A joint project carried out by the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) and Bayern-Chemie has now succeeded in developing and qualifying a new solid-propellant rocket motor in the one-tonne class. On 13 November 2023, DLR’s Mobile Rocket Base (Mobile Raketenbasis; MORABA) department of DLR’s Space Operations and Astronaut Training facility launched the first research rocket to be powered by a single-stage ‘Red Kite’ motor from the Andøya Space Center in northern Norway.
A team from Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt – Mobile Rocket Base (DLR-MORABA) and the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) conducted the launch of the Hypersonic Flight Research Experiment (HIFLIER) from the Esrange test center in Kiruna, Sweden.
On 21 October 2022 at 09:25, the MAPHEUS 12 research rocket of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrums für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) took off from the Esrange Space Center near Kiruna in northern Sweden. It reached an altitude of 260 kilometres before descending back to Earth on a parachute. On board for the first time were nerve cells. The goal is to understand how their electrical signals deviate in microgravity. The research team also investigated how the polarity of cells behaves under microgravity in connection with the development of cancer. The flight also served as a test run under space conditions for new types of solar cells as well as for an encryption technology that will protect the sensitive data of life support systems and space vehicles in the future. It also marked the first time that a reusable ignition unit was used in the upper stage.
We are pleased to announce the successful launch of STORT on Andøya on June 26, 2022. The three-stage launch vehicle used Brazilian S31 and S30 motors, as well as an Improved Orion motor. We take this opportunity to thank our Brazilian cooperation partners Departamento de Ciência e Tecnologia Aeroespacial (DCTA) with Instituto de Aeronaútica e Espaço (IAE) for their many years of collaboration. STORT is yet another milestone in the joint success story of high-altitude research missions.
On 1 October 2021, an S50 solid-propellant rocket motor, which will form the first two stages of the new VLM-1 launch vehicle, successfully completed a static firing test in the operational area of Usina Coronel Abner (UCA), in São José dos Campos, São Paulo state, Brazil. The rocket motor that has now been tested will also be used for a new European sounding rocket.
On 24 May 2021, three experiments from the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) set off on their short journey into microgravity and back again. The DLR sounding rocket MAPHEUS 11 lifted off from the Esrange Space Center in northern Sweden and carried the materials science experiments MARS, X-RISE and SOMEX to an altitude of 221 kilometres. In the 15 minutes between launch and landing, the payloads followed a parabolic path after the propulsion systems were jettisoned. This allowed five and a half minutes of microgravity to carry out the experiments.
Building on the MOU that was previously signed between DLR – Space Operations and Astronaut Training and Southern Launch on 26 March 2020, the organisations have now signed a Cooperation Agreement further enhancing the relationship.
The German-Swedisch REXUS/BEXUS-Program (Rocket and Balloon Experiments for University Students) starts its next round: From now, students of German universities can apply for scientific investigations on sounding rockets and balloons with their own experiments.
Students from ESA member states can apply directly via the ESA homepage.
German MORABA News: BAYERN-CHEMIE und DLR schließen Vertrag zur Entwicklung und Herstellung von Feststoffraketenmotoren
Nach ausführlichen Verhandlungen haben die Firma BAYERN-CHEMIE und die Abteilung Mobile Raketenbasis (MORABA) der Einrichtung Raumflugbetrieb und Astronautentraining des Deutschen Zentrums für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR) einen Vertrag zur Entwicklung und Herstellung von Feststoffraketenmotoren unterzeichnet.
At November 15 2019, the 30th VSB-30 sounding rocket launch lifted its scientific payload to an apogee of 266 km. This 30th flight of a Veiculo Sondagem Bostado 30 (VSB-30) represents an outstanding milestone in the cooperation of the Mobile Rocket Base (MORABA) with its Brazilian partner DCTA/IAE.