Business

June 1, 2012

ATK, United Launch Alliance successfully test GEM-60 motor

ATK and United Launch Alliance conducted a successful cold-temperature ground test today of a Graphite Epoxy Motor (GEM-60) solid rocket motor used to boost ULA Delta IV launch vehicles.

The main test objectives from today’s static motor firing were measuring the rocket motor’s performance at cold temperatures, qualifying a new vectorable nozzle on the motor and verifying the performance of new nozzle insulation at the lowest range of operational temperatures. Additionally, the test provides qualification for transitioning nozzle manufacturing operations from an outside supplier to ATK.

“This motor firing is an important test for ATK, as we have expanded the use of our in-house capabilities.” said Scott Lehr, vice president and general manager, ATK Aerospace Group, Defense & Commercial Division. “By manufacturing the nozzles ourselves, we are able to provide a better value for our customers.”

The 60-inch motor is a reliable, low-cost propulsion system comprised of a composite case. The successful test is an important milestone in the GEM-60 vectorable nozzle qualification. Initial test data indicate that the 60-inch diameter and 53-feet long motor, which was chilled to a 30F core temperature, performed as designed, producing approximately 270,000 pounds of thrust and burned for 90 seconds.

“GEM-60 motors have successfully boosted ULA’s Delta IV Medium+ launch vehicles 11 times since 2002,” said Mark Wilkins, ULA’s vice president of Program Operations. “Ground tests are an important part of qualifying modifications and upgrades to flight hardware, as well as ensuring mission success on future flights.”

The GEM-60 motor is a strap-on booster that was developed for ULA by ATK in 2000 to increase the payload-to-orbit capability of the Delta IV Medium+ launch vehicles. The first two-motor configuration of the GEM-60 boosted the inaugural flight of the Delta IV launch vehicle family in November 2002, and the first four-motor configuration flew in 2009.

The next GEM-60 motor test is scheduled for September and will be a fixed nozzle test.

ATK is an aerospace, defense, and commercial products company with operations in 22 states, Puerto Rico, and internationally.

ULA program management, engineering, test, and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver, Colo. Manufacturing, assembly and integration operations are located at Decatur, Ala., and Harlingen, Texas. Launch operations are located at Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., and Vandenberg AFB, Calif.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
NG-people2

Northrop Grumman names VP, mission assurance for Electronic Systems sector

Northrop Grumman has appointed Sonal B. Deshpande vice president of mission assurance for the company’s Linthicum-based Electronic Systems sector. In this position, Deshpande is responsible for mission assurance across th...
 
 
sikorsky-raider

Sikorsky S-97 Raider helicopter achieves successful first flight

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a United Technologies Corp. subsidiary, announced May 22 the successful first flight of the S-97 Raider™ helicopter, a rigid coaxial rotor prototype designed to demonstrate a game-changing combination...
 
 
NG-people

Northrop Grumman appoints VP, program manager ISR division

Northrop Grumman announced it has appointed Steve Lunny, vice president and program manager for the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance division within the company’s Information Systems sector. Lunny will report...
 

 

HELLADS laser completes development

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. announced May 21 that the High-Energy Liquid Laser completed the U.S. government acceptance test procedure and is now being shipped to the White Sands Missile Range, N.M. At WSMR, the laser will undergo an extensive series of live fire tests against a number of military targets.  GAASI is a leading...
 
 
boeing-transaero

Boeing delivers Transaero’s first Next-Generation 737-800

Boeing May 22 delivered Transaero’s first Next-Generation 737-800. The airplane, sporting a new livery, arrived at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport. Boeing May 22 delivered Transaero’s first Next-Generation 737-800. The airpla...
 
 
Boeing photograph

Boeing-upgraded French AWACS take flight

Boeing photograph A French AWACS aircraft patrols the skies as part of a routine mission. The French AWACS fleet is in the midst of the Mid-Life Upgrade that modernizes the capabilities on board. Initial operating capability of...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>