Castro, Joaquin H. Pratt and Whitney, West Palm Beach, Florida.
- Scramjet operation
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An air-breathing jet engine that relies for propulsion on the compressing or ramming effect on air taken into the engine inlet at supersonic speeds, normally when the aircraft is traveling at speeds above Mach 4. The term is derived from “supersonic combustion ramjet.” Scramjet technology now in development is expected to make global rapid travel and affordable orbit access a reality in coming years. A breakthrough was realized in the spring of 2003 when a flight-weight scramjet engine was run at 4.5 and 6.5 times the speed of sound (Mach 4.5 and 6.5) using conventional hydrocarbon fuel. More significantly, this represents the first flight-weight, hydrocarbon-fueled scramjet engine. This test was conducted by the Pratt & Whitney Space Propulsion Hydrocarbon Scramjet Engine Technology (HySET) team, in partnership with and sponsored by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratories (AFRL) Propulsion Directorate. See also: Mach number
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