How to build a 3D-printed rocket engine – with a few tricks

Geodesic domes are just a couple of the latest creations to hit the headlines for their promise of dramatically improving rocket engine performance.

However, this is just one of the many exciting ideas to hit our screens in the coming months.

Geodesic dome technology uses a thin layer of titanium or graphite to insulate the core of a rocket engine from any outside temperature changes.

In a process called supercooling, this titanium layer cools as the rocket engine cools.

The result is a huge increase in fuel efficiency – from a mere 0.2 to 2.5% over traditional engines.

The process is also significantly cheaper than using expensive, bulky tanks of compressed air.

In addition, geodesic technology makes it easier for engineers to design and build complex engines.

Geodeic domed engines can be built from the ground up to achieve a 1,000lb thrust and reach temperatures of up to 7500°C.

These high temperatures are possible thanks to the use of special geodesics made from titanium dioxide and graphite.

In the case of a single engine, a single dome can be made from a single tube, rather than a cylinder, which has to be cooled down to temperatures of over 600°C in order to achieve combustion.

Geodeces are also known for being relatively cheap to produce, but the process can be a bit tricky.

For example, it can take months to design, assemble and test a single geodesical dome, and the parts must be shipped from China.

For the next few months, we’ll be looking at some of the more practical applications of geodesicism, from rocket engines to autonomous robots to medical imaging.

This is the second in a series of articles looking at the latest technology from our team.

To read more about this and other news, click here.

This article originally appeared on TechRadars.

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