Huge solid rocket motor test firing
A big step for China’s solid rocket capabilities this week with the test firing of a 3.5 meters diameter solid rocket engine producing a maximum thrust of 500 tonnes.
“Testing is very successful. We have tested all the parameters including the 500-ton thrust that worked 115 seconds… Next, we will develop a 1,000-ton solid rocket engine to provide stronger thrust for China’s carrier rockets in the future,”“ said Ren Quanbin, president of Academy of Aerospace Solid Propulsion Technology (AASPT) under CASC.
These solid engines are stated to be for use for crewed lunar and deep space missions. These could be seen as comparable to the solid boosters for SLS, yet China’s Long March 9 rocket, expected to debut around 2028-2030, currently does not hold solid boosters as part of the plan. It does however provide another option, as well as high-thrust capabilities that can be handed off to China Rocket Co. Ltd., a commercial spinoff from CASC’s main launch vehicle maker and developer of Jielong solid rockets. A recently developed 2.6 diameter solid motor will power the Jielong-3, which could launch in February-March 2022.