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CNES Eyes Biomass to Fuel Future Ariane Launchers

25 Oct 2020, 15:40 UTC
CNES Eyes Biomass to Fuel Future Ariane Launchers
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Biomethane installation (Credit: Naskeo Environnement)

The idea of ​​using biomethane to propel future generations of Ariane is gaining ground. This innovative technological solution would have great economic and environmental interest and many positive repercussions in Guyana.

PARIS (CNES PR) — The future Ariane Next launcher , which could take over from Ariane 6 by 2030 or 2035, will have to be more economical to meet market needs. One of the avenues to achieve this could be to use liquid methane rather than hydrogen to power the engines.

“The matter is not yet 100% decided, but we are looking with interest at the combination of oxygen and methane. This is why we are looking for the best methane production channel from an economic as well as an environmental standpoint,” said Pascal Noir, project manager at the Launchers Department.

The exploitation of methane produced in Guyana from local biomass appears to be the most virtuous solution to meet the two previous objectives.

Pascal Noir (Credit: CNES)

“We favor anaerobic digestion, which is an industrially controlled process that therefore does not require fundamental research. It consists in producing biogas, which will then be liquefied and purified to be used as propellant for ...

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