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'The ice rocket' with new space engine


11-04-2016 12:15 BJT

The Long March-5 has a large payload. Thanks to a new generation space engine, the rocket is called "The ice rocket" and here is why. 

In order to gain supreme thrust power, the Long March-5 uses liquid Oxygen and liquid Hydrogen as fuel. Of its 800-ton body, over 90 percent of its weight comes from these liquid fuels.

However, the liquid fuel must be kept under extremely low temperatures. Minus 252 degrees for liquid oxygen and minus 183 degrees for liquid hydrogen.

That's where the name "ice rocket' comes from. Such requirements posed a great challenge for the design and engineering of the rocket, as heat isolation technology had to be introduced to isolate the icy fuel from the air and the heat generated by the space engine. It took China over ten years to crack the problem. 

Long March-5's thrust power has made a great leap, increasing eight to nine times to 50 tons of thrust power on earth and 70 tons in space.

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