India launched the first rocket with an entirely 3D printed engine

by alex

Such an engine can be assembled in just three days

Indian space startup Agnikul conducted the first successful launch of its suborbital rocket Agnibaan. The single-stage demonstrator rocket took off on May 30 from a launch pad on the island of Sriharikota in South India. Its height is 6.2 meters, and its weight — 570 kg. The flight lasted about 2 minutes, the rocket rose to a height of 8 km, and then fell into the Bay of Bengal.

Agnikul recognized the first flight of Agnibaan as a success: it completed its task — A rocket powered by the world's first fully 3D printed engine has taken off. Other companies, such as Relativity Space and Rocket Lab, are also using 3D printing for their space developments. However, according to the director of Agnikul, until now no one has been able to create a completely «printed» liquid rocket engine.

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The Agnikul development engine can be released in just 72-75 hours, plus some more time will be required for final development. The company says two of these engines could be assembled in just a week, compared to 10 to 12 weeks to build a similar-sized rocket engine conventionally. It took the Indian company nine months to develop and create the first set of such engines. It took about another year for the engine to lift the first rocket into the air.

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