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ISRO tests ‘Made-in-India’ 3D-printed rocket engine. What is it?

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ISRO tests ‘Made-in-India’ 3D-printed rocket engine. What is it?

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) tested a liquid rocket engine created using additive manufacturing technology on Thursday, marking a significant accomplishment.

The PS4 engine from the upper stage of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket, dubbed “the Workhorse of ISRO,” which has an outstanding record of delivering satellites to Low-Earth Orbits, was utilised in the 665-second test, according to the space agency.

With a vacuum thrust of 7.33 kN, the PS4 engine, which is typically made by machining and welding, is essential to the operation of the PSLV rocket’s fourth stage. When it comes to precisely launching payloads into the designated orbits on the PSLV, the PS4 engine is essential. These days, the space agency uses it more and more as a dependable orbital platform for a range of missions.

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The PSLV’s first stage (PS1) response control system also makes use of this same engine.

The engine was created by the ISRO division Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) and runs on earth-storable bipropellant combinations, with pressure-fed monomethyl hydrazine serving as the fuel and nitrogen tetroxide as the oxidizer.

Why are the engines for ISRO 3D printing? Five benefits

The PS4 engine has been redesigned by ISRO using the Laser Powder Bed Fusion technology. Significant benefits have resulted from this:

• The engine now only has one piece instead of its original fourteen.

• 19 weld joints have also been removed from the new design.

• The amount of raw materials used per engine is significantly reduced as a result of this development.

• In particular, it lowers the amount of metal powder used in traditional production techniques from 13.7 kg to 565 kg of forgings and sheets.

• This redesign has also resulted in a 60% reduction in the total manufacturing time.

‘Produced in India’ Three-dimensional rocket motor

An Indian business called WIPRO 3D, which is a division of the well-known Wipro firm, created the engine. WIPRO 3D, a prominent supplier of metal additive manufacturing solutions and services, was founded in 2012.

At the ISRO Propulsion Complex at Mahendragiri, the engine underwent a hot test. It is intended to be incorporated into the standard PSLV curriculum.

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