Author Topic: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL  (Read 1947 times)

Offline jacqmans

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Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« on: 04/03/2017 01:17 PM »
Orbital ATK Completes Major Development Milestones in Next Generation Launch Vehicle Program


Company’s Partnership with U. S. Air Force Focused on New Intermediate- and Large-Class Space Launch Vehicles

New Launchers to Use Company’s Industry-Leading Solid Rocket Propulsion Technology and Other Modular Elements


Dulles, Virginia 3 April 2017 – Orbital ATK (NYSE: OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, today announced that it has made important progress over the past 18 months in developing advanced solid rocket propulsion and other technologies to be used in a new generation of intermediate- and large-class space launch vehicles. Through a combination of internal investment and government funding from an Air Force contract awarded in late 2015 by the Space and Missile Systems Center’s Launch Systems Directorate, the company’s Flight Systems Group recently completed design reviews, facility upgrades and tooling fabrication, and has now begun early production of development hardware for its Next Generation Launch (NGL) system.
 
The company’s modular NGL rocket family will be capable of launching a wide variety of national security payloads, as well as science and commercial satellites that are too large to be launched by its current fleet of Pegasus, Minotaur and Antares space launch vehicles.  The NGL vehicles will operate from both east and west coast launch facilities and will share common propulsion, structures and avionics systems with other company programs, including its smaller space launch vehicles as well as missile defense interceptors, target vehicles and strategic missile systems.

“The NGL program is a great example of how industry and government can work together to develop an American launch system to support national security space launch requirements,” said Scott Lehr, President of Orbital ATK’s Flight Systems Group. “Orbital ATK is well-positioned to introduce an intermediate- and large-class family of launch vehicles by leveraging the strengths of the merged company to achieve low-cost assured space access for current and future national security payloads and other satellites.”

Through commonality of hardware and other economies of scale, Orbital ATK’s proposed launch system will also reduce the cost of other U.S. Government rocket and missile programs managed by the Air Force, Navy, NASA and Missile Defense Agency, saving taxpayers up to $600 million on these programs over a ten-year period.

Over the past 18 months, Orbital ATK has successfully completed critical design reviews for major elements of the company’s solid propulsion stages, along with preliminary vehicle-level and launch site infrastructure reviews. The company has also refurbished a 60,000-square-foot production building, including installation of automated tooling, cranes and other equipment to enable the manufacture of large-diameter composite-case rocket motors. Recently, the company completed the manufacturing of prototype motor test articles to be used in verification activities this summer.

“The Orbital ATK NGL team, which now numbers several hundred engineers and technicians, has made tremendous progress since late 2015.  Building on this work, we are looking forward to providing the Air Force and other customers with a highly-reliable and cost-effective launch system within the next four years,” said Lehr.

The next phase of the program is expected to commence when the Air Force awards Launch Services Agreements in early 2018, which would entail full vehicle and launch site development, with work taking place at company facilities in Promontory and Magna, Utah; Iuka, Mississippi; Chandler, Arizona; and Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
« Last Edit: 11/07/2017 06:06 PM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Chris Bergin

Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #1 on: 11/07/2017 06:04 PM »
ORBITAL ATK SUCCESSFULLY TESTS FIRST MOTOR CASE FOR NEXT GENERATION LAUNCH VEHICLE

 

NGL System Achieves Critical Milestone with Completion of

Structural Acceptance Test

 

 

 

Dulles, Virginia 7 November 2017 – Orbital ATK (NYSE: OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, announced it has successfully completed an important milestone in developing advanced solid rocket propulsion and other technologies to be used in a new generation of intermediate- and large-class space launch vehicles. The company is in early production of development hardware for its Next Generation Launch (NGL) system, and on October 27 successfully completed the structural acceptance test on the first motor high-strength composite case for this program.

 

The applied structural loads during the test demonstrated over 110 percent of maximum expected motor operating pressure and 110 percent of operational/flight and pre-launch compressive/tensile line loads. This full-scale motor case segment will be cast with inert solid rocket propellant in early 2018 and shipped to the launch site for check-out of ground operations.

 

“NGL is one of Orbital ATK’s top growth initiatives,” said Scott Lehr, President of Orbital ATK’s Flight Systems Group. “This milestone clearly shows the progress being made by the hundreds of engineers and technicians in Utah and Arizona who are developing the NGL system.”

