Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Contract awarded for engine

NASA picked Aerojet Rocketdyne of Sacramento, Calif., to restart production of the RS-25 engine for the agency's Space Launch System, the world's most powerful rocket. SLS will use four RS-25 engines to carry the agency's Orion spacecraft and launch explorers on deep space missions. The first four missions will be flown using 16 existing, upgraded engines that were used in the Space Shuttle program. Under the $1.16 billion contract, the heritage engines will be made more affordable and expendable, with fewer parts and welds and certified to a higher operational thrust level. The new engines will benefit from improvements in materials and manufacturing techniques, such as five-axis milling, 3D manufacturing and digital X-rays. The contract runs November 2015 and continues through Sept. 30, 2024. Engine testing will be done at NASA's Stennis Space Center, in South Mississippi. (Source: Space Daily, 11/24/15)