Author Topic: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine  (Read 870614 times)

Offline edzieba

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1860 on: 08/02/2022 02:57 pm »
I assume Vettedrmr was talking about the plan to run full qualification testing on the second flight pair of BE-4 engines, concurrently with acceptance testing and integration of the first pair onto the Vulcan slated to launch the Peregrine lander. With the idea that if qualification tests pass (for whatever definition of "pass" they choose), they'd fly Vulcan's first mission without having qualification-tested the specific engines for that flight.

I might be confused on this. Isn't qualification testing for the design and manufacturing of the part and its system (stuff its attached to).  So that it only is done once and not for every engine/widget made?
Yes.
Qual testing: tests if the engine design functions as expected and meets all specification requirements. Performed if the design changes (or if the specifications change).
Acceptance testing: tests if a given engine functions as designed.
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Side question - is it standard for all engines to be test fired before use (ignoring spacex which I know does this).
Yes, if the engine design allows for being fired more than once. Not an option for solids, and not some liquid propellant engines. e.g. the NK-15 used pyrotechnic valves for simplicity and weight, but this meant that after ignition the engine would have needed to be disassembled and undergone major part replacement before it could be fired again (and all the new parts and reassembly process would then be untested, and you'd be back to square one).

Offline whitelancer64

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1861 on: 08/02/2022 05:48 pm »
I assume Vettedrmr was talking about the plan to run full qualification testing on the second flight pair of BE-4 engines, concurrently with acceptance testing and integration of the first pair onto the Vulcan slated to launch the Peregrine lander. With the idea that if qualification tests pass (for whatever definition of "pass" they choose), they'd fly Vulcan's first mission without having qualification-tested the specific engines for that flight.

I might be confused on this. Isn't qualification testing for the design and manufacturing of the part and its system (stuff its attached to).  So that it only is done once and not for every engine/widget made?

Side question - is it standard for all engines to be test fired before use (ignoring spacex which I know does this).

Yes, acceptance tests are pretty much standard for rocket engines made today. For example, the RS-68A for the Delta IV does a 3 minute burn for an acceptance test.
"One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to." - Elon Musk
"There are lies, damned lies, and launch schedules." - Larry J

Offline whitelancer64

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1862 on: 08/02/2022 05:55 pm »

1..From your experience, what qualification tests do you think ULA will have to do to verify and validate Vulcan and BE-4 are operating correctly against the Vulcan design specifications?
2. Would they do Acceptance tests to certify that Vulcan is ready for launch, and if so, what would they be?

The acceptance test for the BE-4 engine is a 500 second burn, which verifies the engine works and performs to spec. There will be some specific parameters they'd have to hit in terms of thrust, throttle setting, duration, etc. as you'd expect. Setting up the engine on the test stand, doing the burn, and tear down should not take very long to do.

Integration of the engines into the Vulcan rocket also won't take very long, it's the processing and testing after that's done, all the integrated testing that needs to be done once the booster and upper stages are combined, that will take some time, since it will be the first time that a Centaur V will be put through its paces on the launch pad.

The Vulcan acceptance test will be a completed Wet Dress Rehearsal on the launch pad.
"One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to." - Elon Musk
"There are lies, damned lies, and launch schedules." - Larry J

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1863 on: 08/04/2022 01:06 am »
https://twitter.com/torybruno/status/1554840748960256000

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The BE4 Flight engine #1 is in Texas for its acceptance firing. But I forgot to share this picture taken right before it left Kent. Standard Reference included for scale…

Offline Hog

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1864 on: 08/04/2022 01:17 pm »

1..From your experience, what qualification tests do you think ULA will have to do to verify and validate Vulcan and BE-4 are operating correctly against the Vulcan design specifications?
2. Would they do Acceptance tests to certify that Vulcan is ready for launch, and if so, what would they be?

The acceptance test for the BE-4 engine is a 500 second burn, which verifies the engine works and performs to spec. There will be some specific parameters they'd have to hit in terms of thrust, throttle setting, duration, etc. as you'd expect. Setting up the engine on the test stand, doing the burn, and tear down should not take very long to do.

Integration of the engines into the Vulcan rocket also won't take very long, it's the processing and testing after that's done, all the integrated testing that needs to be done once the booster and upper stages are combined, that will take some time, since it will be the first time that a Centaur V will be put through its paces on the launch pad.

The Vulcan acceptance test will be a completed Wet Dress Rehearsal on the launch pad.
So the Flight Readiness Firing(FRF) that will be performed on the pad following the completed WDR is separate from engine qualification and acceptance testing?

What kind of duration will the FRF be?  Shuttle was approx. 20 seconds in duration.
Paul

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1865 on: 08/08/2022 03:39 pm »
https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1556666213538926594

Quote
There was a minor (but correctable) issue in testing the first BE-4 flight engine for Vulcan. May set the timeline back a week or so. ULA is still likely to take delivery of both engines during the next four to six weeks, allowing Vulcan to debut during the first half of 2023.

Offline whitelancer64

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1866 on: 08/08/2022 04:18 pm »

1..From your experience, what qualification tests do you think ULA will have to do to verify and validate Vulcan and BE-4 are operating correctly against the Vulcan design specifications?
2. Would they do Acceptance tests to certify that Vulcan is ready for launch, and if so, what would they be?

The acceptance test for the BE-4 engine is a 500 second burn, which verifies the engine works and performs to spec. There will be some specific parameters they'd have to hit in terms of thrust, throttle setting, duration, etc. as you'd expect. Setting up the engine on the test stand, doing the burn, and tear down should not take very long to do.

Integration of the engines into the Vulcan rocket also won't take very long, it's the processing and testing after that's done, all the integrated testing that needs to be done once the booster and upper stages are combined, that will take some time, since it will be the first time that a Centaur V will be put through its paces on the launch pad.

The Vulcan acceptance test will be a completed Wet Dress Rehearsal on the launch pad.
So the Flight Readiness Firing(FRF) that will be performed on the pad following the completed WDR is separate from engine qualification and acceptance testing?

What kind of duration will the FRF be?  Shuttle was approx. 20 seconds in duration.

Correct, that's separate. Every engine built will have an acceptance firing, while the Vulcan is likely to do a FRF hot fire on the pad only once. Historically, this has been the case with most rockets, SpaceX is the odd one out.

I don't work for ULA so I have no insight into the duration of a hot fire test. My guess is that it would be a single digit time.

The Delta IV FRF hot fire test was about 5 seconds.

https://spaceflightnow.com/delta/delta4/021014frf/
« Last Edit: 08/08/2022 07:30 pm by whitelancer64 »
"One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to." - Elon Musk
"There are lies, damned lies, and launch schedules." - Larry J

Offline Jim

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1867 on: 08/08/2022 08:13 pm »

Correct, that's separate. Every engine built will have an acceptance firing, while the Vulcan is likely to do a FRF hot fire on the pad only once. Historically, this has been the case with most rockets, SpaceX is the odd one out.

The Delta IV FRF hot fire test was about 5 seconds.


Atlas V didn't do one.  And Delta IV was a static fire with only a qual first stage.

Offline Robert_the_Doll

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1868 on: 08/23/2022 12:12 am »
Frasier Cain interviewed Tory Bruno today:


While some information has been repeated, such as BE-4 is going to exceed thrust and ISP, it also has some interesting insights on the first two flight BE-4s in Texas and 36:05, he mentions that in addition to those first two, that the next couple of pairs are being built in the factory (Huntsville?).

Offline DrHeywoodFloyd

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1869 on: 08/23/2022 12:25 am »
It is getting very close to Tory Bruno receiving into ULA factory the first of many BE-4 engines to come....I estimate it will be this week, or early next week.

Offline Vettedrmr

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1870 on: 08/23/2022 12:44 am »
There was a minor (but correctable) issue in testing the first BE-4 flight engine for Vulcan. May set the timeline back a week or so. ULA is still likely to take delivery of both engines during the next four to six weeks, allowing Vulcan to debut during the first half of 2023.

4-6 weeks would be early-mid September.  Still close, though!
Aviation/space enthusiast, retired control system SW engineer, doesn't know anything!

Offline DrHeywoodFloyd

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1871 on: 08/23/2022 03:08 am »
There was a minor (but correctable) issue in testing the first BE-4 flight engine for Vulcan. May set the timeline back a week or so. ULA is still likely to take delivery of both engines during the next four to six weeks, allowing Vulcan to debut during the first half of 2023.

