PROMONTORY, Utah, May 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- ATK (NYSE: ATK) and United Launch Alliance (ULA) conducted a successful cold-temperature ground test today of a Graphite Epoxy Motor (GEM-60) solid rocket motor used to boost ULA Delta IV launch vehicles.
The main test objectives from today's static motor firing were measuring the rocket motor's performance at cold temperatures, qualifying a new vectorable nozzle on the motor and verifying the performance of new nozzle insulation at the lowest range of operational temperatures. Additionally, the test provides qualification for transitioning nozzle manufacturing operations from an outside supplier to ATK.
"This motor firing is an important test for ATK, as we have expanded the use of our in-house capabilities." said Scott Lehr, vice president and general manager, ATK Aerospace Group, Defense & Commercial Division. "By manufacturing the nozzles ourselves, we are able to provide a better value for our customers."
The 60-inch motor is a reliable, low-cost propulsion system comprised of a composite case. The successful test is an important milestone in the GEM-60 vectorable nozzle qualification. Initial test data indicate that the 60-inch diameter and 53-feet long motor, which was chilled to a 30F core temperature, performed as designed, producing approximately 270,000 pounds of thrust and burned for 90 seconds."GEM-60 motors have successfully boosted ULA's Delta IV Medium+ launch vehicles 11 times since 2002," said Mark Wilkins, ULA's vice president of Program Operations. "Ground tests are an important part of qualifying modifications and upgrades to flight hardware, as well as ensuring mission success on future flights." The GEM-60 motor is a strap-on booster that was developed for ULA by ATK in 2000 to increase the payload-to-orbit capability of the Delta IV Medium+ launch vehicles. The first two-motor configuration of the GEM-60 boosted the inaugural flight of the Delta IV launch vehicle family in November 2002, and the first four-motor configuration flew in 2009. The next GEM-60 motor test is scheduled for September and will be a fixed nozzle test.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
24/7 market commentary from Jim Cramer and 20+ veteran Wall Street gurus. Get access to the latest trading ideas on stocks, options, and ETFs as well as a real-time forum to see the pros exchanging their investment ideas.
- Jim Cramer + 20 Wall Street pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Real-time trading forum
- Actionable trade ideas
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV