Space

May 29, 2013

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne engines boost latest communication satellite into orbit

CANOGA PARK, Calif. - Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne engines provided the power to successfully place the fifth in a series of Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS-5) communication satellites into orbit May 24 for the U.S. military.

The mission was launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV medium rocket with Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-68 and RL10B-2 engines providing the booster and upper-stage propulsion, respectively.

This was the first flight of the Delta IV rocket after a successful launch in October 2012 in which an anomaly occurred with the upper stage engine system. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. company.

“The RL10B-2 performed flawlessly, providing the upper stage power to loft this key spacecraft into orbit,” said Christine Cooley, RL10 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “I am especially proud of the RL10 team’s very professional and tireless support to thoroughly investigate and address the anomaly experienced on the last Delta IV launch. Following a rigorous investigative process and working seamlessly with a team of highly skilled employees from Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, United Launch Alliance (ULA), Air Force, NASA and other aerospace companies, flight clearance was obtained. This team should take great pride in knowing their contributions will allow us to continue to build on the RL10 legacy – an engine that has helped shape this nation’s space program since its beginning 50 years ago.”

The RL10B-2 is a unique cryogenic upper-stage engine featuring the world’s largest carbon – carbon extendable nozzle that provides 465 seconds of specific impulse and 24,750 pounds of thrust. The rocket was boosted off the pad by the powerful RS-68 engine designed for heavy lift, with 758,000 pounds of vacuum thrust and 663,000 pounds of sea-level thrust.

“With 663,000 pounds of thrust at sea level, the RS-68 engine is a real workhorse in the industry, and today was no different as it proved itself once again,” said Dan Adamski, RS-68 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “The RS-68 and RL10 provide a winning combination of reliability.  We look forward to powering future missions in support of our brave servicemen and women.”

The WGS satellites are part of a larger system that increases military communications capabilities for U.S. and allied forces deployed worldwide. They help support the exchange of information, execution of tactical command and control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

 




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


 
 

 
lm-orion3

Orion spacecraft transfers To launch abort system facility

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j68mszdhTmY NASA and Lockheed Martin have finished fueling the Orion spacecraft with ammonia, hydrazine and high pressure helium at Kennedy Space Center’s Payload Hazardous Servicing Facili...
 
 

NASA telescopes find clear skies, water vapor on exoplanet

Astronomers using data from three of NASA’s space telescopes – Hubble, Spitzer and Kepler – have discovered clear skies and steamy water vapor on a gaseous planet outside our solar system. The planet is about the size of Neptune, making it the smallest planet from which molecules of any kind have been detected. “This discovery...
 
 
NASA photograph by Aubrey Gemignani

New crew launches to space station to continue scientific research

NASA photgoraph Three crew members are heading to the International Space Station after launching in a Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 4:25 p.m., EDT, Sept. 25. Three crew members representing the...
 

 

NASA expands commercial space program, requests proposals for IS resupply

On the heels of awarding groundbreaking contracts to U.S. commercial space companies to ferry American astronauts to the International Space Station, NASA has released a request for proposals for the next round of contracts for private-sector companies to deliver experiments and supplies to the orbiting laboratory. Under the Commercial Resupply Services 2 RFP, NASA intends...
 
 

ATK offers solid solution to U.S. Air Force’s RD-180 replacement request

ATK has provided the U.S. Air Force an American-made commercial solid rocket solution as a replacement for the RD-180 Russian-made, first-stage engine of United Launch Alliance’s Atlas V launch vehicle. “ATK’s solid rocket propulsion solution provides a cost-effective, reliable solution based on advanced technology,” said Blake Larson, president of ATK’s Aerospace ...
 
 

SpaceX breaks ground on Texas rocket launch site

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – The commercial rocket launches that could begin as early as 2016 in the southernmost tip of Texas will be a critical step toward one day establishing a human presence on Mars, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk said Sept 22. With waves from the Gulf of Mexico crashing just over the dunes...
 




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>