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Driving advances in air-breathing technology for aerospace vehicles, and performing research and developing technology for spacecraft propulsion systems and stages, and cryogenic fluid flight systems.


Aeropropulsion is focused on advancing air-breathing propulsion technology for aerospace vehicles and addressing high-speed propulsion technology barriers.

We’re working on revolutionary concepts and new systems aimed at improving energy efficiency, and safety of operations, while minimizing environmental impact such as emissions and noise.

For more information about our research in aeropropulsion, contact Dr. D.R. Reddy.

Environmental Effects

NASA Glenn Research Center is performing research to address the environmental effects of acoustics, icing, emissions, and sustainable aviation fuel usage for aircraft of all types and sizes.

Aircraft Noise

We are performing experimental and analytical research and developing diagnostic tools to predict noise and analyze propulsion systems. We are looking for ways to reduce community noise caused by subsonic, supersonic, and advanced air mobility vehicles, which can be barriers to emerging aviation markets.

For more information about our research in reducing aircraft noise, contact John Lucero.

Aircraft Icing

Aircraft icing research is critical to aircraft safety. We develop validated computational and experimental simulation methods, and we use these methods as certification and design tools, to evaluate aircraft systems for operation in icing conditions, and icing effects on aircraft in flight. We conduct flight research to understand the atmospheric conditions leading to icing and enable development of on-board detection systems for avoiding certain icing conditions.

For more information about our research in aircraft icing, contact Peter Struk


Gaseous and particulate emissions can impact human health and climate change. We are working to understand and quantify the impacts of sustainable aviation fuels on combustor operability and emissions for subsonic and supersonic aircraft. We perform experimental and analytical research to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides and particulates.

For more information about our research in emissions, contact Jeff Moder

In-Situ Resource Utilization

To achieve sustainable space exploration, we must take a lesson from our explorer ancestors by breaking the supply chain from Earth and learning to live off the land.

In-situ resource utilization (ISRU), or the ability to make useful products from the resources available at the exploration site, is a key component of this sustainability goal. One example of ISRU is generating propellants near the lunar south pole by extracting oxygen from the minerals in the granular lunar regolith or from water-ice in the permanently shadowed regions (PSR).

Having the capability to locally source the oxidizer to refuel a regularly scheduled landing vehicle helps to break the supply chain from Earth and move towards sustainability

For more information about our research on ISRU, contact Marc Abadie.

Propellant and Cryogenic Fluid Management Systems

Propellant Management systems are a sub-set of the chosen propulsion system (for example; chemical, electrical, nuclear thermal) and can be classified as either storable, cryogenic or gaseous propellant systems.

The propellant management system conditions and controls the propellant and delivers it to the propulsion system to meet flight requirements. We provide propellant systems research in the areas of engineering design, numerical modeling, testing, and technology development.

Glenn Research Center provides the insight and oversight to the prime contractors supporting NASA’s missions related to in-space transportation.

For more information about our research in propellant and cryogenic fluid management systems, contact Robert Buehrle.

Space Propulsion

We focus on research and technology for flight demonstration components and systems for spacecraft propulsion systems, propulsion stages, and cryogenic fluid flight systems. Our research and technology development enables new space exploration capabilities as well as increased reliability, safety, and affordability.

To learn more about our research in space propulsion, contact Dr. D.R. Reddy.

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