Encyclopedia Astronautica
RD-3A


Glushko Lox/Alcohol rocket engine. R-3A. Out of Production. Project for R-3A experimental missile. Stopped in favour of RD-103.

Application: R-3A.

Thrust (sl): 390.000 kN (87,670 lbf). Engine: 885 kg (1,951 lb). Propellant Formulation: Lox/Alcohol-96%. Oxidizer to Fuel Ratio: 0.

AKA: RD-102?; RD-3A.
Status: Out of Production.
Unfuelled mass: 885 kg (1,951 lb).
Height: 3.12 m (10.24 ft).
Thrust: 390.00 kN (87,670 lbf).
Specific impulse: 214 s.
Specific impulse sea level: 214 s.
First Launch: 1951-53.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
Associated Launch Vehicles
  • R-3A Russian intermediate range ballistic missile. So much new technology was involved for the R-3 that it was deemed necessary to build an R-3A intermediate experimental rocket, based on the R-2. This would be flown to test new construction methods, guidance systems, and high energy propellants. The R-3A was specified in 1949 to have a 900 to 1000 km range with a payload of 1530 kg; an unfuelled mass of 4100 kg; 20,500 kg of propellants; and a lift-off thrust of 40 tonnes. The R-3A could also serve as a prototype for a more modest IRBM. Flight tests of the R-3A were scheduled for October 1951. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • Glushko Russian manufacturer of rocket engines and rockets. Glushko Design Bureau, Russia. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Lox/Alcohol Liquid oxygen was the earliest, cheapest, safest, and eventually the preferred oxidiser for large space launchers. Its main drawback is that it is moderately cryogenic, and therefore not suitable for military uses where storage of the fuelled missile and quick launch are required. Alcohol (C2H5OH) was the fuel used for the German V-2 rocket, and the first derivative rocket engines in the United States, Soviet Union, and China used it as well. Better performance was achieved by increasing the alcohol concentration in the post-war engines. But after better-performance rocket-grade kerosene was developed by Rocketdyne in the REAP program of 1953, use of alcohol was abandoned. More...

Bibliography
  • Semenov, Yuri P Editor, Raketno-kosmicheskaya korporatsiya 'Energia' imeni S P Koroleva, Moscow, Russia, 1996.
  • Vetrov, G S, S. P. Korolev i evo delo, Nauka, Moscow, 1998.

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