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ATK - Space Products Latest

ATK : 09 March, 2007  (Company News)
Alliant Techsystems composite technology supported yesterday's successful launch of the United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. The launch will place Orbital Express in-space refueling demonstration mission into orbit. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is the mission sponsor for the Orbital Express demonstration.
The satellite demonstration mission is set to conduct the first autonomous component exchange and first U.S. in-space refueling, as well as autonomous rendezvous and docking. A dual-satellite mission, Orbital Express includes the Autonomous Space Transfer and Robotic Orbiter (ASTRO) built by The Boeing Company and NextSat/CSC built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. Designed to transfer spacecraft fuel between them, ASTRO and NextSat are also scheduled to separate and demonstrate a rendezvous and capture sequence later in the mission.

ATK provided the solar array systems for both the ASTRO and NextSat satellites. ATK's Goleta, California site designed and fabricated the two solar array wings for ASTRO and the 2-panel solar array wing for NextSat. Both solar array designs incorporate lightweight, high strength composite panel substrates fabricated at ATK's Corona, California site.

The ATK 10' diameter composite heatshield, used to protect components in the Stage one engine compartment, was fabricated by ATK's Clearfield, Utah facility using fiber placement and hand lay-up techniques. This flight marks the 10th ATK composite heatshield flown on an Atlas V vehicle.
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