Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Advanced Electric Propulsion System (AEPS) thruster recently completed development testing. Mission Critical AEPS Thruster Completes Development Testing for NASA’s Lunar Gateway

August 2021 – Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Advanced Electric Propulsion System (AEPS) thruster that will be employed on the Power and Propulsion Element (PPE) for NASA’s international lunar Gateway recently completed development testing. The next milestone for the program will be the PPE Preliminary Design Review in October. Three 12 kilowatt (kW) AEPS thrusters will serve as the primary source of propulsion on the PPE to enable orbit transfer and in-space maneuvering.

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Graphic: Lockheed Martin Aerojet Rocketdyne to Propel Lucy on First-Ever Mission to Study Trojan Asteroids

July 2021 – NASA’s Lucy mission, named after the 3-million-year-old skeleton that gave scientists unparalleled insight into human evolution, will provide a glimpse into the formation of our solar system by studying the Trojan asteroids in Jupiter’s orbit when it launches later this year.

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Harrison J. and Daphne S., two of the college students that AR recently hired as former interns, standing in front of the AR Orange, Virginia site sign. From interns to employees: How two Aerojet Rocketdyne interns launched their careers with Aerojet Rocketdyne

Aerojet Rocketdyne is committed to developing meaningful internship experiences that foster educational and professional opportunities for college students. After all, a successful internship with Aerojet Rocketdyne is not only good for the individual; it’s also good for the industry as a whole. Developing and investing in future defense and space leaders is essential to advancing our nation’s defense and space programs as well as bolstering the next generation of industry professionals.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne’s next-generation medium-power Hall thruster firing for the first time in a vacuum chamber at the Plasmadynamics and Electric Propulsion Laboratory at the University of Michigan.Aerojet Rocketdyne Successfully Demonstrates New Medium-Power Electric Propulsion Engine

June 2021 - Aerojet Rocketdyne recently began testing a newly developed, next-generation medium-power electric propulsion thruster under contract to the U.S. Space Force. The featured image shows the first firing of the second generation medium-power Hall thruster, which was designed to improve performance and affordability to meet in-space propulsion requirements.

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An Atlas V rocket launched the SBIRS GEO-5 satellite from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station on May 18, 2021. The launch marked the first operational use of Aerojet Rocketdyne’s RL10 engine equipped with 3D-printed components. Credit: United Launch AllianceRL10 Notches Key 3D-Printing Milestone with Atlas V Launch

Launch of Modernized SBIRS Missile Warning Satellite Marks Key 3D Printing Milestone for Aerojet Rocketdyne’s RL10 Engine

Mission launched by United Launch Alliance

May 18, 2021 - Today’s successful launch of a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket was supported by Aerojet Rocketdyne propulsion systems from launch through in-space operations. The rocket launched the fifth Space Based Infrared System Geosynchronous Earth Orbit (SBIRS GEO-5) satellite, built by Lockheed Martin, for the U.S. Space Force. Additionally, the launch marked an important milestone for Aerojet Rocketdyne as it was the first operational use of an RL10 engine equipped with 3D-printed components.

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NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover took a selfie with the Ingenuity helicopter on April 6, 2021, the 46th Martian day of its mission. Aerojet Rocketdyne’s MMRTG is visible, located at the aft end of the rover on the right side of the image. NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSSAerojet Rocketdyne’s MMRTG is Powering Perseverance Rover’s Mission on Mars

May 13, 2021 - After successfully landing on the surface of Mars, NASA’s Perseverance rover is embarking on its two-year sample collection mission, powered by a generator provided by Aerojet Rocketdyne in collaboration with Teledyne Energy Systems and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory. Designed and built by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the Perseverance rover’s mission is designed to search for evidence of ancient microbial life on the Martian surface.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne is the sole propulsion provider for the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, providing all 28 rocket engines aboard and supporting the mission every step of the way.Propelled by Aerojet Rocketdyne, OSIRIS-REx and NASA's first ever asteroid sample are headed home

May 10, 2021 - The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is traveling millions of miles to bring back the first ever asteroid sample to Earth! The two-plus year journey back to Earth began for the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft on May 10, and it will rely on Aerojet Rocketdyne propulsion as part of its return cruise.

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The first core stage for NASA’s Space Launch System rocket is unloaded from the Pegasus barge at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on April 29, 2021From the Test Stand to the Launch Pad: NASA’s First Space Launch System Core Stage Delivered to Kennedy Space Center

April 2021 - On March 18, 2021, four Aerojet Rocketdyne RS-25 engines on the first Space Launch System (SLS) core stage ignited in unison and flawlessly executed a full-duration 499.6 second hot-fire test that simulated the profile of an actual SLS flight, including throttling and gimbaling sequences. This was the most challenging test to date for the SLS program and key to returning astronauts to the Moon and eventually sending them on to Mars.

