Space

October 24, 2012

ATK to develop MegaFlex((tm)) solar array structure

ATK photograph
ATK's MegaFlexTM solar array will provide over 10 times more power than the largest current satellite array technology.

ATK’s MegaFlex(tm) solar array was recently selected by NASA’s Space Technology Program under a Game Changing Technology competition for development of the promising lightweight and compact solar array structure. ATK received a $6.4 million contract for the MegaFlex(tm) development.

MegaFlex(tm), under development by ATK’s Space Components Division in Goleta, Calif., is designed specifically to meet the anticipated power demands of 350kW and higher, with very low mass and small stowed volume for future space exploration missions using solar electric propulsion.

“We are honored to win this program to develop the future space exploration power platform for NASA,” said David Shanahan, vice president and general manager of ATK Aerospace Group’s Space Components Division. “This win is a result of the outstanding innovation and capabilities of our Goleta team.”

NASA’s 18-month Phase 1 technology development program will increase the solar array size to twice that of the MPCV UltraFlex(tm) (approximately 40 feet in diameter) and will raise the technical readiness level of the MegaFlex(tm) design through hardware development and verification testing. ATK plans to further develop a flight-ready version of MegaFlex(tm) in preparation for a future space flight demonstration during the follow-on Phase 2 Technology Development contract.

ATK’s MegaFlex(tm) solar array is based on its spaceflight-proven UltraFlex(tm) solar array family of platforms that powered NASA’s Mars Phoenix Lander in 2008, is in series production of 10 wings for Orbital’s Commercial Resupply Services spacecraft, and is baselined on NASA’s recently announced Insight Discovery Mission to Mars awarded to Lockheed Martin. The exceptional performance of smaller (6-foot diameter) solar arrays used to power the Phoenix Lander contributed to the Phoenix mission being extended three times. ATK’s high-strength, lightweight and compact 15kW UltraFlex(tm) solar arrays-measuring nearly 20 feet in diameter-were also selected for deployment on NASA’s manned Orion Multi-purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV). The UltraFlex(tm) technology’s flight-proven reliability, fully-qualified low-mass performance and straightforward scalability to ~350kW class power levels established a credible basis from which to further develop MegaFlex(tm) to high technical readiness.




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


 
 

 
APL/NASA photograph

NASA probes studying Earth’s radiation belts celebrate two year anniversary

APL/NASA photograph This image was created using data from the Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescopes on NASA’s twin Van Allen Probes. It shows the emergence of a new third transient radiation belt. The new belt is seen ...
 
 
NASA photograph by David Olive

NASA completes successful battery of tests on composite cryotank

https://www.youtube.com/embed/qkGI6JeNY0E?enablejsapi=1&rel=0 NASA photograph by David Olive One of the largest composite cryotanks ever built recently completed a battery of tests at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Cen...
 
 
NASA/MSFC image

NASA completes key review of world’s most powerful rocket

NASA/MSFC image Artist concept of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) 70-metric-ton configuration launching to space. SLS will be the most powerful rocket ever built for deep space missions, including to an asteroid and ultimate...
 

 
Image courtesy of NASA, Z. Levay, G. Bacon (STScI)

NASA telescopes uncover early construction of giant galaxy

Image courtesy of NASA, Z. Levay, G. Bacon (STScI) Artist impression of a firestorm of star birth deep inside core of young, growing elliptical galaxy. Astronomers have for the first time caught a glimpse of the earliest stages...
 
 

Lockheed Martin, Electro Optic Systems to establish space debris tracking site

Under a new strategic cooperation agreement, Lockheed Martin and Electro Optic Systems Pty Ltd are developing a new space object tracking site in Western Australia that will paint a more detailed picture of space debris for both government and commercial customers. The site will use a combination of lasers and sensitive optical systems like those...
 
 

NASA awards research facilities, engineering support services contract

NASA has awarded a contract for research facilities and engineering support services to InuTeq, LLC of Greenbelt, Maryland, in support of the Mission Information and Test Systems Directorate at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif. This cost-plus-award-fee contract covers a one-year base period beginning Nov. 1, 2014 and four one-year options, and is valued...
 




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>