Encyclopedia Astronautica
Air/Kerosene


Ambient air (78 % nitrogen, 21% oxygen, etc.) is scooped up by air intakes and used in turbojet, turbofan, ramjet, scramjet, or other airbreathing engines. It is used to burn aviation-grade kerosene, commercial grade JP-4 or JP-5, their military equivalents, or special high-temperature blends such as those used in the SR-71.

Oxidizer: Air. Fuel: Kerosene. Fuel Density: 0.806 g/cc. Fuel Freezing Point: -73 deg C. Fuel Boiling Point: 147 deg C.

More... - Chronology...


Associated Spacecraft
  • M-42 Russian manned rocketplane. Cancelled 1957. Several variants of the Myasishchev Buran trisonic intercontinental cruise missile M-42 cruise stage were studied. More...
  • M-44 Russian manned ramjet-powered research aircraft. Study 1958. Air-launched derivative of the Buran Mach 3 high altitude cruise missile system, proposed for use as an unmanned high speed research vehicle. More...

Associated Engines
  • Atar 9K SNECMA turbojet engine. 48 kN. Out of Production. Isp=2020s. More...
  • D-18T Lotarev turbofan engine. 229.4 kN. Used on An-225 launch aircraft for Interim HOTOL, MAKS concepts. Development ended 1988. Isp=9000s. More...
  • EKR Ramjet Bondaryuk ramjet engine. 6.130 kN. EKR Stage 2. Study 1953. Isp=1580s. Study for an experimental winged cruise missile. Not developed but formed basis for Burya and Buran missiles. More...
  • F100-100 Pratt and Whitney turbofan engine. 63.9 kN. In Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1552s. More...
  • F101 Pratt and Whitney turbofan engine. 75.6 kN. In Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1980s. More...
  • J57-19 Pratt and Whitney turbojet engine. 53.8 kN. Out of production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=5142s. Used on B-52 launch aircraft for X-15A. First flight 1959. More...
  • J57-8 Pratt and Whitney turbojet engine. 45.4 kN. Out of production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1414s. Used on Caleb launch vehicle. First flight 1960. More...
  • J58 Pratt and Whitney turbojet engine. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=2084s. More...
  • J75-17 Pratt and Whitney turbojet engine. 71.6 kN. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1800s. More...
  • J79-17 GE turbojet engine. 52.8 kN. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=2020s. More...
  • J79- 5 GE turbojet engine. 45.8 kN. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=2020s. More...
  • J85-GE-5 GE turbojet engine. 34.3 kN. Carries SpaceShipOne to release point 65 km from Mohave Airport base, then releases it at 15 km altitude at 215 kph. Wing area 43.5 sq m. Isp=2000s. More...
  • J93-3 GE turbojet engine. 86.7 kN. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=2084s. More...
  • JT9D-3A Pratt and Whitney turbofan engine. 208.8 kN. Out of Production. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=10939s. More...
  • NK-231 Kuznetsov turbofan engine. 226.5 kN. Tu-160. Development ended 1992. Turbofan engine used in Tu-160. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1980s. More...
  • R-31 Lyulka turbojet engine. 91.2 kN. MiG-25. Out of Production. Used in MiG-25. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=2073s. More...
  • RB-211-22B Rolls Royce turbofan engine. 29.4 kN. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=9900s. Used on L1011 launch aircraft for Pegasus, Pegasus XL. First flight 1990. More...
  • RD-018 Bondaryuk ramjet engine. 98 kN. Buran missile, early version. Out of Production. Isp=1500s. 1.8 m diameter ramjet engine initially considered for Buran M-42. RD-020 adpopted later during development. More...
  • RD-020 Bondaryuk ramjet engine. 103 kN. Buran M-42. Development ended 1957. Isp=1500s. Ramjet for Buran cruise missile. 8,500 km cruise at Mach 3.1 at 18-20 km altitude. More...
  • RD-012U Bondaryuk ramjet engine. 76 kN. Burya. Out of production. 1.2 m diameter ramjet to be used in Burya cruise missile. Thrust is maximum thrust at cruise altitude. Specific impulse is that at cruise design point. Isp=1500s. First flight 1957. More...
  • RD-36-41 Lyulka turbojet engine. 158.4 kN. T-4. Out of Production. Used in Sukhoi March 3 aircraft. Thrust is maximum sea level thrust; specific impulse is sea level value at that thrust. Isp=1980s. More...
  • RJ47 Wright ramjet engine. 44.6 kN. Development ended 1958. Thrust is maximum thrust at cruise altitude. Specific impulse is that at cruise design point. Isp=1200s. Used on Navaho G-38 launch vehicle. More...
  • XJ40-WE-1 Wright turbojet engine. 48.5 kN. Out of production. Thrust is maximum thrust at cruise altitude. Specific impulse is that at cruise design point. Isp=1800s. Used on Navaho X-10 launch vehicle. First flight 1955. More...
  • XRJ47-W-5 Wright ramjet engine. 33.4 kN. Out of production. Thrust is maximum thrust at cruise altitude. Specific impulse is that at cruise design point. Isp=1200s. Used on Navaho G-26 launch vehicle. First flight 1956. More...

