Headlines > News > Aerojet Completes Acceptance Testing on First MR-104G Engine Supporting NASAs Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle

Aerojet Completes Acceptance Testing on First MR-104G Engine Supporting NASAs Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:27 am via: Aerojet
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Aerojet, a GenCorp (NYSE: GY) company, in conjunction with Lockheed Martin and NASA, successfully completed vibration and hot fire acceptance testing on its first development MR-104G mono-propellant rocket engine planned for use on NASA’s Orion Crew Module (CM). Twelve 160-lb. thrust MR-104G engines, arranged in four single-engine pods and four dual-engine pods, provide the full complement of primary and redundant control required for critical maneuvers upon re-entry into the atmosphere.

Completion of the MR-104G acceptance testing was a critical milestone in the development of the Orion crew module propulsion system. This verification engine will be used to demonstrate Orion-specific performance and life requirements in support of the spacecraft’s initial orbital flight.

The acceptance test successfully demonstrated several new design features for the MR-104 engine including a newly developed 120 volt series-redundant propellant valve, a 120 volt/40 watt catalyst bed heater, a new chamber pressure transducer and an integral thruster mount configuration. Aerojet completed these modifications to support Orion’s shock and vibration environment requirements.

The MR-104 engine family originally provided in-space propulsion for the Voyager 1 and 2 and Magellan missions. Subsequent MR-104 variants provided propulsion for Landsat and NOAA as well as for other U.S. government programs.

“This testing success is a culmination of great teamwork on the design and risk reduction efforts,” said Aerojet Orion Program Manager, Kim Wierenga. “It is exciting to reach a point where Aerojet is verifying several new design features that enable this thruster to fly on Orion’s first flight.”

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