Reusable launch vehicles (RLV) currently envisioned incorporate a wide variety of propulsion types. Various propulsion devices have been designed, or are being designed. The Integral-Rocket-Ramjet (IRR) propulsion mainly applies to a tactical missile boost system and few have mentioned this system in RLV design. According to the technological ability of Taiwan and a feasibility study, it shows that the present reusable launch system can exploit the potential benefit of IRR propulsion for the RLV system. A conceptual study of an unmanned two-stage-to-orbit (TSTO) launch vehicle is designed in this paper. The first stage of the vehicle is reusable with IRR engines. The second stage is expendable and rocket powered. The assumed mission is designed to insert a 100kg payload into a low earth circular orbit at various inclination angles. The calculations are made for the case where the TSTO system is used in Taiwan. The fundamentals of launch vehicle design are examined using simplified two-stage performance equations. Launch vehicle design is optimized when the performance and programmatic drivers are balanced. There is an acceptable set of launch and landing sites on islands off the coast of Taiwan.
- Reusable launch vehicle