Business

March 31, 2014

Ball Aerospace, Aerojet Rocketdyne achieve expanded operational range for green propellant infusion mission

Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. and Aerojet Rocketdyne exceeded the technical range objective for the main thruster that will fly aboard the Green Propellant Infusion Mission.

This mission will demonstrate in a space environment, a “green” propellant known as AF-M315E, to replace the highly toxic hydrazine and complex bi-propellant systems in-use today.

“This is an exciting program that will enhance both future spacecraft performance and U.S. competitiveness,” said Jim Oschmann, Ball Aerospace Civil Space and Technologies vice president and general manager. “The new propellant technology, once demonstrated on GPIM, will raise both the 22 Newton and 1 Newton class AF-M315E thruster readiness for flight, enabling safer and less costly space missions with significant enhanced in-space propulsion performance.”

The GPIM team demonstrated in a lab environment that the 22 Newton-class thruster running AF-M135E propellant had an enhanced operation range over traditional hydrazine used in spacecraft. The test continuously demonstrated that the thruster had enough force to go as high as 27 Newtons and scale down to 4 Newtons. The 22 Newton thruster will fire simultaneously along with four smaller 1N thrusters aboard the GPIM satellite to initiate orbit inclination changes and altitude changes.

“The expanded operational range exemplifies the performance benefits provided by the AF-M315E, which enable a broad range of applications from low-Earth orbit to deep space and facilitate infusion across the marketplace,” added Roger Myers, executive director of Electric Propulsion and Integrated Systems at Aerojet Rocketdyne.

Ball is leading an industry and government team to develop and fly the GPIM mission. The new AF-M315E propellant, which is a Hydroxyl Ammonium Nitrate fuel/oxidizer blend, was developed by U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory at Edwards Air Force Base.

Aerojet Rocketdyne has developed the thruster and catalyst technologies which enable practical applications for space missions. The GPIM project is a Technology Demonstration Mission managed by the Space Technology Mission Directorate at NASA.

As the prime contractor and principal investigator, Ball collaborates with a team of co-investigators from Aerojet Rocketdyne, NASA Glenn Research Center, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA Kennedy Space Center and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory at Edwards Air Force Base, with additional mission support from the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Kirkland Air Force Base.




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


 
 

 

Headlines October 20, 2014

News: Navy grounds ‘Top Guns’ - The F/A-18s needs spare parts and in too many cases they’re being taken from brand new jets. This is a risk to national security and pilots’ lives.   Business: Boeing seeks revised schedule for U.S. aerial tanker - Boeing is revising its master schedule for developing the new U.S. Air Force...
 
 

News Briefs October 20, 2014

New military medical team to help with Ebola in U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the military to prepare and train a 30-member medical support team that could provide short-term help to civilian health professionals if there are more Ebola cases in the United States. His spokesman, Rear Adm. John Kirby, says the team...
 
 

Dragon ‘fires up’ for flight

The Air Force and NATO are undergoing a cooperative development effort to upgrade the avionics and cockpit displays of AWACS aircraft belonging to the 552nd Air Control Wing at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., and the NATO E-3 Sentrys from Geilenkirchen, Germany. The Diminishing Manufacturing Sources Replacement of Avionics for Global Operations and Navigation, otherwise...
 

 
Boeing photographs

Boeing-built X-37B successfully completes third flight

Unmanned spacecraft concludes record-setting 674-day mission   Boeing photograph A third mission of the Boeing-built X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle was completed on Oct. 17, 2014, when it landed and was recovered at Vandenberg...
 
 

Boeing concludes commercial crew space act agreement for CST-100/Atlas V

Boeing has successfully completed the final milestone of its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability Space Act Agreement with NASA. The work and testing completed under the agreement resulted in significant maturation of Boeing’s crew transportation system, including the CST-100 spacecraft and Atlas V rocket. NASA in July approved the Critical Design Review Board milestone for Boeing’...
 
 

AF to release small business research solicitations

The Air Force Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer program office is set to release its fiscal year 2015 list of topics Oct. 22, on the SBIR/STTR website.  Small businesses and research institutions with expertise to address the topics’ technology challenges are encouraged to submit proposals. During 2014, the Defense Department SBIR...
 




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>