Rocket Fuel Startup Lands $800K in Funding

Posted: Updated:
A test fire by Adranos of its high-performance, solid propellant for long-range missile and space launch systems. (photo courtesy of Adranos) A test fire by Adranos of its high-performance, solid propellant for long-range missile and space launch systems. (photo courtesy of Adranos)

West Lafayette-based Adranos Inc. has raised additional funding to further the development of its rocket fuel technology. The company says the $800,000 will fund additional testing of its ALITEC propellant, which the Purdue-affiliated company says is more powerful and more environmentally friendly.

Purdue says ALITEC uses an aluminum, lithium alloy which creates more thrust and is less corrosive than traditional solid propellants. Adranos says the rocket fuel, which could be used by the U.S. military, NASA and other Department of Defense agencies, would dramatically increase the range of a missile and also reduce the missile's smoke signature, making it more difficult to detect.

The majority of the funding was provided by Archibald Cox Jr., chairman of private investment firm Sextant Group Inc., who has also joined the Adranos board of directors. The remaining amount, about $200,000, comes from Utah's USTAR TAP program, which supports private-sector technology development.

Purdue says Adranos will use the funding to perform static test fires and a 50-pound mix that "will enable ALITEC to achieve full characterization according to the Department of Defense's technology readiness scale prior to adoption into specific platforms."

Adranos is also one of 25 semifinalists in the U.S. Army's Expeditionary Technology Search, or xTechSearch, which will provide prizes of up to $325,000. If Adranos is selected as one of 12 finalists, the company plans to perform a live rocket flight test using ALITEC, which co-founder Chris Stoker says will provide a great opportunity to demonstrate its technology to senior Army leaders.

Stoker and co-founder Brandon Terry appeared on the INnovators with Dr. K segment on Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick in 2016 to talk about their technology. You can watch that interview by clicking the link below:

  • Perspectives

    • Big Data's Role in Site Selection

      In the world of site selection, companies assess the pros and cons of various factors to identify the location that best fits their current and future business needs. The list may seem endless: labor availability, utility needs and costs, real estate options, tax climate, incentives, quality-of-life considerations, even an area’s weather patterns and the likelihood of natural disasters. With the emergence of big data and the use of data analytics in all facets of business...



Company Name:
Confirm Email:
INside Edge
Morning Briefing
BigWigs & New Gigs
Life Sciences Indiana
Indiana Connections


  • Most Popular Stories

    • $25M Behavioral Hospital Coming to Central Indiana

      Danville-based Hendricks Regional Health is partnering with US HealthVest to develop a stand-alone behavioral center on the Hendricks campus in Plainfield. Known as the Indianapolis Behavioral Hospital, the facility will provide specialized inpatient and outpatient mental health care to patients of all ages.

    • Demand Fuels $120M Convention Expansion, Hotel Plans

      A $120 million proposal to expand the Indiana Convention Center and build two hotels at Pan Am Plaza in downtown Indianapolis, the city's travel and tourism association says, will put Indy in play for a bigger share of the lucrative convention business. Visit Indy Chief Executive Officer Leonard Hoops says the plans, which include 1,400 new rooms in two Hilton-branded hotels -- one of which will rise 38 stories -- and 300,000 square feet of convention and ballroom space, will help...

    • Bill to Fix Tax Issue For Trailer and Camper Dealers

      U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly (D-IN) has introduced a bill designed to fix what he calls a mistake in the 2017 McConnell-Ryan tax bill that has led to an adverse effect on RV trailer and camper dealers. Donnelly says the tax bill "significantly reduced" a tax deduction for dealers, which has led to higher inventory financing costs.

    • 'Heartbreaking' End For Nashville House

      The 91-year-old Nashville House restaurant is closing. The Brown County family dining staple will serve its last meal at the end of the month. In a post on Facebook, Gina Sarah Rogers, daughter of late-owners Andy and Fran Rogers, said it is "the end of an era and very heartbreaking." The restaurant is known for its country-style fried chicken and ham meals. Business on the property dates back to the late-1860s when an inn opened. It was acquired in...

    • CIB OKs $120M Convention Center Expansion, Two Hotels

      The Capital Improvement Board of Directors in Indianapolis, Visit Indy and Indianapolis-based Kite Realty Group Trust (NYSE: KRG) have unveiled $120 million plans to expand the Indiana Convention Center and add 1,400 rooms. The proposal, approved Friday morning by the CIB, involves two new hotels, including a 38-story property, and extending the convention facilities to the current Pan Am Plaza site. In January, the CIB released a request for interest for a convention center...