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Milestone for spaceplane engine

28 November 2012 Last updated at 12:54 GMT

The UK company developing an engine for a new type of spaceplane says it has successfully demonstrated the power unit's enabling technology.

Reaction Engines Ltd (REL) of Culham, Oxfordshire, ran a series of tests on key elements of its Sabre propulsion system under the independent eye of the European Space Agency (Esa).

Alan Bond told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the technology has grown out of the 1980's HOTOL project for a Horizontal Take-Off and Landing space vehicle.