Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. 24/7 Space News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



Five Aerojet Boosters Set To Lift New Horizons Spacecraft



Sacramento CA (SPX) Jan 17, 2006
Aerojet will provide five solid rocket boosters for the launch vehicle and a propulsion system for the spacecraft when a Lockheed Martin Atlas V launches the Pluto New Horizons spacecraft January 17 from Cape Canaveral, AFB.

The launch window opens at 1:24 p.m. EST on January 17 and extends through February 14.

The New Horizons mission, dubbed by NASA as the "first mission to the last planet," will study Pluto and its moon, Charon, in detail during a five-month- long flyby encounter. Pluto is the solar system's most distant planet, averaging 3.6 billion miles from the sun.

Aerojet's solid rocket boosters (SRBs), each 67-feet long and providing an average of 250,000 pounds of thrust, will provide the necessary added thrust for the New Horizons mission. The SRBs have flown in previous vehicle configurations using two and three boosters; this is the first flight utilizing the five boosters.

Additionally, 12 Aerojet monopropellant (hydrazine) thrusters on the Atlas V Centaur upper stage will provide roll, pitch, and yaw control settling burns for the launch vehicle main engines. Aerojet also supplies 8 retro rockets for Atlas Centaur separation.

Aerojet also provided the spacecraft propulsion system, comprised of a propellant tank, 16 thrusters and various other components, which will control pointing and navigation for the spacecraft on its journey and during encounters with Pluto-Charon and, as part of a possible extended mission, to more distant, smaller objects in the Kuiper Belt.

Aerojet is under contract with Lockheed Martin for the SRBs, thrusters and retro rockets, and Johns Hopkins University/Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL) for the spacecraft propulsion system. JHU/APL designed and built New Horizons for NASA and will operate the spacecraft after launch.

Aerojet developed, produced and tested the SRBs in California, using technology derived from its extensive experience producing solid rocket motors for Peacekeeper and Small ICBM missile systems. The boosters will be ignited at liftoff and burn for 85 to 90 seconds providing more than 1,250,000 pounds of thrust to get the launch vehicle off the pad and through Earth's atmosphere.

The spacecraft propulsion system was designed, produced and tested in Washington, and will support the spacecraft through the duration of the mission -- approximately 16 years. The spacecraft propulsion system uses technology developed by Aerojet for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Voyager 1 and 2 spacecrafts, launched in 1977 and now the farthest distant man-made objects in the solar system.

The MESSENGER spacecraft, now on its way to Mercury, also features an Aerojet propulsion system built for JHU/APL and uses technology also traceable to Voyager.

The spacecraft's propulsion system provides steering and fine pointing for cruise and encounter mission phases. Highly specialized fabrication techniques were utilized in the propulsion system fabrication and integration process in order to minimize leak risks and meet the long-life requirements of the mission.

"The upcoming Atlas launch supporting the New Horizons mission will be another crowning moment for Aerojet," said company President Scott Neish. "The five solid rocket boosters will provide an extraordinary start to an exciting scientific mission to Pluto. The Aerojet propulsion system will then guide the spacecraft on its long trip to Pluto and enable the spacecraft to properly orient itself while science is gathered."

"Aerojet's contributions to scientific research of the solar system are ongoing. With the anticipated mapping of the planet Mercury by MESSENGER, and the arrival of New Horizons at Pluto, Aerojet will have provided propulsion for spacecraft visiting every planet in the solar system."

Related Links
Aerojet
SpaceDaily
Search SpaceDaily
Subscribe To SpaceDaily Express



Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News


New Horizons Still On Schedule For Launch

Washington DC (SPX) Jan 17, 2006
NASA's New Horizons mission to the outer solar system remains on schedule for launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., at 1:24 p.m. Eastern Time Tuesday.







  • NASA Restructures Aeronautics Research
  • Manned Spaceflight Plans For India To The ISS And Beyond
  • NASA Refines Design For Crew Exploration Vehicle
  • Microbes Survive Firey Plunge By Columbia

  • Festoons And Ferric Sulfate Salts Keep Rovers Occupied
  • Opportunity Snaps A Fine Example Of A 'Festoon' Pattern In Meridiani Outcrop
  • Opportunity Puts The Arm On Ted
  • Spirit Heading To 'Home Plate'

  • Rundown Of This Year's Launch Activities At Esrange
  • ISRO To Commercialise Launch Vehicle Technology
  • Soyuz To Launch Radarsat-2
  • CAGW Criticizes Subsidies For ULA Satellite Launches

  • New Legislation Initiated To Support Commercial Remote Sensing Industry
  • Indian Small EO Satellites To Study Atmosphere
  • Space Imaging Awarded Additional $24 Mln From Pentagon's NGA
  • NG Ships First Advanced Tech Microwave Sounder Flight Instrument To NASA

  • New Horizons Still On Schedule For Launch
  • Five Aerojet Boosters Set To Lift New Horizons Spacecraft
  • Kuiper Belt Moons Are Starting to Seem Typical
  • New Horizons Remains On Course For January 17 Launch To Pluto

  • Cartwheel Galaxy Makes Waves In New NASA Image
  • Astronomers Detect Largest Cluster Of Red Supergiants
  • Integral Identifies Supernova Rate For Milky Way
  • Large Survey Of Galaxies Yields New Findings On Star Formation

  • Apollo Chronicles
  • An Explosion On The Moon
  • SMART 1 Uses New Imaging Technique In Lunar Orbit
  • Moon Storms

  • EU, South Korea Seal Galileo Agreement
  • Contract For In-Orbit Validation Of Galileo System To Be Signed Thursday
  • Galileo GIOVEA Using Marotta Equipment For Its Propulsion Systems
  • SiRFstarIII Featured in TomToms Innovative Portable Navigation Product

  • The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2006 - SpaceDaily.AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA PortalReports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additionalcopyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement