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This is the steam rocket engine I built for my rocket dragster, see the information on the "Space Age Racing" menu.


About the Steam Rockets

Many years ago, I read about Robert Truax, that in the 60´s built the Thunderbolt steam rocket engine which powered the Neptune I dragster of Art Arfons to break all the records of his time in the quarter mile at 260 mph, this car presented many control problems because the car chasiss was not well designed for this power and it wasn´t run any more, but the results of the steam rocket engine was obvious.


This is the Thunderbolt steam rocket engine built by Truax to power the " Neptune 1" dragster of Art Arfons, here in the test stand.



This is the Neptune 1 in a run, note the huge steam trail this rocket leaves , for the plane in the background this run was made in an airport.



The steam or hot water rocket is in most respects by far more suited to amateur experiments than any other.
It is not only the safest of any at all times, but prior to beginning of launching operations is absolutely safe.
The suitability of the hot water rocket lies in its ability to deliver astounding performance without the use of any dangerous chemicals. Moreover, the basic rocket is the essence of simplicity.
The hot water rocket makes use of the fact that water, if kept under pressure, can be heated far beyond its normal boiling temperature of 212 °F. For example in a container under 500 pounds per square inch pressure, water can be heated to some 475°F. If a hole is made in the container, the water will be forced out, a portion of it flashing into steam in escaping to the atmosphere.
Inside the container, the water will also boil, and the steam so created will replace the water forced out and will tend to maintain the pressure.
The escaping mixture of steam and water, if expanded through a suitable nozzle, will reach a velocity of about 1,500 feet per second. The reaction of this jet will drive a well built rocket to supersonic speed.

I was very lucky to meet Mr. Robert Truax, a true legend in the hystory of the modern rocketry.

This is the rocket I built for my car, you can see more pictures in the menu "rocket car" at the "Space Age Racing" page.





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