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Perseverance Rover being lowered to the surface of Mars on February 18. Credit: NASA/JPLAerojet Rocketdyne Puts the AR in Mars

March 2021 - Getting to Mars takes propulsion systems of all shapes and sizes, but one thing they nearly all have in common is Aerojet Rocketdyne.

Beginning more than four decades ago with the Viking 1 and 2 orbiter/lander missions, NASA has relied on Aerojet Rocketdyne to propel its Mars missions – from launch, to landing and everything in between. These missions have ranged in scale from the 25-pound Mars Pathfinder rover, to the most recent visitor, the 2-ton Perseverance rover, and will continue with the even larger Mars Sample Return mission.

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Dwain H., Aerojet Rocketdyne Engineer at the Camden, Arkansas locationAerojet Rocketdyne Camden Engineer Making a Difference at Work and in the Community

Manufacturing Engineer Dwain H. knows Camden, Arkansas, better than many. He grew up here, raised by a father who exemplified the importance of strong family ties and hard work and a mother who demonstrated how to persevere during adversity. He was always curious, participating in many math and science fairs while growing up. He describes his drive to always “figure out how things worked and how I could make them work better” as what inspired him to become an engineer.

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Kendall D. is an award-winning engineer working for Aerojet Rocketdyne in Huntsville, Alabama.Aerojet Rocketdyne RL10 Engines Set Stage for SLS Evolution

NASA and Boeing recently completed a Critical Design Review (CDR) of the Exploration Upper Stage (EUS) for NASA’s giant exploration rocket, the Space Launch System (SLS). The EUS will begin flying on the SLS Block 1B version to provide it with extra lifting power, in fact the SLS Block 1B has three times the lifting capability of current commercial vehicles.

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Kendall D. is an award-winning engineer working for Aerojet Rocketdyne in Huntsville, Alabama.Future Technology Leader Draws on Military Roots to Support Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Mission

Children of military families often choose to follow the path of their parents. Whether committing to public service or aiming to support the defense mission in other ways, the common thread is a sense of duty. Kendall D. is an award-winning engineer working for Aerojet Rocketdyne in Huntsville, Alabama. She grew up in Northern Virginia with her father who served in the Marine Corps for most of his life.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Advanced Manufacturing Facility in HuntsvilleGearing Up for SLS Green Run’s Main Event

The massive Artemis I core stage for the world’s most powerful rocket will roar to life for the first time in a matter of weeks. The test aims to last up to 8 minutes, the same amount of time the stage will operate to get NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket to space.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Advanced Manufacturing Facility in HuntsvilleA Year Later, an Impeccable Safety Record and Marked Employment Growth at Aerojet Rocketdyne’s AMF

August 2020: Huntsville, Ala. – In the year since Aerojet Rocketdyne officially opened its state-of-the-art Advanced Manufacturing Facility (AMF) near its Defense Headquarters here, the facility has increased its staffing three-fold and maintained an impeccable safety record.

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NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy works during a six-hour spacewalk to install three lithium-ion batteries on the International Space Station's truss structure. Credit: NASAInstallation of Aerojet Rocketdyne-Powered Batteries Completes Upgrade of International Space Station's Electrical Power System

July 2020: NASA recently completed the 3.5-year process of updating the International Space Station’s Electrical Power System (EPS) following installation of the final set of Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) batteries. As part of the Boeing team, Aerojet Rocketdyne designed, built, tested and assembled the battery cores to the overall design, functions and apparatus provided by Boeing. The EPS upgrade involved replacing obsolete nickel hydrogen (Ni-H2) batteries with reliable, higher-efficiency Li-Ion batteries. The final set was installed by astronauts over 4 extra-vehicular activities (EVAs) in June and July.

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The Apollo service module was outfitted with four reaction control clusters around its circumference, each containing four R-4D thrusters.Aerojet Rocketdyne’s R-4D engine: From Apollo to Orion and beyond

Aerojet Rocketdyne will soon enter the foreign-dominated dual-mode apogee engine market, offering the only U.S.-manufactured dual mode apogee engine. The company will conduct a new qualification test program on its Dual Mode HiPAT™ engine under contract to Space and Missile System Center, Space Development Corps.

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Launch of the ESA/NASA Solar Orbiter mission to study the Sun from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Feb. 9, 2020. Credits: Jared Frankle, NASA Solar Orbiter Social ParticipantCredits: Ball AerospaceSolar Orbiter Soars Thanks to Aerojet Rocketdyne Propulsion

Aerojet Rocketdyne delivered a major assist in the launch of a scientific probe that will study the Sun from as close as inside Mercury’s orbit.

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Animation of the DART Spacecraft approaching a small moon orbiting Asteroid Didymos. Photo Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins Applied Physics LabAerojet Rocketdyne Propulsion to Play Critical Role in Planetary Defense Asteroid Mission

The idea of an asteroid approaching and impacting the Earth may seem like a Hollywood plot that belongs on the silver screen, but the reality is that NASA is investing today in a planetary defense program that could prevent such a catastrophe in the future.

