Hypersonix Launch Systems Ltd. and Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. have signed an agreement to launch the DART AE multi-mission hypersonic drone technology demonstrator. In their Hypersonix Kratos Team’s submission to the DISER Modern Manufacturing Initiative (MMI) Grants Program 2, the Team is planning for a launch and initial demonstration flight of the DART AE Hypersonic Drone System in 2023.
The Hypersonix DART AE, a multi-mission, hypersonic drone, will be fully 3D-printed out of high-temperature materials and powered by a single, fifth-generation SPARTAN, zero emission, clean hydrogen scramjet engine with a publicly disclosable range of 500km.
Kratos brings to the team its extensive digital engineering capabilities and sounding rocket booster integration and launch experience. The Kratos booster system will accelerate the DART AE drone to a speed greater than Mach 5 and release the vehicle; ignition of the Drone scramjet engine will occur, and autonomous flight of DART AE will proceed along a programmed flight path to a predetermined landing location.
Hypersonix Launch Systems is an Australian Aerospace Engineering company, specialising in the design and build of scramjet engines and hypersonic vehicles. Its SPARTAN scramjet engine is hydrogen-fuelled and designed to operate between Mach 5 and 12 in support of multiple missions. Hypersonix is developing several hypersonic vehicles that fly at hypersonic speeds between Mach 5 and Mach 12 with zero CO2 emissions, only water vapor, and have applications in both satellite launch and high-speed aviation.
Kratos is a leading provider of innovative products and solutions supporting ballistic missile targets, hypersonic systems, sub-orbital research, sounding rockets, unmanned drone systems, turbine technologies, directed energy and laser program systems. Kratos has significant experience in launching Australian hypersonic experiments in collaboration with DST Group, investigating the fundamental science of hypersonic technology and its potential for next generation aeronautical propulsion systems for technical, commercial and security purposes.
“Kratos is excited to team up with Hypersonix on this innovative project and we look forward to supporting their development and the integration and flight of this truly disruptive and enabling Australian technology” said David Carter, President of Kratos’ Defense Rocket & Support Services Division. “DART AE is an ideal opportunity for Kratos to further showcase our extensive hypersonic launch system capability.”
“Kratos is an experienced launch provider who has a proven track record of launching payloads around the world,” says David Waterhouse, Hypersonix Managing Director. “They understand hypersonic technology and flight and are ready to support us with the first launch of our transformative technology that will be faster, more sustainable, and more efficient than current technology.”