Orbital ATK’s NGL rocket family will be capable of launching the entire spectrum of national security payloads, as well as science and commercial satellites that are too large to be launched by the company’s current Pegasus®, Minotaur and AntaresTM space launch vehicles. The NGL vehicles will share common propulsion, structures and avionics systems with other company programs, including smaller space launch vehicles as well as missile defense interceptors, target vehicles and strategic missile systems.

 

 

-- more --

Orbital ATK Successfully Tests First Motor Case for Next Generation Launch Vehicle - Page 2

 

 

“By sharing a skilled workforce, facilities and subsystems across multiple programs, we’ve designed NGL to be affordable and reliable,” said Lehr. “For example, NGL uses common avionics that have flown on more than 100 missions with 100 percent success.”

 

The next phase of the program is expected to begin when the Air Force awards the Launch Services Agreement in mid-2018, which would entail full vehicle and launch site development, with work taking place at company facilities in Promontory and Magna, Utah; Iuka, Mississippi; Chandler, Arizona; Kennedy Space Center, Florida; and Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.

Offline Mike Jones

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #2 on: 11/07/2017 06:43 PM »
Who will supply their upper stage ? They need a Lox-LH2 upper stage to cover all EELV missions, right ?

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #3 on: 11/07/2017 07:42 PM »
Who will supply their upper stage ? They need a Lox-LH2 upper stage to cover all EELV missions, right ?
It has yet to be publicly announced if OA will either build or have someone supply their upper stage, but in the Blue Origin Section discussions pointed to an BE-3UEN LRE powered upperstage.

Latest OA NGL Factsheet

It does leave out the Stage-0 GEM-63XL SRM's in the factsheet as the GEM motors were still in development at the time.

Offline edkyle99

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #4 on: 11/07/2017 08:22 PM »
"This full-scale motor case segment will be cast with inert solid rocket propellant in early 2018 and shipped to the launch site for check-out of ground operations."

KSC?

 - Ed Kyle
« Last Edit: 11/07/2017 08:23 PM by edkyle99 »

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #5 on: 11/07/2017 08:32 PM »
"This full-scale motor case segment will be cast with inert solid rocket propellant in early 2018 and shipped to the launch site for check-out of ground operations."

KSC?

 - Ed Kyle
yes KSC first not sure when tests at VAFB will occur since ULA's SLC-2 area facilities will not be vacant until as early as next late year. I assume the SRB preparation facilities from West Coast STS programme would be used for VAFB launches.
« Last Edit: 11/07/2017 08:33 PM by russianhalo117 »

Online envy887

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #6 on: 11/07/2017 08:45 PM »
How is NGL handling the axial oscillation issues that Ares I had? Or are those within EELV limits for cargo?

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #7 on: 11/07/2017 09:13 PM »
"This full-scale motor case segment will be cast with inert solid rocket propellant in early 2018 and shipped to the launch site for check-out of ground operations."

KSC?

 - Ed Kyle
AFAIK:
Inert solid rocket segment are used to test the casting procedure. This will be done in Utah. This will also involve the X-ray examination (CT-scan) of the inert segment. (standard quality test for solid rocket (segments).
Then just like the STS/SLS solid rockets, they transport the inert segment by rail to KSC. There they will test if the segments can be handled inside the VAB and other facilities.
Are there facilities at VAFB to handle the RSRB/Castor X00 segments? Were these facilities completed for launching STS from SLC-6? and are they still available?
I'm very pleasantly surprised OATK is in fact producing this Compost RSRB replacement.
(There segments are roughly the same size as P120c [larger diameter but shorter, same propellant load].)

{I'm sorry, for posting this here, when this this was supposed to be a update topic, without discussion.}
« Last Edit: 11/07/2017 11:04 PM by Rik ISS-fan »

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #8 on: 11/07/2017 10:03 PM »
"This full-scale motor case segment will be cast with inert solid rocket propellant in early 2018 and shipped to the launch site for check-out of ground operations."

KSC?

 - Ed Kyle
AFAIK:
Inert solid rocket segment are used to test the casting procedure. This will be done in Utah. This will also involve the X-ray examination (CT-scan) of the inert segment. (standard quality test for solid rocket (segments).
Then just like the STS/SLS solid rockets, they transport the inert segment by rail to KSC. There they will test if the segments can be handled inside the VAB and other facilities.
Are there facilities at VAFB to handle the RSRB/Castor X00 segments? Were these facilities completed for launching STS from SLC-6?

