Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Engines Successfully Boost Government Payload Into Space
CANOGA PARK, Calif., Tuesday, April 3, 2012
The sky rumbled with the sound of a rocket launch today as Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne once again demonstrated the consistent reliability of its propulsion systems with the successful lift-off of a critical satellite for the U.S. government. The mission launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. on a United Launch Alliance Delta IV medium rocket with Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-68 and RL10B-2 engines providing the booster and upper-stage propulsion, respectively. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.
"There's nothing like the sound of a rocket engine as it boosts a payload into orbit, and with more than 700,000 pounds of thrust, the RS-68 engine certainly delivers," said Dan Adamski, RS-68 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. "It was another amazing launch for this highly reliable, commercially-developed engine, and we look forward to continuing to demonstrate its capabilities on future missions for our ULA and government customers."
"The reliable RL10 engine continues to serve a vital role ensuring these critical payloads are safely delivered into orbit, providing critical capabilities to our service women and men serving around the world," said Christine Cooley, RL10 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. "The RL10 upper-stage engine proved its worth again today, surprising no one with its impeccable performance."
The RS-68 is the world's largest hydrogen-fueled engine, designed for heavy lift with 758,000 pounds of vacuum thrust and 663,000 pounds of sea-level thrust. The RL10B-2 is a unique cryogenic upper-stage engine that provides 465 seconds of specific impulse and 24,750 pounds of thrust.
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne has a strong proven history of successfully powering launches with payloads that include humans; cargo; and satellites vital to space exploration, worldwide communication, navigation, defense, research and development, and weather prediction.
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, a part of Pratt & Whitney, is a preferred provider of high-value propulsion, power, energy and innovative system solutions used in a wide variety of government and commercial applications, including engines for launch vehicles, missile defense systems and advanced hypersonic engines. Behind its successful designs, manufacturing processes, and hardware are Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s research and development engineers, who solve tough problems in extreme environments.
About Pratt & Whitney
Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.