NASA and AFOSR(Air Force Office of Scientific Research) have launched a standard HPR rocket using a new environmentally safe propellant mixture called ALICE. ALICE is short for Alumninum powder and water ice.
“This collaboration has been an opportunity for graduate students to work on an environmentally-friendly propellant that can be used for flight on Earth and used in long distance space missions,” said NASA Chief Engineer Mike Ryschkewitsch at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “These sorts of university-led experimental projects encourage a new generation of aerospace engineers to think outside of the box and look at new ways for NASA to meet our exploration goals.”
The ALICE propellant is a promising new propellant that when optimised could out perform existing propellants.