Business

June 28, 2012

Aerojet delivers 100th HiPAT thruster

Aerojet, a GenCorp company, is marking the delivery of its 100th R-4D-15 High Performance Apogee Thruster to Boeing Space & Intelligence Systems in a ceremony today at Aerojet’s Redmond, Calif., production facility.

The event is commemorating the milestone delivery and the R-4D record of 100 percent mission success throughout five decades of service.

As the premier apogee engine of choice for raising large satellites and spacecraft into geosynchronous orbit, the HiPAT performs orbit-raising maneuvers for many of the world’s communication satellite platforms, including Astrium’s Eurostar 3000, Boeing Space Systems’ 702HP, MELCO’s DS-2000 and Loral’s LS-1300. It also has played critical roles in NASA missions such as Cassini’s orbit insertion of Saturn.

“The HiPAT is the highest-performing rocket engine in its class,” said Aerojet Vice of President of Space and Launch Systems, Julie Van Kleeck. “By offering a higher specific impulse than comparable engines, the HiPAT reduces the total amount of fuel required for the mission, allowing for either more equipment or longer operation of the spacecraft.”

The R-4D product line includes a series of liquid bipropellant engines using the propellant combination of nitrogen tetroxide oxidizer and either monomethylhydrazine or hydrazine fuel. These propellants are storable at room temperature and do not require a separate ignition source, simplifying many higher level integration issues while still providing high performance.

The R-4D was originally developed for the reaction control systems for the Apollo Service Module and Lunar Excursion Module. The HiPAT is the fifth generation of the R-4D 100 lbf thrust class of liquid bipropellant engines.

“This engine has incredible lineage,” said Aerojet Bipropellant Propulsion Program Manager, Steve Harper. “R-4Ds have supported every Apollo flight. During the Apollo program, 469 engines were flown in space and logged more than 875,000 pulses with the equivalent time of 16 years in space.”

Over the years, the R-4D has evolved into new design configurations as more modern rocket engine materials and technologies were developed. The R-4D-11, an intermediate iteration, is still in active production and has played critical roles in orbital maneuvering and braking for International Space Station missions on the European ATV and Japanese HTV resupply vehicles. It also is planned for use on the Orion service module. Developments in material systems in the 1990s resulted in the high performance HiPAT design flying today. More than 850 R-4Ds have been produced to date, including the 100th HiPAT, and all have performed successfully during the missions.

Looking to the future, Aerojet now has a next-generation design iteration which offers increased performance and reliability. The “dual-mode” HiPAT and Advanced Material Bipropellant Rocket thrusters provide a 1-3 percent improvement over the HiPAT and a nearly 20 percent performance increase over the original Apollo design. The HiPAT DM was qualified in 2002 and the AMBR thruster is ready for qualification testing.




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


 
 

 
boeing-ana2

Boeing announces ANA’s commitment to more jetliners

Airline continues fleet modernization with Boeing airplanes Boeing and All Nippon Airways announced Jan. 30 the airline’s intent to purchase three 787-10 Dreamliners to add additional flexibility to the airline’s 787 fleet....
 
 

Demand for airplanes lifts Boeing’s 4Q profit

Boeing’s fourth-quarter profit rose 19 percent as demand for commercial airliners trumped weakness in its defense business. Investors looked past a muted outlook for 2015 earnings and sent the shares to a 52-week high Jan. 28. Chicago-based Boeing and European rival Airbus have prospered as airlines around the world have gone on a shopping spree,...
 
 

Boeing wins $51 million contract to sustain ICBM guidance system

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. – Boeing will provide sustaining engineering support for the guidance system of the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile for the U.S. Air Force, ensuring the safety, security and effectiveness of the nation’s land-based nuclear deterrent, under a recently-awarded $51 million contract. “Since 1958, Boeing has stood alongside the U.S. Air Force to...
 

 

Orbital stockholders approve merger with ATK’s aerospace, defense groups

Orbital Sciences Corporation announced Jan. 27 that at a special meeting, the company’s stockholders voted overwhelmingly to approve the proposed merger with the Aerospace and Defense Groups of Alliant Techsystems Inc., pursuant to the definitive transaction agreement dated April 28, 2014. Approximately 99 percent of the votes cast at the special meeting voted in favor...
 
 

Northrop Grumman, MDA successfully complete command cyber readiness inspection

Northrop Grumman provided invaluable assistance for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s Excellent rating from the Command Cyber Readiness Inspection conducted on the Missile Defense Integration and Operations Center networks at Schriever Air Force Base, Colo. The CCRI evaluates a site’s compliance with information assurance and network defense policies and configuration standards for ...
 
 

Raytheon acquires Tucson-based Sensintel, Inc.

Raytheon has acquired privately-held Sensintel, Inc., a leading provider of unmanned aircraft systems solutions to the intelligence and special operations markets. Located in Tucson, Ariz., with approximately 50 employees, Sensintel will become part of Raytheon Company’s Missile Systems business. The transaction is not expected to materially impact Raytheon’s sales or earnings in th...
 




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>