« BACK  

Skylon testing success for Fine Tubes and Reaction Engines

Fine Tubes technology continues to support developments in aerospace with its lightweight tubing used in the heat exchange system of Skylon's SABRE engine
Fine Tubes technology continues to support developments in aerospace with its lightweight tubing used in the heat exchange system of Skylon's SABRE engine

Fine Tubes a leading metal tubes manufacturer specialising in the aerospace, medical, chemical process, nuclear, power and oil and gas sectors has cause to celebrate as a 10 year project sees results.

After a decade of work with Reaction Engines - developers of Skylon, one of the world's first reusable space planes - Fine Tubes can announce that testing of its contribution has been a success.

The company manufactured over 2000km of tubing for Skylon, with each tube at a wall thickness of just half the diameter of a human hair. Reaction Engines' objective is so challenging that a lot of goals had to be met; the tubes had to be lightweight, highly heat and pressure resistant, and have a strength that could cope with thermal expansions. The resulting heat exchangers are 100 times lighter than existing technologies and enable the cooling of airstreams from over 1000°C to -150°C in less than 1/100th of a second.

Dr Robert Bond, Corporate Programmes Director of Reaction Engines commented: "No one else has managed to create heat exchangers like this before, due in part to the fact that the specifications for the components are very demanding. There are a few other companies which can produce the kind of high tech tube we need but the Fine Tubes product is extremely high quality, meeting all the project specifications and we are very pleased with its performance."

Fine Tubes used Inconel, a nickel alloy that has excellent heat resistance. Because of the amount of tubing required, it had to be as lightweight as possible. Inconel is a difficult material to shape and the thinness required meant it was easily damaged, so to fulfil Reaction Engines' requirements Fine Tubes installed completely new equipment for the tube cleaning process at its tube mill. Now, testing of the heat exchange system for SABRE - Skylon's Hybrid Engine - has proved 10 years of work a worthy cause for Fine Tubes. The testers confirmed that all demonstration objectives were met for the SABRE engine's pre-cooler heat exchanger, and found the cooling technology to be frost-free at the crucial low temperature of -150°C.

Dr Mark Ford, ESA's Head of Propulsion Engineering, said: "One of the major obstacles to developing air-breathing engines for launch vehicles is the development of lightweight high-performance heat exchangers. With this now successfully demonstrated by Reaction Engines Ltd, there are currently no technical reasons why the SABRE engine programme cannot move forward into the next stage of development."

As soon as Reaction Engines hits its next funding goal, work will continue towards the next phase of testing in building the prototype of a fully functioning engine.

Ronen Day, Managing Director of Fine Tubes said: "Developing a lightweight heat exchange system was one of the major issues standing in the way of the space plane's development. With Fine Tubes’ contribution now proven by successful testing, Skylon is set to be a major breakthrough in the aerospace sector."

After this testing success, the technologies involved in Skylon's SABRE engine are now being applied to other projects, for example the second phase of the LAPCAT (Long-term Advanced Propulsion Concepts and Technologies) project. The study intends to investigate further technological developments that can reduce long distance flights to under four hours.

PUBLISHED: 20 Jun 13 Bookmark and Share
Company:
Fine Tubes Limited
Visit Fine Tubes Limiteds website
Country:
UK
Tel:
+44 1752 876416
Fax:
+44 1752 733301
Email:
sales.finetubes@ametek.com
Website:
www.finetubes.com
Other News from Fine Tubes Limited:

»
Fine Tubes gears up for the recovery of the oil and gas industry
»
New Nadcap accreditation for Fluid Distribution Systems is the fifth for Fine Tubes
»
Securing a fourth Nadcap accreditation confirms Fine Tubes' aerospace manufacturing excellence
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube target Indian oil and gas market with presence at Petrotech
»
Titanium tubing experts showcase latest light weight products at Aeromart
»
Aerospace tubing manufacturers exhibit latest alloys at AIRTEC
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube see growing demand from the global nuclear industry
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube continue to extend 
their industry-leading nuclear capabilities
»
NORSOK-approved tubing for oil and gas applications at ONS 2016
»
Fine Tubes granted F4N status by Nuclear AMRC
»
Fine Tubes & Superior Tube showcase Nuclear tubing 
capabilities at the World Nuclear Exhibition
»
Fine Tubes awarded 'approved manufacturer' status 
by Kuwait Oil Company
»
Fine Tubes (UK) & Superior Tube (USA) 
are awarded contracts by Airbus
»
Leading aerospace tubing experts exhibit at AIRTEC 2015
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube to co-exhibit with 
Hamilton Precision Metals at MD&M Minneapolis
»
Paris Air Show: high demand for titanium tubing generated by increasing global aircraft build rates
»
Fine Tubes appoints new Procurement Specialist
»
NORSOK Super Duplex approval opens global supply chain for Fine Tubes
»
As Kuwait invests to boost its oil output, Fine Tubes wins important approval as KNPC vendor
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube expand operations in the Far East with new distribution partner in Japan
»
Fine Tubes and Superior Tube to exhibit at Topsides, Platforms & Hulls 2015
»
Q&A interview with Charles Ferreira, Nuclear Products Division
»
Fine Tubes - suppliers of 'fit and forget' tubing for the offshore industry
»
Growing demand for our high pressure tubing
»
Fine Tubes appoints new HR Business Partner
»
Fine Tubes to exhibit its industry-leading aerospace products at AIRTEC 2014
»
Fine Tubes demonstrates its industry-leading capabilities at World Nuclear Exhibition
»
Fine Tubes partners with City College Plymouth to provide Moving and Handling Training
»
Fine Tubes appoints new Procurement Specialist
»
Fine Tubes' latest financial results reflect strategy for planned growth in aerospace and energy markets
»
Fine Tubes chosen by FMC Technologies to supply advanced tubing for Total's Egina project
»
Fine Tubes receives additional NORSOK approval by Parker Hannifin and Statoil
»
Fine Tubes to supply precision tubing for Solar Orbiter
»
Fine Tubes appoints new agent in Kuwait as part of Middle East strategic plan
»
Fine Tubes appoints Phil Adderley as Technical and Quality Director
»
Fine Tubes relocates its Indian office 
to accommodate growing customer base
»
Fine Tubes turns to City College Plymouth to develop Management Training programme
»
Fine Tubes develops seamless titanium tubing for Airbus and Liebherr
»
Fine Tubes appoints Adrian Salle to new Sales Manager role
»
Fine Tubes lands in Frankfurt to showcase aerospace products at AIRTEC
»
Fine Tubes generates interest at Nuklea with its POWER products
»
Fine Tubes wins contract to supply hydraulic tubing for new generation of Snecma engines
»
Fine Tubes to showcase titanium tubing innovations at AIRTEC in Germany
»
Fine Tubes welcomes Graham Maxa as new Finance Director
»
From aero to space - adapting aerospace technology to meet outer space demands
»
Fine Tubes showcase high precision power tubes in France
»
Fine Tubes appoints Director of Engineering and Technology
»
Fine Tubes helps North Sea oil platforms meet demanding standards with super-resistant alloys
»
Fine Tubes opens new facility in Houston to be headed up by newly appointed Oil & Gas Business Development Manager
»
Fine Tubes helps SENER achieve results in solar power with the Gemasolar power plant
»
High demand for Fine Tubes short lead times for seamless titanium tubing at 50th Paris Air Show
»
Saudi Aramco approval for Fine Tubes
»
As Fine Tubes approaches its 70th anniversary demand continues to rise for their products and services
»
New product development keeps Fine Tubes at the forefront of metals innovation
»
Skylon testing success for Fine Tubes and Reaction Engines
»
Fine Tubes expands its client base in Russian and Ukrainian aerospace markets
»
Specialist alloy tubing tackle corrosion in topside and subsea applications
»
CERN discovers 'God' particle - Fine Tubes supplied vital cooling tubes
»
Focusing on boosting customer service


Industry News:
Professional O-ring tool kit
First aid for technicians: Professional O-ring tool kit
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Construction site Weld Purge Monitor®
Construction site Weld Purge Monitor®
Huntingdon Fusion Techniques Limited, UK
Metalube is making a big investment into the Düsseldorf show this year with the addition of the new stand at Tube 2018
Two stands for Metalube in Düsseldorf
Metalube Ltd, UK
COG Resist® - The new high-tech FFKM compounds from COG
COG Resist® - The new high-tech FFKM compounds from COG
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Ajax TOCCO sells new EMMEDI MosWeld SiC HFI Welder on display at Fabtech - Chicago
Ajax TOCCO sells new EMMEDI MosWeld SiC HFI Welder
Ajax Tocco Magnethermic Corporation, USA
Two special flat models with one standard flat model
Zero colour oxide free welds for manual welders
Huntingdon Fusion Techniques Limited, UK
A new high-tech compound for the valves sector and gas industry
FKM seal material Vi 840 - A breakthrough in the valves sector and gas industry
Firma C Otto Gehrckens GmbH & Co KG (COG), Germany
Un-brazing and re-brazing copper angle brackets to copper strips at 1400°F (760°C) in less than a minute using UltraFlex Induction Heating
Un-brazing and re-brazing copper angle brackets to copper strips at 760°C in less than a minute
Ultraflex Power Technologies, USA
Fine Tubes gears up for the recovery of the oil and gas industry
Fine Tubes gears up for the recovery of the oil and gas industry
Fine Tubes Limited, UK
SigmaTEK Systems reported a record-breaking Fabtech Expo
Manufacturing is Looking Good for 2018
SigmaTEK Systems, LLC, USA
» VIEW ALL NEWS «