Associated Stages
  • An-124 Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded mass 430,000 kg. Antonov cargo aircraft swept wing. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 200,000 kg, 900 kph at 8 to 9 km altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 270 m/s. More...
  • An-225 Subsonic rocket carrier. Loaded/empty mass 600,000/216,000 kg. Thrust 1,387.07 kN. Specific impulse 9000 seconds. Antonov cargo aircraft swept wing. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 275,000 kg, 38.0 m length x 24.0 m wingspan, 900 kph at 9,500 m altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 270 m/s. More...
  • B-1A Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 159,637/81,587 kg. Thrust 302.40 kN. Specific impulse 1980 seconds. N. American Bomber-variable geometry. Maximum release conditions: Bomb bay mounted, 16,364 kg (9.4 m length x 2.5 m diameter x 2.5 m span) at 2,096 kph at 11,900 m altitude. More...
  • B-58 Mach 2 rocket carrier. Loaded/empty mass 72,563/25,197 kg. Thrust 183.23 kN. Specific impulse 2020 seconds. Convair Bomber-delta wing. Maximum release conditions: Belly mounted, 21,818 kg (22.5 m length x 1.9 m diameter x 7.1 m wingspan) at 2,130 kph at 12,195 m altitude (Kingfisher). More...
  • Buran M-42 Ramjet missile stage. Loaded/empty mass 53,000/15,000 kg. Thrust 103.90 kN. Specific impulse 1500 seconds. Boosted by 4 x Glushko-engined boosters. 8,500 km cruise at Mach 3.1 at 18-20 km altitude with 3,500 kg warhead. Wing area 98 square meters; diameter of ramjet 2.0 m. Never reached flight test. Masses estimated based on missile known total mass. More...
  • Burya Ramjet missile stage. Loaded/empty mass 40,865/13,000 kg. Thrust 76.00 kN. Specific impulse 1500 seconds. Boosted by 2 x R-11 derivative boosters. 6,500 km tested, 8,000 km specified, cruise at Mach 3.2 at 18-20 km altitude with 2,350 kg warhead. Flight tested 1957 - 1960. Wing area 60 square meters; diameter of ramjet inlet 1.7 m. Total missile mass 97,215 kg; gross masses prorated, empty masses estimated. More...
  • EKR Stage 2 Ramjet test vehicle stage. Loaded/empty mass 1,484/1,167 kg. Thrust 6.13 kN. Specific impulse 1580 seconds. Second stage for Eksperimentalnaya krilataya raketa (experimental winged rocket), Mach 3 ramjet. Range 730 km with flight time of 927 seconds. Lift to drag 2.51, wing area 3.31 square meters. Not developed but formed basis for Burya and Buran missiles. More...
  • F-106 Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 15,173/10,901 kg. Thrust 71.60 kN. Specific impulse 1800 seconds. Convair Interceptor-delta wing. Maximum release conditions: Weapons bay mounted, 1,957 kg at 2,141 kph at 16,067 m altitude More...
  • F-15 Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 16,921/11,833 kg. Thrust 127.72 kN. Specific impulse 1552 seconds. McDonnell Interceptor-cropped delta. Maximum release conditions: 545 kg (2.0 m length x 0.5 m wingspan) at 2,580 kph at 11,582 m altitude (ASAT). More...
  • F-4 Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 22,517/13,394 kg. Thrust 105.58 kN. Specific impulse 2020 seconds. McDonnell Fighter-cropped delta. Maximum release conditions: 5,442 kg at 2,353 kph at 17,820 m altitude More...
  • F-6 Turbojet powered rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 8,163/6,870 kg. Thrust 45.36 kN. Specific impulse 1414 seconds. Douglas (Heinemann) designed fighter-delta wing. Used as zero stage for Caleb miniature satellite launcher. Maximum release conditions: 3,628 kg at 1,166 kph at 16,768 m altitude More...
  • F-6A Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 10,474/6,869 kg. Thrust 71.14 kN. Specific impulse 2770 seconds. Navy fighter used to launch Caleb air-launched rocket. Launch conditions 3,000 lbs at 40,000 feet at 480 mph at 56 degree angle. More...
  • Gerakl Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded mass 900,000 kg. NPO Molniya-1000 cargo aircraft, catamaran layout, twin-fuselage triplane. Release conditions: Suspended load, 450,000 kg, 900 kph at 9,500 m altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 270 m/s. More...
