Alphaport Completes Development of Integrated Exciter-Igniter for Rocket and Jet Engine Propulsion

Jan 21, 2010, 14:10 ET from Alphaport

CLEVELAND, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Alphaport®, a Cleveland, Ohio-based provider of advanced engineering services and applied technology, recently completed development of an integrated Exciter-Igniter ignition system for rocket and jet engine propulsion. The integrated and innovative Exciter-Igniter uniquely packages both the exciter electronics and the ignition coil inside a single, hermetically sealed stainless steel enclosure that produces reliable, high-voltage sparking needed for ignition of LOx methane or other green fuels. The unit offers a significant advantage over current ignition systems, which have the exciter electronics separated from the igniter by a cable as long as four feet.

Alphaport's rocket ignition system provides spark voltages of up to 20kV and controlled energies up to 50mj. The spark rate is fixed, and can be set within the range of 200–300Hz. A miniaturized, custom-designed ignition coil is housed within the enclosure and directly interfaces to the igniter. The unit was successfully hot-fire tested at Alphaport facilities using an air-methane fuel mixture. In addition, the unit was tested in a vacuum chamber, and was successfully verified to maintain internal atmospheric pressure while being exposed to a vacuum. 

The Exciter-Igniter system was designed, built, and tested under a two-year NASA SBIR Phase II program, a follow-on to the Phase I design effort. The unit was constructed to NASA-supplied specifications, which are based on potential flight performance requirements for space operation. 

Alphaport is currently near completion of a second prototype Exciter-Igniter, which is available for testing in the growing commercial space market. In addition, Alphaport is developing a more compact board arrangement in a smaller and lighter weight housing. Patents are pending on these innovative technologies.

For questions or to receive an Exciter-Igniter data sheet, please contact John Heese (Project Manager) at 216-920-0572 or Mike Aulisio (Principal Investigator) at 216-619-2400.

About Alphaport

Alphaport provides a full spectrum of advanced engineering services, space exploration technologies, and product development programs for the aerospace industry. Alphaport is actively engaged in development and testing of commercial space technologies and is pursuing additional opportunities in this market.

Alphaport has a rapidly growing team of experienced research scientists, engineers and project managers focused on applying their knowledge to the development of innovative technologies. The company provides technical expertise for commercial space systems, aerospace and government organizations with specialization in power propulsion, communications and emerging space technologies.

Other areas of expertise include comprehensive knowledge management training programs that help organizations capture and retain knowledge, and then apply intellectual property for technology innovation or workforce development.

Alphaport has received multiple business and technology awards, including the Inc. 500 Award for America's fastest growing private companies.

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Alphaport's innovative rocket ignition system ignites air-methane gas for green fuel propulsion.

SOURCE Alphaport