Daily Journals

Will Rocket Lab revolutionize rocket propulsion with the Rutherford Engine?

Rocket Lab announces their new Electron launch vehicle which uses their innovative Rutherford engine.

“The Rutherford Engine is an electric turbo-pumped LOX/RP-1 engine specifically designed for the Electron launch vehicle, capable of 4,600 lbf thrust and with an ISP of 327 s.

Rutherford adopts an entirely new propulsion cycle, making use of brushless DC motors and high performance Lithium Polymer batteries to drive its turbo pumps.

Rutherford is also the first oxygen/hydrocarbon engine to use additive manufacturing for all primary components, including the regeneratively cooled thrust chamber, injector, pumps, and main propellant valves.

Electron uses two variants of the Rutherford engine, a sea level and a vacuum engine. The vacuum variant differs only in nozzle shape, which is tailored to suit the vacuum conditions outside Earth’s atmosphere. The duplicate engine design for both stages makes Electron highly optimized for fast production.

The engine is named after the famous New Zealand born physicist Ernest Rutherford.” – Rocket Lab

The Electron Launch Vehicle is an All-Composite vehicle.

“Rocket Lab is redefining how we access space. Powered by our brand new Rutherford motor; small, fast and agile, Electron can rapidly deliver small satellites to commercial orbits at world-first price and frequency.” – Rocket Lab

Rocket Lab Website

Almost! Remember folks this is hard.

It reminds me of my first times playing Lunar Lander


Tweet from Elon Musk:

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 5.22.21 PM

You once again can order your favorite Semroc kits thanks to Randy Broadway and eRockets. Semroc has moved from North Carolina to Dayton, Ohio after its purchase. You can also still get those wonderful Semroc parts. “Semroc Flying Model Rocket Kits are of the finest quality found in the world.  Their focus on restoring the availability of model rocket kits from the past has excited nostalgic rocketeers.  Many of the models found here are reproductions of the original but modernized to the current standards in technology.  Fins are laser cut and Kevlar is used in most of the recovery systems.  All nose cones are made with quality balsa and many tubes are cut and slotted to make the assembly go easy.  Made with care in Dayton, Ohio from premium parts.”

Semroc kitted their first kit today in their new location in Dayton, Ohio.

Semroc kitted their first kit today in their new location in Dayton, Ohio.

Link to Semroc Kits at eRockets
Semroc Parts

graphic credit: SpaceX click to enlarge

graphic credit: SpaceX
click to go to graphic

The X-37B will launch again on May 6th.The launch has been named AFSPC 5 for the Air Force Space Command flight No. 5.

Scheduled Liftoff: window between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. EDT (1300-1700 GMT)

Location: Cape Canaveral

Launch Vehicle: United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket

image credit: G. De Chiara

image credit: G. De Chiara

Read more here


New release of OpenRocket 15.03 . Tube Fin aficionados rejoice because it includes experimental support for tube fins.

Changes include:

Support for scripting in simulation extensions
Experimental support for tube fins
Custom default mach number
Improved preferences UI
Fin fillet masses (no aero effects though)
Custom icons for different mass types (altimeter, hardware, etc)
Mass in the tool tip on the component tree.
And numerous little bugs and annoyances fixed

Get OpenRocket at: http://openrocket.sourceforge.net/

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