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Latest Satellite News Discussion, NASA Assembles Five-Segment Motor For Development Testing at General Satellite News forum; Promontory UT (SPX) May 10, 2010 Technicians at ATK Space System's test stand in Promontory, Utah, gently guided a segment ...

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NASA Assembles Five-Segment Motor For Development Testing
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NASA Assembles Five-Segment Motor For Development Testing - 11-May-2010, 02:58

Promontory UT (SPX) May 10, 2010
Technicians at ATK Space System's test stand in Promontory, Utah, gently guided a segment of NASA's five-segment development motor, or DM-2, into place in preparation for the second full-duration ground test, also called a "cold motor" test, targeted for September 2010. The motor's overall temperature will be lowered to 40 degrees Fahrenheit to validate the motor's performance in cold weather. Although similar to the solid rocket boosters that help power the space shuttle to orbit, the Ares I first stage motor includes several upgrades and technology improvements implemented by NASA and ATK engineers. Engineers will use the measurements gathered from the test to evaluate thrust, roll control, acoustics, motor vibrations, nozzle modifications and insulation upgrades.
The full-scale motor test will advance the safety, technology and knowledge of solid rocket motors. The motor is being developed by ATK Space Systems, a division of Alliant Techsystems of Brigham City, Utah, the prime contractor for the Ares first stage rocket motor.
On April 12, NASA began moving segments of the second Ares I rocket's five-segment development motor, or DM-2, from a production facility in Promontory, Utah, to the nearby test stand in preparation for the second full-duration ground test scheduled for September 2010. Engineers from NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., manage the team that will conduct this full-scale motor test - designed to advance the knowledge, safety, technology and capability of solids rocket motors.
The DM-2 motor includes several upgrades and technology improvements implemented by NASA and ATK engineers. Engineers will use the measurements gathered from the test to evaluate thrust, roll control, acoustics, motor vibrations, nozzle modifications and insulation upgrade.
Following ATK's manufacturing procedures, the segments were cast and then went through a complete X-ray inspection. The moving of segments to the test area will continue at a rate of one per week until the final segment arrives May 13. The time between segments allows for insertion into the test stand and assembly as each piece arrives.
Manufactured by ATK Space Systems, a division of Alliant Techsystems of Brigham City, Utah, the prime contractor for the Ares first stage, the motor is similar to the reusable solid rocket booster currently used by the space shuttle, although the new motor is one segment longer and has been modified to accommodate current mission objectives.
   
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