BE-4

America's next Rocket Engine

The first ox-rich staged combustion engine made in the U.S. will power two vehicles in the next generation of American orbital rockets.

BE-4 Engine

BE-4 is the most powerful liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueled rocket engine ever developed. Using an oxygen-rich staged combustion cycle, BE-4 is capable of producing 2,400 kN (550,000 lbf) thrust with deep throttle capability.

BE-4

Robust Design

We chose LNG because it is highly efficient, low cost and widely available. Unlike kerosene, LNG can be used to self-pressurize its tank. Known as autogenous repressurization, this eliminates the need for costly and complex systems that draw on Earth’s scarce helium reserves. LNG also possesses clean combustion characteristics even at low throttle, simplifying engine reuse compared to kerosene fuels.

BE-4 was designed from the beginning to be a medium-performing version of a high-performance architecture. It’s a conscious design choice made to lower development risk while meeting performance, schedule and reusability requirements. With our hardware-rich approach, multiple developmental units and redundant test stands enable a high test tempo and rapid learning.

A view from inside the test stand of the engine affixed horizontally to the metal structure. A fierce plume of white and orange exhaust is expelled from the black nozzle in the center of the frame.

BE-4 in the Market

The first ox-rich staged combustion engine made in the U.S. will power two vehicles in the next generation of American orbital rockets.

Moving Towards Full Rate Production

BE-4 is currently undergoing full-scale engine development testing at our facilities in Van Horn, Texas. Full rate production will occur in our new engine manufacturing facility in Huntsville, Alabama.

Multiple Customers

Seven BE-4 engines will power New Glenn’s reusable booster, and two BE-4 engines will drive the first stage of United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan launch vehicle.