USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

High Performance Hybrid Cycle for Advanced Upper Stage Engines

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2012 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2012
Title: High Performance Hybrid Cycle for Advanced Upper Stage Engines
Agency: DOD
Contract: FA9300-12-M-1015
Award Amount: $150,000.00


ABSTRACT: ORBITEC proposes to develop a hybrid cycle to improve the overall performance and reduce the cost of advanced upper stage engines. Upper stage engines using the High Performance Hybrid Cycle (HPHC) will have the benefits of compact design, high thrust-to-weight, and high Isp. Once matured, such engines are expected to display low cost and high reliability. In Phase I, we will conduct detailed trade studies, develop preliminary designs of the major engine components and overall engine system, quantify the benefits of the HPHC vs. current state-of-the-art cycles, and develop a detailed risk reduction plan. BENEFIT: The USAF will be the initial primary customer for the HPHC technology, followed by NASA. There is a clear and immediate need for an advanced upper stage liquid rocket engine to replace existing engines. The RL10 engine supply is expected to be depleted later this decade. A new, affordable upper stage engine for the Delta and Atlas launch vehicles, and/or their successors that uses modern manufacturing approaches to reduce cost is highly attractive for enabling DOD missions. NASA will most likely also soon require an advanced upper stage engine or engine cluster for its exploration missions. Therefore, a significant demand for HPHC-based upper stage engines within this decade and beyond is anticipated. The market for this area is very large, in the billions of dollars.

Principal Investigator:

Martin Chiaverini
Principal Propulsion Engineer
(608) 229-2732

Business Contact:

Eric E. Rice
(608) 229-2730
Small Business Information at Submission:

Orbital Technologies Corporation (ORBITEC)
Space Center, 1212 Fourier Drive Madison, WI -

EIN/Tax ID: 391628664
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No