performed perfectly, proving their design and manufacturing methods are capable of withstanding the immense pressures of a combustion. This engine in particular, named James, experienced 725 pounds of pressure in its chamber, producing 600 pounds of thrust. But it is just one in a fleet of 3D printed engines produced by LPL. The largest of which , called Balerion, is capable of 2,250 pounds of thrust and is planned to be tested for the first time in the spring. “We’re learning all the steps that need to be done to make a static fire,” said Jan Fessl, co-lead engineer of LPL and master’s student in USC Viterbi’s Department of Astronautical Engineering . “We […]

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