  • Kholod Turbo-ramjet powered rocket launch aircraft. Loaded mass 550,000 kg. Mikoyan supersonic cargo aircraft, designed from Sprial 50-50 design. Combined-cycle turbo-ramjet engine. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 200,000 kg, Mach 5 at 25 to 30 km altitude. Effective velocity gain compared to vertical launch 1130 m/s. More...
  • L-1011 Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 156,000/109,629 kg. Thrust 561.90 kN. Specific impulse 9900 seconds. Lockheed airliner swept wing. Release conditions: Belly-mounted, 36,800 kg, 17.1 m length x 7.9 m span at 925 kph at 11,890 m altitude More...
  • MiG-25 Mach 3 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 32,136/19,995 kg. Thrust 182.34 kN. Specific impulse 2073 seconds. Mikoyan Interceptor-cropped delta. Maximum release conditions: Wing mounted, 750 kg (6.3 m length x 2.2 m wingspan) at 3,161 kph at 24,000 m altitude More...
  • Mirage 4A Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 26,213/14,494 kg. Thrust 96.05 kN. Specific impulse 2020 seconds. Dassault Bomber-delta wing. Maximum release conditions: Belly mounted, 7,256 kg at 2,345 kph at 20,000 m altitude More...
  • NASA 747 Turbofan-powered rocket stage carrier aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 276,364/177,000 kg. Thrust 835.23 kN. Specific impulse 10939 seconds. Boeing swept wing airliner, modified to carry shuttle on its back. Also considered as launch aircraft for Manned Sortie Vehicle and air-launched Minuteman and Peacekeeper. Release conditions: Piggy-back, 109,000 kg payload, 37.2 m length x 24.0 m span at 538 kph at 5183 m. More...
  • Navaho G-26 Mach 3 ramjet test vehicle. Loaded/empty mass 29,478/9,977 kg. Thrust 66.70 kN. Specific impulse 1200 seconds. Separates from booster at 14,600 m, Mach 3. Mach 2.75 cruise, 5,600 km range, payload 2500 kg in 2.59 m x 1.50 m compartment. More...
  • Navaho G-38 Ramjet-powered missile stage. Loaded/empty mass 54,648/14,512 kg. Thrust 89.26 kN. Specific impulse 1200 seconds. Separates from booster at 21,600 m, Mach 3. Mach 3.25 cruise, 10,200 km range, payload 4545 kg in 3.76 m x 1.78 m weapons bay. Empty mass estimated. More...
  • Navaho X-10 Air/Kerosene propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 19,183/11,700 kg. Thrust 96.95 kN. Specific impulse 1800 seconds. Aerodynamic test vehicle for Navaho missile; Max speed Mach 2.08; range 1320 km. More...
  • NB-52 Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 177,273/70,545 kg. Thrust 430.47 kN. Specific impulse 5142 seconds. Boeing Bomber-swept wing. Maximum release conditions: Wing mounted, 25,000 kg (19.1 m length x 6.7 m span) at 880 kph at 11,448 m altitude More...
  • SR-71/M-12 Jet-powered rocket carrier vehicle. Loaded/empty mass 66,122/27,210 kg. Specific impulse 2084 seconds. Lockheed Reconaissance-delta wing. Maximum release conditions: Piggy-back, 9,091 kg (12.1 m length x 5.2 m span) at 3,300 kph at 24,390 m (D-21). More...
  • T-4 Mach 3 rocket carrier. Loaded/empty mass 114,400/55,600 kg. Thrust 633.50 kN. Specific impulse 1980 seconds. Sukhoi experimental interceptor - delta wing with forward canards. A modification to be used as first stage in Sukhoi proposal for Spiral manned spaceplane project. Maximum release conditions: 25,000 kg at 3,000 kph at 20,000 m altitude More...
  • Tu-121 Turbojet powered cruise missile stage. Loaded/empty mass 23,200/7,200 kg. Thrust 98.00 kN. KR-15-300 engine by OKB-300 (now MZ Soyuz), rated for 15 hour endurance. More...
  • Tu-160 Mach 2 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 205,442/99,773 kg. Thrust 533.67 kN. Specific impulse 1980 seconds. Tupolev Bomber-variable geometry. Maximum release conditions: Belly-mounted, 9,977 kg at 2,451 kph at 18,292 m altitude More...
  • White Knight Subsonic rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 4,100/1,200 kg. Thrust 34.30 kN. Specific impulse 2000 seconds. Carries SpaceShipOne to release point 65 km from Mohave Airport base, then releases it at 15 km altitude at 215 kph. Wing area 43.5 sq m. More...
  • XB-70 Mach 3 rocket launch aircraft. Loaded/empty mass 226,758/68,027 kg. Thrust 520.32 kN. Specific impulse 2084 seconds. N. American Bomber-delta wing. Maximum release conditions: Piggy-back, 27,273 kg (19.1 m length x 6.7 m span) at 3,193 kph at 21,341 m altitude More...

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