Military Embedded Systems

Reusable hypersonic UAV in development with Hypersonix Launch Systems


March 29, 2022

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Hypersonix image.

AUSTRALIA. Aerospace engineering business Hypersonix Launch Systems together with the University of Southern Queensland, LSM Advanced Composites, and Romar Engineering have been awarded a $2.95 million Cooperative Research Centers Projects (CRC-P) grant from the Federal Government to develop a reusable hypersonic platform.

The project, titled DART CMP Airframe – a reusable hypersonic platform, is an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that can travel at hypersonic speeds up to Mach 12, according to the company. It is powered by the SPARTAN hydrogen fuelled scramjet engine.

Scramjets take oxygen from the atmosphere, which reduces weight by 60% compared to rockets. Officials claim that the development of new high-temperature composite materials in this project will allow DART CMP to be reusable. 

The project will deliver a new sovereign manufacturing capability for high-temperature oxide-oxide ceramic matrix composites. The deliverables include a complete UAV airframe, including composite aeroshell and aerodynamic control surfaces, flight avionics, and hydrogen fuel system.

Hypersonix Managing Director David Waterhouse said DART CMP is the composite version of the DART AE due for launch in 2023.