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Epsilon Vee progress to date.

Posted by: JamesC. - Fri Aug 01, 2008 3:07 pm
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Epsilon Vee progress to date. 
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Post Epsilon Vee progress to date.   Posted on: Fri Aug 01, 2008 3:07 pm
Rob has asked if I can provide an update on Epsilon Vee's N-Prize project.

More than happy to, here you are. Please, feel free to comment.

Epsilon Vee N-Prize Booster Design Update:


I’ve worked in manufacturing at assembly, QA, engineering, and management for the last decade. From this experience comes my mantra ‘industrial grade – NOT white room grade’. I’m pushing to create a booster that can be built using common materials (tanks made from extruded pipe instead of rolled and machined plate) and simple assembly techniques (bolt parts together instead of welding). Welding and machining won’t go away entirely I’m sure, but even incremental changes in methods can add up to significant savings later.


I have the basic stage 1 and 2 engine dimensions complete, so now I can start planning how to fabricate one (actually, several). Part of my thinking on reducing costs is how to make fabrication simpler and easier. I’m looking at ablative chambers and nozzles using a home-brewed composite material, and a method of making them that I’ve not seen recorded. Not to say someone else hasn’t tried it before, and I may well find out why I’ve never seen it discussed. I also have to find somewhere to do static tests. I’m aiming for November to start testing prototypes. Upper stage engines are still in flux.


I have numbers for a flight grade injector, now I’m trying to find a way to make one with only parts from the local hardware store. I’m uncertain how this will turn out. For initial engine testing, I’ll be using ordinary spray nozzles and gaseous propellants to test and improve the chamber and nozzle design. Injector testing will run at the same time, starting with cold flow water, then actual hot flow propellants.

Then comes the fun part of integrating the engine and injector.


Stages 1 & 2: Extruded aluminum pipe. Since these are not as weight sensitive, I’m putting as much structural load into them as possible.

Upper stages: Very light composite laminate (home-brewed again). I’m actually hoping to get a weight ratio of near 20 for these.

So that’s where I am right now. Thanks for reading.

James Clem
Chief Engineer
Epsilon Vee

Veni Vidi Orbis

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Post    Posted on: Thu Sep 25, 2008 7:16 pm
James, how goes the progress?

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Post Re: Epsilon Vee progress to date.   Posted on: Thu Jul 22, 2010 10:05 pm
How are you doing so far? Do you think you'll be able to make the deadline?

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