Engineers at NASA's Stennis Space Center conducted an initial test of the J-2X engine powerpack Feb. 15, kicking off a series of key tests in development of the rocket engine that will carry humans deeper into space than ever before.
This test is the first of about a dozen various powerpack tests that will be conducted throughout the year at Stennis. The initial test was designed to ensure powerpack and facility control systems are functioning properly. It also marked the first step in establishing start sequencing for tests and was the first time cryogenic fuels were introduced into the powerpack to ensure the integrity of the facility and the test article in preparation for full power, longer duration testing.
The powerpack is a system of components on the top portion of the J-2X engine, including the gas generator, oxygen and fuel turbopumps, and related ducts and valves. On the full J-2X engine, the powerpack system feeds the thrust chamber system which produces engine thrust.