Space Team Aachen Hybrid Rocket


20 000 m
Dry Mass
45 kg
Payload Mass
4 kg
Average Thrust
4000 N



2024 in Esrange, Sweden


Develop and fly the first hybrid sounding rocket at RWTH Aachen University


FKZ: 50RL2151

The Space Team Aachen Hybrid Rocket, also called 'STAHR', is set to reach an apogee above 10 km. It is being designed and launched as part of the STERN (STudentische Experimental RaketeN) program of the German Aerospace Center (DLR), whose aim is to support student teams in the development of suborbital rockets. STAHR is set to launch in 2024 from Esrange, Sweden.
STAHR will be the first rocket of Space Team Aachen with a self-developed hybrid engine, which will be designed to reach an average thrust of 4kN. The rocket’s body will be manufactured out of carbon fiber using state-of-the-art winding, 3D printing techniques, and split mold manufacturing. The tank, necessary to store up to 30 kg of oxidizer at a pressure above 60 bar, will also be manufactured in-house out of CFRP, enclosing an aluminium liner. The rocket’s avionics, which monitor and gather its flight and engine data, are designed redundantly, using both student-developed and commercially available flight computers. The recovery system, which shall guarantee the rocket's safe return to the ground, will feature a dual parachute system consisting of a drogue and main chute. Unlike our previous rockets, the parachutes will not be bought but rather manufactured by students with support from our partner institutes of RWTH Aachen University.

We are supported by the DLR Stern program
Stern program

IF-1 Engine

4000 N
Paraffin/N2 O
Propellant Feed


IF-1 is our first custom-designed hybrid rocket engine. It will use liquid nitrous oxide and solid paraffin as propellants. The engine casing is made of CFRP, able to withstand the high combustion chamber pressure, while maintaining a low weight. A thermal protection liner will separate the fuel from the CFRP.
Throughout the development process, first, a subscale version was developed and tested, to be followed by tests of a full-scale version and finally a flight version.

STAHR Timeline

December 2021
Project Kick-Off - Stepping up to a new challenge

After competing successfully at rocketry competitions, the vision of a rocket with a self-developed engine rose within the Space Team Aachen. We decided to work towards a supersonic rocket using an in-house designed hybrid engine. With our concept, we got accepted for the DLR STERN Program, which provides us with funding and professional support throughout the project.

March 2022
Sub-scale demonstrator test campaign

In March of 2022, we started a test campaign with a downscaled version of the hybrid engine at our self-developed test bench, located at the Chair of High Pressure Gas Dynamics in Aachen. This was a huge milestone to verify our design and functionality of the engine, as well as the test bench. We gathered valuable information on the performance of our systems for further development.

October 2022
Preliminary Design Review

On the 12th of October, the Preliminary Design Review (PDR) was held at the DLR in Lampoldshausen, where the STAHR Team presented their current design of the rocket and its systems to a team of experts from the respective field. The review board evaluates all aspects of the rocket design and analyzes the systems for critical parts. The PDR is important for the progress of the project, since our design, planned manufacturing methods, and concepts are carefully reviewed. It also marks the transition to the next phase of the project: the development phase.
The feedback received from the review board at the PDR is carefully considered for ongoing development.

July 2023
Critical Design Review

STAHR succesfully passed its Critical Design Review (CDR) at the DLR Oberpfaffenhofen. The CDR is a crucial milestone in the product development process. It is a formal assessment of the detailed design of a project which is thoroughly evaluated to ensure it meets all technical requirements, is manufacturable, and can be effectively maintained. The primary goal is to approve the design for production or implementation and to transition the project into its next phase: verification and testing.

November 2023
IF-1 Campaign

The upcoming test campaign in Lampoldshausen will be the first demonstration of our flight-optimized hybrid engine together with our self-developed filling station and electronics system. Testing a full-sized rocket engine is a critical aspect of rocket engine development because it addresses variables and challenges that scaled-down versions cannot accurately simulate.

April 2023
IF-2 Campaign & Integration Progress Review

April 2024 marks two important points for the STAHR project: For once the last test campaign before launch, IF-2, will again take place in Lampoldshausen where we will hopefully test our final engine configuration and verify its functionality. Further another formal evaluation, the Integration Progress Review (IPR), is conducted during the end of the project's development to assess the advancement of merging various components or subsystems into the ultimate product or system. This assessment guarantees that the integration process is in accordance with the project's goals and schedule.

April 2024
Flight Readiness Review

The last of the reviews not to be held at the launch site, the FRR, or Flight Readiness Review, is a comprehensive assessment conducted before a space launch to confirm that all systems, components, and procedures are prepared for a successful mission. It ensures that the rocket and its supporting systems are ready for flight, addressing technical, safety, and operational aspects.

October 2024

In October 2024 STAHR is scheduled to launch from Esrange - the European Space and Sounding Rocket Range in Kiruna, Sweden.

Join The Team!

Check out our open positions and write us an email
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