The project will:
- Validate an innovative landing system, incorporating electric ducted fans. This European recovery system would allow a soft and precise landing without using the main engine, enabling high component reusability.
- Investigate the atmospheric re-entry of the first stage of the MESO micro launcher.
- Design of durable and cost-effective solutions for reusable structural design and cryogenic tanks.
The technology of Electric Ducted Fans has been largely investigated by other European companies and research centres in the context of Drone and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) development, mainly for VTOL (Vertical Take-off and Landing) aircrafts. However, it was never transferred to a space sector. The experts selecting this project for the European Commission agreed on its technical impact and excellence.
Our colleague, Davide Bonetti, from Deimos Space stated: “One of the major challenges of this project will be to verify the feasibility of the return of the first stage of the rocket. Several missions and configurations will be studied in order to choose the most promising one”
The RRTB consortium combines the industrial expertise of Thales Alenia Space, Deimos Space, Heron Engineering, TOSEDA and Pangea Aerospace with the research experience and excellence of the Von Karman Institute, RWTH Aachen and Technische Universität München in order to create a disruptive European recovery technology to reduce the cost of access-to-space. More information about the project can be found at www.rrtb.eu.
We will be leading the mission design and development activities including: trajectory design, orbit and launch site selection, risk and safety assessment, feasibility assessment, requirement definition and will be performing GNC and Flying qualities tasks towards a safe and reliable way to control the vehicle during the re-entry and landing phase of the mission. We will also investigate the passive atmospheric reentry of the first stage together with Pangea Aerospace and Von Karman Institute.