BLT Boosts i-Space’s SQX-2Y Flight Test with Resounding Success

07 Nov
2023
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Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, China, on November 2nd, – Beijing Interstellar Glory Space Technology Co., Ltd. (i-Space) Reusable Liquid Oxygen-Methane Validation Rocket SQX-2Y’s launch mission achieved complete success. Bright Laser Technologies (BLT) provided full metal additive manufacturing (AM) support for the development of critical parts in SQX-2Y.

Testing of the Hyperbola-2’s First Stage at Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center

Why adopt Additive Manufacturing in SQX-2Y?

A liquid oxygen methane rocket requires a strong payload capacity while ensuring lightweight construction to maintain rocket performance. Efficiency, cost, and iteration speed are crucial to commercial rocket development. Metal 3D printing technology offers significant advantages in part structure optimization design, manufacturing complex feature combinations, and rapid prototyping of small batch parts. 3D printing processes has the advantages of high integration, lower process complexity, shorter production cycles, and reduced costs.

As a long-term partner of i-Space, BLT has assisted the i-Space in the development of several key engine components, effectively reducing i-Space’s component production cycle, saving production costs, accelerating product iteration, and enhancing development efficiency. In the early stages of developing new rocket engines, relying on 3D printing technology allows i-Space to have greater flexibility in design and significantly shortens the validation cycle for design optimization iterations.

How was BLT’s Additive Manufacturing expertise implemented in the SQX-2Y Program?

BLT has 3D printed components including T-shaped Coupling Connectors/ Tee Joints and Liquid Rocket Engine Thrust Chambers for SQX-2Y. The T-shaped Coupling Connectors were printed by BLT-S310 machine with stainless steel. The average printing time for a single piece is only 20 hours, and the formed parts exhibit high consistency in quality and performance, meeting the requirements of actual working conditions.

The Liquid Rocket Engine Thrust Chamber incorporates dozens of precision-critical nozzles. Metal 3D printing technology enables the integrated manufacturing of these nozzles, ensuring that the quality, precision, and performance of the parts meet the exacting demands for flawless aerospace applications. The Liquid Rocket Engine Thrust Chamber is printed by BLT-S310 machine with stainless steel, taking only 180 hours to complete.

The Liquid Rocket Engine Thrust Chambers Printed by BLT for SQX-2Y

Recognized as a Metal Laser-Powder Bed Fusion machine and qualified by Airbus, BLT-S310 demonstrates remarkable equipment stability, guaranteeing the precision and quality of part formation. BLT-S310 boasts a maximum build dimension of 250mm×250mm×400mm (W×D×H). The available materials for forming range from titanium alloy, superalloy, aluminum alloys, stainless steel, high strength steel to tool steel.

BLT has mature technology and rich experience in the development and production of aerospace components. With over a decade of experience in tailored product production, structural optimization design experience, comprehensive technical research and development matrix, well-proven engineering-tested technology, and stable and reliable machines, BLT is able to provide comprehensive industrial support for commercial aerospace customers. Besides, BLT facilitates efficient small-batch prototyping and rapid manufacturing of components for these customers. The products delivered by BLT have significant advantages in terms of quality, delivery lead time, and overall cost, meeting the stringent requirements of the commercial aerospace industry for equipment performance and reliability. Furthermore, BLT has also introduced a variety of materials tailored for the aviation and aerospace fields, supporting every innovative breakthrough in the commercial aerospace industry.