Development study on ATREX engine

Nobuhiro Tanatusgu*, Tetsuya Sato, Yoshihiro Naruo, Takeshi Kashiwagi, Tomoaki Mizutani, Toshiyuki Monji, Kenji Hamabe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


This is the status report of the development study on ATREX engine (Air Turbo Ramjet) that is now under way in the Instutute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS) in cooperation with the Ishikawajima Harima Heavy Industries (IHI), the Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI). ATREX engine will be applied for the propulsion system of fly-back booster of TSTO space plane. ATREX is the fan-boosted ramjet producing the effective thrust from sea level static to flight Mach number 6. ATREX is worked on the expander cycle with precooling incoming air as shown in Fig.1. ATREX employs the tip turbine configuration which allows compactness and light weight of turbo machinery and the variable geometry airintake and plug nozzle which allows the wide range flight conditions. ATREX development study has been conducted with the sea level static tests since 1990. ATREX engine for tests is the scaled model designated by "ATREX-500" of which fan inlet diameter is 300 mm and overall length 2,200 mm. From 1992 have been performed the wind tunnel tests on the primary aerodynamic components such as the axisymmetric variable geometry air intakes, the precoolers and the variable geometry plug nozzles. The application study on advanced carbon-carbon composite for the tip-turbine and fan assembly has been conducted. This study status is presented in the another session of this IAF congress 1. The flight test of ATREX is now planning to verify the engine performance and functions in the practical flight conditions by using an unmanned flying test bench. In 1995 was tested ATREX-500 installing the precooler under the sea level static conditions to examine the engine performance and the icing problem on the precooler. The present paper addresses primarily the test results of precooled ATREX engine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-170
Number of pages6
JournalActa Astronautica
Issue number2-8
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Jan 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering


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