Friday, December 12, 2008

Back to Hardware....

We are   were going to go out to the test site and static test the blue ball with a “solid” catalyst. (The FAR event was canceled due to 75mph winds forecast on Saturday as I was typing this.)

John Carmack sent me several catalyst styles, one kind was a pourable ring catalyst from It looks like the picture on the right here. So we had some stainless plates  water jet cut by Thunderbird Water Jet to hold the catalyst rings, and we added a sintered stainless diffuser plate. and reassembled the motor.

Stainless motor 003

When we first cut the motor apart the inside was kind of nasty with permangenate residue.



Catalyst motor 001

A picture of the sintered diffuser plate welded to the support ring.

Catalyst motor 003

A view from the other side as it is welded into the top of the motor.


Catalyst motor 007

A view of the waterjet cut bottom support plate. The area between the two plates is filled with the ring catalyst. The fittings on the side as shown on the view of the motor top allow us to shake the catalyst out and replace it.

Catalyst motor 009

The reassembled motor ready for testing…. soon.


David said...

Thanks for keeping the information flowing. Some nice welding going on there. Hopefully this will result in an improved engine. How would you determine the efficiency of the different catalysts in producing the break down of the peroxide? I suppose it would be documented with the product being used. Any way, looking forward to the tests.

Rocket Dude said...

Which servos are you using these days?

Paul Breed said...

For the main valve I'm using a custom servo built from a Novak "Goat crawler" brush less sensored motor with a pot for feedback run by my own electronics.

Everything else is dynamixel RX-64's

Wouter said...

Do you think that the residue was the cause for the low efficiency of your engine? Could you have had a chance of competing if you cleaned out the engine after each flight? Obviously this problem would still require a long-term solution, but could it have given you a shot at some prize-money?

Hope I don't make you depressed by making you think about this...

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