4-6 weeks would be early-mid September.  Still close, though!

Yeah, I think I will drop Tory a tweet about this progress in 2 Weeks... because when I tweeted him at the beginning of August he indicated at that stage 1-2 weeks...

Anyway does anyone know what is happening with the certification of the 4670  Test Stand at Huntsville, because at the end of June there was a picture of a BE-4 on the test stand, and so by now one would have expected a test firing... does anyone have an update?

Offline DrHeywoodFloyd

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1872 on: 08/23/2022 07:09 am »
Frasier Cain interviewed Tory Bruno today:


While some information has been repeated, such as BE-4 is going to exceed thrust and ISP, it also has some interesting insights on the first two flight BE-4s in Texas and 36:05, he mentions that in addition to those first two, that the next couple of pairs are being built in the factory (Huntsville?).

It is interesting that Tory mentioned the un-mentionable..."NUCLEAR"...!! In terms of Nuclear Thermal propulsion.

Good on him!

It is interesting that Blue Origin has a contract to develop nuclear propulsion for spacecraft.....
https://www.businessinsider.com/jeff-bezos-blue-origin-award-pentagon-nuclear-space-contract-darpa-2021-4

Blue Origin are also develop a space tug..
https://www.geekwire.com/2021/founded-blue-origin-veterans-starfish-space-raises-7m-satellite-servicing-tug/

I hypothesise that Blue origin Will develop a Space tug that is repelled by nuclear thermal propulsion to move cargo from orbital Reef to the moon and back. In addition, as nuclear thermal propulsion engines use hydrogen, this will be fuelled by hydrogen from the moon.



Offline woods170

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1873 on: 08/23/2022 12:48 pm »
It is getting very close to Tory Bruno receiving into ULA factory the first of many BE-4 engines to come....I estimate it will be this week, or early next week.

The issue mentioned in Eric Berger's tweet (see upthread) has set back the schedule a few weeks.

Offline DrHeywoodFloyd

Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1874 on: 08/23/2022 02:22 pm »
It is getting very close to Tory Bruno receiving into ULA factory the first of many BE-4 engines to come....I estimate it will be this week, or early next week.

The issue mentioned in Eric Berger's tweet (see upthread) has set back the schedule a few weeks.

Yes I'm aware of Eric Berger's tweet .... I intend to tweet Tory Bruno for an update about the 14th of September...

Offline Rakietwawka2021

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1875 on: 08/23/2022 04:02 pm »
https://twitter.com/torybruno/status/1562090869158707200?t=szcy4Vj9LTqrku0eXUmOww&s=19

"OK. Going very well.  Second flight engine is at the ATP hot fire stand in Texas.  FE1 cold ATP found a minor assembly issue we wanted to adjust.  It'll hot fire after FE2 is done.  Pre-qual testing completed a few weeks ago.  Super pleased with the results and BE4's performance."

Offline Robert_the_Doll

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1876 on: 08/23/2022 06:05 pm »
Good to see confirmation that FE2 is complete and was successfully and safely delivered to Corn Ranch for its ATP. Also good to see that Blue Origin and ULA are agile and planned well enough to be able to switch the engine firing order.

Offline Robert_the_Doll

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1877 on: 08/23/2022 06:25 pm »
Also, in case anyone missed it, the question concerning Kent or Huntsville for the next set of engines was also answered:
https://twitter.com/torybruno/status/1562115304884420608
« Last Edit: 08/23/2022 06:27 pm by Robert_the_Doll »

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1878 on: 08/26/2022 10:15 pm »
https://twitter.com/torybruno/status/1563279095940915200

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@blueorigin 's BE4 Flight Engine #2 is on the test stand in Texas for acceptance testing prior to installation on #Vulcan 's first flight vehicle.  Should I get a picture for you guys?  Any interest?

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Re: Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine
« Reply #1879 on: 08/26/2022 10:28 pm »
https://twitter.com/torybruno/status/1563292230957166593

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Ok, then.   I spy a BE4 Flight Engine #2 on the test stand...
« Last Edit: 08/26/2022 10:28 pm by FutureSpaceTourist »

 

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