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Aerojet Tests Next Generation Safety Capability

by Staff Writers
Sacramento CA (SPX) Mar 01, 2007
Aerojet recently conducted an internally-funded static firing of a key Launch Abort System component. Orion's Launch Abort System is a new capability that will allow the astronaut crew to safely escape in the event of an emergency during launch. Aerojet's test of an abort motor reverse flow nozzle increases the technical readiness of the Launch Abort System concept.

The near full-scale reverse flow nozzle test demonstrated the nozzle performance needed to ensure successful implementation of the Launch Abort System. Aerojet's design incorporates a clean-burning solid propellant designed to minimize contamination of other parts of the rocket.

"The recent successful test of this capability positions Aerojet as a potential supplier for this technically challenging product," says Aerojet vice president of Business Development, Rick Yezzi. "This accelerated, four-month effort to design, fabricate, and conduct a high-fidelity static firing has demonstrated that the performance objectives of the Launch Abort System tractor motor can be achieved."

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Cornell To Study Planetary Magnetic Fields Propulsion Research Under NASA Grant
Ithaca NY (SPX) Feb 28, 2007
Dr. Mason Peck from the Cornell University College of Engineering received a NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I $75,000 award to study an innovative idea for altering spacecraft orbits in future missions. His paper, Lorentz-Actuated Orbits: Electrodynamic Propulsion without a Tether, made a compelling case for merging the small-scale physics of dust moving in a plasma and large-scale physics of planetary orbits to enable propellant-less spacecraft propelled by planetary magnetic fields.

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