Encyclopedia Astronautica

Lox/LH2 propellant rocket stage. Loaded/empty mass 16,700/2,700 kg. Thrust 121.50 kN. Vacuum specific impulse 452 seconds.

Cost $ : 30.000 million.

Status: Retired 1999.
Gross mass: 16,700 kg (36,800 lb).
Unfuelled mass: 2,700 kg (5,900 lb).
Height: 10.60 m (34.70 ft).
Diameter: 4.00 m (13.10 ft).
Span: 4.00 m (13.10 ft).
Thrust: 121.50 kN (27,314 lbf).
Specific impulse: 452 s.
Burn time: 600 s.
Number: 12 .

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Associated Countries
Associated Engines
  • LE-5A Mitsubishi lox/lh2 rocket engine. 121.5 kN. Isp=452s. Used on H-2 launch vehicle. First flight 1994. More...

Associated Launch Vehicles
  • H-II Japanese orbital launch vehicle. 3 stage vehicle consisted of 2 x H-II SRB boosters + core vehicle. More...
  • H-II (2S) Japanese orbital launch vehicle. Three stage version consisting of 2 x H-II SSB boosters + 2 x H-II SRB boosters + core vehicle. More...

Associated Propellants
  • Lox/LH2 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. Liquid hydrogen was identified by all the leading rocket visionaries as the theoretically ideal rocket fuel. It had big drawbacks, however - it was highly cryogenic, and it had a very low density, making for large tanks. The United States mastered hydrogen technology for the highly classified Lockheed CL-400 Suntan reconnaissance aircraft in the mid-1950's. The technology was transferred to the Centaur rocket stage program, and by the mid-1960's the United States was flying the Centaur and Saturn upper stages using the fuel. It was adopted for the core of the space shuttle, and Centaur stages still fly today. More...

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