Reaction Engines

Company information

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Founded in 1989, Reaction Engines is an aerospace manufacturer currently developing a revolutionary air-breathing rocket engine – SABRE™ (Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine). The company employs over 200 staff predominantly in the UK, but also has an office and a testing facility in the US.

“We aim to be twice as fast as the fastest jet engine and more efficient than the most efficient rocket engines. SABRE™ enables hypersonic flight over five times the speed of sound,” explains Mark Thomas, Chief Executive of Reaction Engines. “With its wide range of operations and scalability, SABRE™ will allow the development of the next generation of truly reusable space launch vehicles, along with hypersonic aircraft, and represents a defining moment in powered flight.”

Reaction Engines offers a range of capabilities, from propulsion systems and advanced heat exchanger design and development, through to advanced manufacturing and precision machining. “Our heat exchanger technology has the potential to revolutionise what can be achieved with thermal management across a range of industries, from aerospace to motorsport, industrial processes and the energy industry,” says Mark.

“Reaction Engines has benefited from a partnership model where targeted government support has matched significant private sector investment. Public funding has been critical, too, with commitments from the UK Space Agency, the European Space Agency and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency in the US. This has accelerated the company from the research phase to the design, development and testing of the SABRE™ engine,” he says.

With the space flight sector going through a transformational era, there are very significant opportunities opening up and new players emerging. “The UK Government estimates that the global space market will be worth £400bn by 2030,” says Mark, looking forward to the challenges ahead.