I'm very pleasantly surprised OATK is in fact producing this Compost RSRB replacement.
(There segments are roughly the same size as P120c [larger diameter but shorter, same propellant load].)

{I'm sorry, for posting this here, when this this was supposed to be a update topic, without discussion.}
The facility was used for booster storage and preparation for the Enterprise pad tests.
http://www.ktb.net/~billmeco/Slc6a.html
Quote
Solid rocket motor segments are shipped has by rail from the manufacturer in Utah, and stored in the solid rocket booster facility.  The facility has the capacity to store two complete flight sets -- 16 segments and related hardware. There the solid propellant is inspected for damage and final flight preparations are made with all the SRB components. The motor segments are then transported to the pad individually and stacked by the MST's overhead crane. The two boosters contain four segments each with special flight hardware attached to the top and bottom segments. They are 149 feet high, 12 feet in diameter and weigh approximately 1.3 million pounds each. Together at liftoff, they generate nearly 5.2 million pounds of thrust.

https://www.globalsecurity.org/space/facility/vafb-slc-6.htm
Quote
To reach the Orbiter, the external tank would be shipped by barge from Louisiana to the tank landing facility at Point Arguello Boathouse, south of SLC-6. It then would follow a two mile tow route to the tank checkout facility for processing, subsequently proceeding to the launch pad for stacking. Booster segments were shipped via rail to a receiving and subassembly facility, which also refurbished booster forward and aft skirt sub-assemblies. The launch control center at SLC-6 monitored launch operations. Prior to launch the servicing towers would be moved on rails away from the pad area.

Booster recovery was to be conducted at Port Hueneme, 85 miles southeast of VAFB near Oxnard. The water retrieval operations were similar to those at Kennedy Space Center, FL. Port Hueneme also housed the initial wash facility and the booster disassembly facility.
(36)
(36)
Quote
36. See for example, "Slick Six," by Edgar Ulsamer, Air Force Magazine, November 1985, pp.49-51' "Vandenberg Planning for the Space Transportation System," by Lt. Col. Aubrey B. Sloan, USAF, in Astronautics and Aeronautics, November 1981, pp.44-50; "USAF Nears Verification Checks of Vandenberg Launch Facilities," by Bruce A. Smith, Aviation Week & Space Technology, January 21, 1985, p.79

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #9 on: 11/07/2017 11:24 PM »
Did ATK/Thiokol preserve the winding machine for the FWC's that would be used from SLC-6?
If this was the case, OATK only had to refurbish this facility. And the design for the FWC could be taken from the archive to develop the Castor x00 family.

Offline russianhalo117

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Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #10 on: 11/07/2017 11:54 PM »
Did ATK/Thiokol preserve the winding machine for the FWC's that would be used from SLC-6?
If this was the case, OATK only had to refurbish this facility. And the design for the FWC could be taken from the archive to develop the Castor x00 family.
I do not know because those were Fiberglass and the new ones are carbon fibre.

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: Orbital ATK Development Milestones for NGL
« Reply #11 on: 11/08/2017 01:52 AM »
Who will supply their upper stage ? They need a Lox-LH2 upper stage to cover all EELV missions, right ?
It has yet to be publicly announced if OA will either build or have someone supply their upper stage, but in the Blue Origin Section discussions pointed to an BE-3UEN LRE powered upperstage.

Latest OA NGL Factsheet

It does leave out the Stage-0 GEM-63XL SRM's in the factsheet as the GEM motors were still in development at the time.

http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ngl.html

"A 5.25 meter diameter LH2/LOX third stage, likely powered by a Blue Origin BE-3U engine derived from that company's proven New Shepard engine, would perform orbital insertion.  Orbital ATK would build its own tank assembly for the stage.  The company was expected to make a final engine supplier selection by mid-2017. "

Looks like US is joint venture between OA and Blue.
OA has flight proven US avionics so it good chance they use that.
Stage will need a life of few hours for GEO missions, if they can extend that life to 3days then direct delivery to DSG of Cygnus is also possible. At very less it would capable of well over 7t to TLI, allowing for BLEO Cygnus with larger fuel tanks.

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