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Carried to orbit on a Ball Aerospace smallsat, the GPIM project will test an innovative, efficient alternative to toxic conventional chemical propellants. Credits: Ball AerospaceAerojet Rocketdyne Thruster System on NASA Green Propellant Infusion Mission Passes Major Test

The Aerojet Rocketdyne propulsion system aboard NASA’s pioneering Green Propellant Infusion Mission (GPIM) completed checkout and the first series of flight test operations in October and November of 2019. Operating on an environmentally friendly propellant boasting lower toxicity and higher performance compared to traditional propulsion technologies, the system is performing as predicted.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne and Northrop Grumman representatives celebrate the 20,000th delivery milestone at Northrop Grumman’s facility in Dulles, VA.Aerojet Rocketdyne and Northrop Grumman representatives celebrate the 20,000th delivery milestone at Northrop Grumman’s facility in Dulles, VA.

DULLES, Virginia, December, 2019 – Aerojet Rocketdyne recently achieved a tremendous milestone with the delivery of its 20,000th rocket engine built at the company’s Redmond, Washington site. The engine – a 0.2 pound thrust MR-103G – was received by Northrop Grumman in Dulles, Virginia, on October 29.

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RS-25 core stage integrationDual RL10 Engine Centaur Debuts on Atlas V to Ensure Safe Launch of Astronauts to Low Earth Orbit

The Orbital Flight Test of Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft marks a key milestone in NASA’s Commercial Crew Transportation Capability program. Scheduled to take place later this year, the historic flight also marks the debut of a Centaur upper stage powered by two RL10 engines on the Starliner Atlas V rocket.

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RS-25 core stage integrationRS-25 Engines Successfully Integrated with Space Launch System

Imagine! The ground rumbling, your heart pounding with excitement and then you see a wondrous sight, a bright orange rocket rising into the sky.  Thanks to the hard work by the NASA, Boeing and Aerojet Rocketdyne teams, we are one step closer to seeing that vision become a reality.

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MEV-1 approaching IS-901. Credit: Northrop GrummanAerojet Rocketdyne Propulsion Helps Enable New Satellite Servicing Market

Northrop Grumman recently launched its first Mission Extension Vehicle (MEV-1) with a number of Aerojet Rocketdyne electric and chemical engines onboard. MEVs have the ability to extend the mission life of satellites that have reached the end of their operational lifespan by taking over their attitude and orbit control.

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Apollo 50thAerojet Rocketdyne Celebrates Its Role on Historic Apollo 11 Mission; Return to Moon and Beyond

July 20, 2019 marks the 50th Anniversary of the historic mission to land humans on the moon. On July 16, 1969 a Saturn V rocket powered by five Aerojet Rocketdyne F-1 engines, sent the Apollo 11 mission hurtling toward the Moon. Four days later, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to step foot on the Lunar surface; marking the occasion with Armstrong’s famous words: “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

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Moon ReturnAerojet Rocketdyne Plays Critical Role in NASA’s 2024 Moon Return

June, 2019 - NASA has laid the groundwork to return Americans to the Moon by 2024 and Aerojet Rocketdyne will be a critical contributor on multiple facets of the historic endeavor. Aerojet Rocketdyne was recently awarded a study by NASA to further investigate designs for a Lunar Transfer Vehicle under NASA’s new Artemis lunar exploration program, and also provides key systems for NASA’s SLS, Orion and Gateway programs.

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Jettison MotorJettison Motor Proves Launch Abort Capability for Orion Spacecraft

June 28, 2019 - NASA’s Orion Program will demonstrate a critical milestone on July 2 when it validates its Launch Abort System’s (LAS), including Aerojet Rocketdyne’s jettison motor, to ensure that the system can steer the Orion crew module and astronauts to safety in the event of an ascent anomaly.

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Symposium FloorMissing the 35th Annual Space Symposium?

April 8-11, 2019 - Visit Us Virtually at the 2019 Space Symposium.

Here are a few of the highlights from Aerojet Rocketdyne's Booth #118 presence and sponsorship of several symposium events.

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NASA's Lunar Gateway. Image courtesy of Sierra Nevada Corp.NASA's Lunar Exploration Plan Finds Aerojet Rocketdyne in the Driver's Seat

August 17, 2018 - Getting to within striking distance of the moon is challenging enough, but if the ultimate objective is to achieve meaningful lunar exploration, getting there is only half the battle.

As the main- and upper-stage engine supplier for NASA’s heavy-lift Space Launch System (SLS), Aerojet Rocketdyne plays a prominent role in the first half of the equation. But the company also is integral to the second half: logistics in cislunar space and landing hardware on the lunar surface.

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