Over the last few months, the guys and girls over at Copenhagen Suborbitals have been working on a small liquid fuelled rocket engine called BPM-5, as a small scale test article in prelude to the much larger BPM-100 that will power their manned Spica rocket on a suborbital flight.
The BPM-5 is designed to produce 1000lbf (4448N), burning a mixture of liquid oxygen (LOX) and ethanol/water as the propellants. This little engine will aid in the mastering of skills required for its big brother/sister not only on a production level but also at an electronics, software and procedures level.
Steady progress has been made where the first full engine is near complete. Work has also been carried out in a throat less version of the engine called the BPM-2, designed to evaluate the fuel and the mixture ratios of the fuel in order to determine the least amount of water required in the ethanol/water fuel mixture.
Engine testing of both engines is scheduled to begin shortly in preparation for the summer flights of their Nexo class of rockets of which the BPM-5 will be powering, more about these rockets in another post.
In the meantime below are a series of videos detailing the BPM-5 engine and its construction up until now.