Defense

August 25, 2014

Minuteman III rocket motor aging surveillance test completed at AEDC

Raquel March
Arnold AFB, Tenn.

Arnold Engineering Development Complex personnel completed testing of a Minuteman III Stage II motor in the Complex’s J-6 Large Rocket Test Facility for aging surveillance of the 48-year-old defense program.

“The Stage II motor is part of the Minuteman III Aging and Surveillance test program to obtain motor performance data that is used to identify and quantify age-related degradation,” said Richard Kirkpatrick, an AEDC test manager and engineer in the Space and Missile Test Branch. “In addition, the motor is inspected post-test for any emerging critical failure modes.”

Since these motors are located in different operational locations for varying lengths of time, aging surveillance testing may uncover critical information that is valuable to the Department of Defense.

“Motors such as this Stage II, are pulled from the field and sent to us to test,” said Brandon Dorman, a J-6 test engineer. “The motor’s age and storage conditions are tracked and documented for the test. It is fired at the J-6 facility and various performance parameters are collected and analyzed to determine the motor’s overall performance. This information is then compared to build specifications, as well as previous firings, to assist in early detection of trends that could threaten the readiness of our nation’s ICBM [Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile] fleet.”

Preparation for the test involves coordination from different support areas at the Complex.
“We support buildup of the rocket motor and facility by translating the test requirements into information that the AEDC [test] team will use to prepare for the firing,” said Paul Ritter, a J-6 project engineer.

Ritter and David Schwer, also a J-6 project engineer, share responsibility for assessing motor performance through data analysis and technical reporting.

“We are able to determine, and relate to the customer, whether or not the motor has been able to maintain its required ballistic performance,” Ritter said.

In addition to validating current motor performance, acquired data from these aging surveillance tests may be useful in updating current requirements and developing requirements for future motors.




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


 
 

 

Headlines September 19, 2014

News: McKeon on broader military authorization: Anything can ‘fail or pass’ - Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said if Congress returns after the midterm elections to weigh a broader military authorization for the battle against Islamic State, it might not pass. Defense contractor gets 7 years for giving secrets...
 
 

News Briefs September 19, 2014

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,203 As of Sept. 16, 2014, at least 2,203 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,823 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 

Pratt & Whitney, U.S. Air Force complete qualification for F135 engine testing

Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. , together with its U.S. Air Force partner at the F135 Heavy Maintenance Center at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., celebrated another significant milestone qualification for F135 engine testing at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex. OC-ALC which in addition to engine testing is also qualified to perform...
 

 
Navy photograph

Triton has first cross-country flight from Palmdale

Northrop Grumman photograph The MQ-4C Triton Unmanned Aircraft System takes off from Northrop Grummanís Palmdale, Calif., facility Sept. 17 for its first cross-country flight to Naval Air Station Patuxent, River, Md. PALMDALE,...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

AFRL commander describes Air Force’s technology vision

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Maj. Gen. Thomas Masiello takes a question from an audience member after discussing Air Force Research Laboratory breakthrough technologies during the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air ...
 




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>