March 14, 2011
University of Virginia students have been working with aerospace researchers to develop a scramjet engine. On Monday, a prototype of the engine was unveiled on UVa grounds in front of the School of Engineering.
The scramjet engine will be able to travel five times faster than the speed of sound, and could lead to technology which would enable a plane to travel from New York to Los Angeles in 40 minutes.
Students involved are part of the schools hypersonic jet program.
"Students have been involved in the design of the scramjet, they were also involved in the wind tunnel testing, and they were also involved in the design and fabrication of the mock-up you see here today," explained Chris Goyne, the HY-V principal investigator.
The finished scramjet engine will be used in a 2012 flight test at the NASA-Wallaps Flight Facility on Virginia's Eastern Shore. The launch will allow researchers to compare flight-test data with data collected in experiments world-wide.
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