Low NOx combustors target of new NASA funding

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NASA intends to invest $14 million in a new 50/50 cost-share programme with industry to identify and test jet engine combustion concepts that could reduce nitrous oxide (NOx) emissions as much as 50% below today's CAEP/6 levels in the 2020 timeframe.

In addition to new combustor concepts capable of meeting the 2020 NOx goals, the proposal requests that potential vendors supply initial screening experiments, develop technology roadmaps and construct a test rig "capable of testing advanced combustors at realistic engine conditions" for NASA use.

The combustion research effort, announced 21 July, will join a variety of other already-announced aeronautics and space research areas for which NASA plans to use its $1 billion portion of the US government's $787 billion economic stimulus package.

Included in the $1 billion portfolio are $400 million for Earth science climate research missions, $400 million for space exploration and $150 million for aeronautics, with an emphasis on systems-level research development and demonstration activities for the next generation air transportation system and environmental impact mitigation.