Moon Thrusters Withstand Over 60 Hot-Fire Tests

NASA and Frontier Aerospace are developing next-generation thrusters for use on Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander. In March 2020, thruster prototypes performed over 60 hot-fire tests in a vacuum chamber. (Credits: Frontier Aerospace)

NIAGARA FALLS, Calif. (NASA PR) — Future Artemis lunar landers could use next-generation thrusters, the small rocket engines used to make alterations in a spacecraft’s flight path or altitude, to enter lunar orbit and descend to the surface. Before the engines make the trip to the Moon, helping deliver new science instruments and technology demonstrations, they’re being tested here on Earth.


Astrobotic Selected for NASA Award to Develop Sensor for Precise Planetary Landings

Credit: Astrobotic

Astrobotic’s precision landing sensor will unlock compelling new destinations on the Moon for science, exploration, and commerce.

PITTSBURGH, Pa. (Astrobotic PR) – NASA’s Space Technology and Mission Directorate (STMD) announced today the selection of Astrobotic for a “Tipping Point” award to develop a novel terrain relative navigation (TRN) sensor for precise lunar landings.

This sensor will enable spacecraft to land with unprecedented precision at the most challenging and promising scientific and economically compelling destinations on the lunar surface, such as lunar skylights and the ice-rich poles of the Moon.


Loft Orbital Announces inSpace Mission Partner Program to Standardize Access to Space

A Loft Orbital-owned and -operated microsatellite, flying multiple customer payloads onboard as a service. (Credit: Loft Orbital Solutions Inc.)

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 6, 2018 (Loft Orbital Solutions PR) — Loft Orbital Solutions, a provider of Space Infrastructure as a Service, announced this week that it has signed agreements with over 20 companies to join its inSpace Mission Partner Program as inaugural members.

inSpace partners are companies across the space value chain with whom Loft Orbital will collaborate for its end-to-end space mission offering. These partners span Satellite Bus, Launch Services, Ground Segment Services, Payload and Data Analytics. Each partner’s product has been validated for compatibility with Loft Orbital’s technology.


Lockheed Martin To Help UK Space Agency Build First Commercial Spaceport; Launch First Orbital Rocket

Lockheed Martin UK Spaceflight Programme Video from Lockheed Martin Space on Vimeo.

FARNBOROUGH, England, July 16, 2018 (Northrop Grumman PR) — The UK Space Agency has selected Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) to help implement its vision for the UK Spaceflight Programme, an innovative initiative to create a world-leading commercial launch market that grows the UK economy through regular, reliable and responsible access to space.


NASA Space Act Agreements with Virgin Galactic, Moon Express, NanoRacks and More

NASA has released a document listing the 1,206 active Space Act Agreements  (SAAs) the agency has with commercial companies, non-profit organizations and state and local governments.

From that list, I’ve extracted agreements with individual companies. Below you will find tables listing SAAs that NASA has signed with Virgin Group companies, Moon Express and NanoRacks. There is also a fourth table that has SAAs with a number of companies and organizations that we follow on Parabolic Arc.

SAAs come in three varieties: reimburseable, non-reimburseable and funded. Under reimburseable agreements, a company or organization will pay NASA for its services. No money exchanges hands under non-reimburseable agrements. And under funded agreements, NASA pays the company to perform work or provide services. (The space agency made substantial use of SAA’s in the Commercial Crew Program.)


Nammo to Acquire Moog’s In-Space Propulsion Business

RAUFOSS, Norway (Nammo PR) — Nammo is delighted to announce that it has agreed with Moog Inc. to acquire its In-Space Propulsion businesses in UK and Ireland. Nammo’s CEO Mr. Morten Brandtzæg believes the deal will strengthen Nammo’s position as one of the world’s leading providers of compact thrusters and rocket engines for space launchers and satellites.


Moog Expands in Western New York

BUFFALO (Gov. Andrew Cuomo PR) — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Wednesday announced a $53 million expansion of Moog Inc. in Western New York, adding two high-tech facilities in Elma and Wheatfield, and creating up to 200 new jobs in the local space and defense industries.

Moog is one of the region’s largest employers and has more than 2,500 employees throughout New York. Cuomo said this investment from one of the world’s leading manufacturers of precision control components and systems further fuels the continued economic resurgence in Western New York.


Moog Completes First Project Under USAF’s Booster Propulsion Maturation Program

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. — The first of ten contracts awarded under the Booster Propulsion Technology Maturation Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) was recently completed. Moog Inc. successfully completed a “Non-Destructive Evaluation, Standards, and Testing” project, March 13. The company met all program objectives and completed all deliverables on time and on budget during the 15-month period of performance.

The Space and Missile Systems Center awarded the Booster Propulsion BAA contracts between November 2015 to January 2016 with the objective of maturing technologies and reducing risk in support of the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program. The BAA was part of a comprehensive Air Force plan to transition off the Russian made RD-180 propulsion system used on the Atlas V rocket by investing in domestic industry launch solutions.


