ULA Selects Orbital ATK for Large Composite Structures – Satellite Today

An Atlas V rocket carrying the NROL-55 mission lifts off from Space Launch Complex 3. Photo: ULA

An Atlas 5 rocket. Photo: ULA

[Via Satellite 12-31-2015] United Launch Alliance (ULA) has contracted Orbital ATK to provide large-size composite structures to be used for the Atlas 5 and Delta 4 vehicles in support of the current United States Air Force Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicles (EELV) programs. During the contract scope, Orbital ATK will produce large composite structures for ULA, with deliveries commencing in 2016 and continuing into early 2019. Hardware from the new order will support launches from both rockets through approximately 2021.

The order consists of a variety of composite structures 13 to 18 feet in diameter with lengths up to 63 feet, including fairings, payload adapters and diaphragms, interstages, nose cones and structures providing main engine thermal/aerodynamic protection. All of the structures will be fabricated in Orbital ATK’s Large Structures Center of Excellence (COE) in Iuka, Miss., employing advanced fiber placement and hand lay-up processes, automated machining and ultrasonic inspection techniques.

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