Aerojet completes Boeing CST-100 launch abort engine hot-fire tests


Aerojet Rocketdyne, a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, has successfully completed a series of hot-fire tests on two Launch Abort Engines (LAE) featuring innovative new propellant valves for Boeing’s Crew Space Transportation-100 Starliner (CST-100 Starliner) service module propulsion system.

The tests were conducted in the Mojave Desert in California, and confirmed the ability for the new valves to modulate propellant flow and control peak LAE thrust in the event of a launch abort.

The LAEs, designed by Aerojet Rocketdyne, include a fuel valve and oxidizer valve, which were developed and tested under the company’s Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) subcontract to Boeing.

“These innovative valves successfully enabled the engine to demonstrate precise timing, peak thrust control and steady-state thrust necessary during a mission abort,” said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and president Eileen Drake.

Under the CCtCap subcontract to Boeing, Aerojet Rocketdyne will provide propulsion system hardware, which includes LAEs, Orbital Maneuvering and Attitude Control (OMAC) thrusters, Reaction Control System (RCS) thrusters, and more.

Boeing will assemble propulsion hardware kits into the service module section of the Starliner spacecraft at its Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

November 2, 2016

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