Hybrid missile

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SpaceShipOne propulsion scheme

Hybrid rockets use a rocket engine to generate thrust , in which solid fuel is combined with a liquid oxidizer. The advantages of hybrid missiles are their simpler construction and their inherent security. They therefore often represented a development step towards the liquid rocket (e.g. Soviet Union 1933 GIRD-09 ). So far, only small to medium-sized hybrid missiles have been built, but orbital missiles are now also planned.


When using certain propellants (e.g. lithium hydride , beryllium hydride ) and oxidizers (e.g. oxygen , fluorine , FLOX , oxygen difluoride ), hybrid missiles can achieve or exceed specific impulses like the most powerful liquid missiles in use .

Research on hybrid missiles has been going on in Germany since the 1960s ( Barbarella ). Research in France ( LEX ) and in the USA ( Amroc , Dolphin , Hyperion , HYSR , SpaceShipOne ) also resulted in airworthy experimental rockets .

In 1974 Barbarella, the first German hybrid missile, was launched. Today it can be viewed in the Deutsches Museum in Munich . Some model rocket clubs, such as DERA, have already built hybrid rockets and launched them successfully. The SpaceShipOne's first private manned spaceflight in 2003 was also powered by a hybrid rocket engine.

Basic form

Similar to solid rockets , the combustion chamber consists of a cylindrical container and represents the storage container for the solid component of the fuel. The liquid oxidizer flows through a tube through the solid fuel and can thus react with it.

Special forms

Since the surface of the solid fuel normally increases during operation, the liquid fuel component has to be injected into a special afterburning chamber for better combustion of the solid fuel. It is also possible to spray the liquid component via an axial spray tube in front of the nozzle neck.

Web links

Commons : Hybrid rockets  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Bernd Leitenberger: Hybrid rocket drives
  2. a b Bibliographisches Institut Mannheim 1971: How does it work?