Pulsar Fusion, a UK rocket company that has seen its advanced space engines tested earlier this year, has been awarded funding from the UK Space Agency to develop integrated nuclear fission-based power systems for electric propulsion.

The project will be supported by Southampton and Cambridge Universities and Nuclear AMRC.

Pulsar Fusion, based in Bletchley, Buckinghamshire, has its sights set on ultimately harnessing nuclear fusion for hyper-speed rocket technology.

Advanced space rocket engines

Pulsar however currently manufactures several types of advanced space rocket engines that are in use today.

Among its creations is the largest and most powerful electric spacecraft engine in Europe which has been independently tested by the University of Southampton under another government funded scheme in 2021.

Nuclear fusion propulsion

Dr James Lambert, head of operations, said: “Pulsar has built and tested the most powerful electric propulsion engines in Europe.

“Combining this part of our propulsion portfolio with nuclear fission reactor technology is perfectly suited to the company’s skillsets and I am delighted that this has been recognised by the UKSA.

“The project will help us to build relationships and gather important data that will contribute towards our longer-term ambitions for nuclear fusion propulsion.”
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