NASA Team Demonstrates Loading of Swedish ‘Green’ Propellant

A Goddard team, led by engineer Henry Mulkey (middle), prepares a tank containing a Swedish-developed green propellant before its simulated loading at the Wallops Flight Facility late last year. Kyle Bentley (squatting) and Joe Miller (standing to the right of Mulkey) assisted in the demonstration. (Credits: NASA/C. Perry)
A Goddard team, led by engineer Henry Mulkey (middle), prepares a tank containing a Swedish-developed green propellant before its simulated loading at the Wallops Flight Facility late last year. Kyle Bentley (squatting) and Joe Miller (standing to the right of Mulkey) assisted in the demonstration. (Credits: NASA/C. Perry)

WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. (NASA PR) — A NASA team has successfully demonstrated the handling and loading of a new-fangled, Swedish-developed “green propellant” that smells like glass cleaner, looks like chardonnay, but has proven powerful enough to propel a satellite.


Air Force Awards New Rocket Propulsion Contracts

RD-180 test firing. (Credit: NASA)
RD-180 test firing. (Credit: NASA)

Christmas came early last week for Aerojet Rocketdyne, Northrop Grumman and Orbital ATK as the U.S. Air Force awarded rocket propulsion contracts worth a combined $14.5 million to the companies on Dec. 23.

The contracts support “technology maturation and risk reduction” in the areas of material manufacturing and development and advanced technologies. The work supports the effort to transition away from the use of Russian-built RD-180 engines in United Launch Alliance’s Atlas V booster.

The Air Force has awarded a total of seven contracts totaling just under $17 million. A list of the contracts is below.

Aerojet Rocketdyne $ 6,003,668
Northrop Grumman$ 5,465,705
ATK Launch Systems Inc. $ 3,125,810
Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering$    935,696
Tanner Research $    902,507
Moog Inc.$    728,337
Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering $    545,860
TOTAL: $16,979,246

Moog Acquires Broad Reach Engineering Company

EAST AURORA, NY, Jan. 2, 2013 (Moog PR) —
Moog Inc. announced today that it has acquired Broad Reach Engineering Company (BRE), located in Golden, Colorado. The purchase price is approximately $48 million, including $37 million in cash, a $6 million note payable and a $5 million potential earn out payment, based on the achievement of certain financial targets.

Broad Reach, founded in 1997, is a leading designer and manufacturer of spaceflight electronics and software for aerospace, scientific, commercial and military missions. The company also provides ground testing, launch and on-orbit operations. Trailing twelve month revenues were approximately $27 million.


ORBITEC’s Rocket Engine Soars Above the Mojave Desert

MADISON, Wisconsin (ORBITEC PR) — Orbital Technologies Corporation (ORBITEC) has successfully flight-tested its new rocket engine and technologies in Mojave, CA. ORBITEC integrated its Vortex Liquid Rocket Engine into a launch vehicle airframe designed and built by Garvey Spacecraft Corporation (GSC) of Long Beach, California and California State University at Long Beach.


Moog Joins Rocket City Space Pioneers GLXP Team

Dynetics PR – Huntsville, Ala. (May 19, 2011) – Dynetics and Moog will announce today at the International Space Development Conference that Moog has joined the Rocket City Space Pioneers as the newest team member.

Moog brings its heritage and proven flight hardware experience including the ESPA (Evolved Expendable Launch Secondary Payload Adapter). The ESPA was developed under a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract to the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate (AFRL/VS) with support from the Department of Defense (DoD) Space Test Program at Kirtland Air Force Base. Unused launch capacity, a growing interest in missions utilizing small satellites and a desire for affordable launch opportunities led to the development. Moog has been an industry partner for control solutions for almost 60 years, providing propulsion, actuation and electronic solutions for military, civil and commercial spaceflight.


Moog Profits Down 17 Percent; Space & Defense Strong


Moog Inc. (NYSE: MOG.A) (NYSE: MOG.B) today announced second quarter earnings of $23.7 million, and earnings per share of $.55, down 17% from last year’s second quarter. Sales of $453 million were down 3% from a year ago. This is the first quarter in 14 years that the Company has been unable to report an increase in quarterly earnings. The Company’s situation reflects the impact of the global economic recession, particularly as it affects the Company’s industrial business in Europe and Asia.


Aerojet to help Boeing build new moon rocket

Aerojet and Boeing have signed an associate contractor’s agreement to build the upper stage of the Ares rocket for NASA’s Orion lunar program. The contract also involves four other companies: Hamilton Sundstrand, Jacobs Engineering Group, Moog Inc., and Teledyne Brown Engineering. Aerojet, a division of GenCorp, is based in Rancho Cordova, Calif.

Read the Sacramento Bee story here. Aerojet has also issued a press release.