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Cow Power Rocket Marks Successful Test in Hokkaido

The rocket is fueled by biomethane, or "cow power," which is produced by converting methane in cow manure and urine into usable energy.



Rocket engine combustion test using liquefied biomethane extracted from cow dung in Taiki, Hokkaido, conducted on December 7. (Provided by Interstellar Technologies)

The space venture company Interstellar Technologies (IST) tested the combustion of a rocket engine running on liquefied biomethane made from cow dung. The media were invited to witness the test on December 7 at a site in Taiki, southeastern Hokkaido. According to IST, the combustion test was the first of its kind by a private company.

Upon igniting the engine's combustor, red flames spewed out vigorously, burning for approximately 10 seconds. Following the successful test, President Takahiro Inagawa expressed his satisfaction, stating, "It is a true joy and relief that the test was completed successfully. This marks a major milestone toward rocket launch."

Looking ahead, IST plans to conduct detailed examinations of the engine's combustion performance.

The dairy farm that supplied the cow manure and urine in Taiki, Hokkaido, December 6. (©Kyodo)

The company that provided the liquefied biomethane was Air Water Inc., a prominent industrial gas supplier. The biomethane was produced through processes involving the fermentation of cow dung and urine sourced from a local dairy farm in Taiki. IST believes that its project could play a role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, as methane released from cow dung contributes to global warming.

President Takahiro Inagawa of Interstellar Technologies watches a live feed of the engine combustion test on a screen. (©Kyodo)


(Read the article in Japanese.)

Author: The Sankei Shimbun

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