Masten Space Systems joined NASA and Air Force Research Laboratory to test a rocket engine powered by liquid methane.
The company said Tuesday it demonstrated the Broadsword 25K engine’s hot fire performance at AFRL’s rocket testing facility at the Edwards Air Force Base in California.
The 10-second hot fire test supports NASA’s Tipping Point program and a cooperative research and development agreement signed between Masten and AFRL in late 2018.
Masten began hot fire tests in July 2019 and concluded the series on Dec. 10 with 10 seconds of steady state combustion.
“Collaborating with Masten provided this opportunity utilizing our established propulsion testing infrastructure to assist the commercial space sector’s emerging small launch capabilities and lunar science missions,” said Julie Carlile, deputy chief of AFRL’s Rocket Propulsion Division.
The Tipping Point program uses public-private partnerships to support NASA’s technological needs and bolster the U.S. industrial economy.