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UTC Aerospace Systems provides critical control systems for Orion
by Staff Writers
Charlotte NC (SPX) Dec 08, 2014

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UTC Aerospace Systems' employees helped build NASA's Orion spacecraft, which completed its Exploration Flight Test (EFT-1) from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The team provided critical control systems, including active thermal control, pressure control, power control and switching hardware for the Orion spacecraft, as well as key systems for the Delta IV Heavy launch vehicle. UTC Aerospace Systems is a unit of United Technologies Corp. (UTX).

"We are honored to partner with Lockheed Martin and United Launch Alliance in this important milestone for NASA," said Allen Flynt, General Manager, Human Exploration and Launch Vehicles. "Orion is the vehicle for the next generation of space exploration, and our employees are helping to make that a reality."

The active thermal control system provides pumps and thermal expansion control of fluid circuits for cooling of the avionics boxes. The power control and switching hardware provide power connectivity from external power sources, conditioned power to the crew and service modules, and communication to environmental control and life support systems components.

The pressure control equipment consists of a negative pressure relief valve, which allows for pressure equalization between the vehicle interior and the outside air during reentry in the event the cabin pressure has leakage.

"These systems are key to crew and craft survivability," said Flynt. "Results of this flight test will help inform the development of the crewed version of the Orion spacecraft, which our employees are already working on, for its first un-crewed exploration mission (EM-1)."

The Orion multi-purpose crew vehicle will eventually take humans farther into space than any other space vehicle to date. It will be capable of low-earth orbit and lunar or deep-space mission.

UTC Aerospace Systems also provides critical systems for the United Launch Alliance Delta IV launch vehicle that put the Orion capsule into orbit. These include: the hydraulic power systems that provide hydraulic fluid to steer the launch vehicle; the power control and switching elements; fluid sensing units; and telemetry subsystems for both the common booster cores and the upper stage of the Delta IV heavy launch vehicle.

UTC Aerospace Systems designs, manufactures and services integrated systems and components for the aerospace and defense industries. UTC Aerospace Systems supports a global customer base with significant worldwide manufacturing and customer service facilities.

United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Connecticut, provides high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries.

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