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Development and design company won massive contract to develop and design new rocket engines

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Inc. today announced it has won a $1.2 billion NASA contract for the design development of rocket engines for the next generation of spacecrafts. NASA awarded the funds Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne to develop and test a J-2X engine that will power the upper stages of the Ares I and Ares V launch vehicles.
 
"We are very proud to have been selected by NASA to power the return of U.S. astronauts to the moon and beyond,” said Stephen Finger, president, Pratt & Whitney. “This contract award is another important milestone in the partnership between Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne and NASA, which spans more than half a century.”

The two vehicles are part of the Orion program to send astronauts and cargo back to the moon before the year 2020.  The program builds upon the legacy of the Apollo-Saturn Program.  Liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen powers the J-2X, which provides 294,000 pounds of thrust to power the Ares vehicles.

“The J-2X builds on our knowledge and experience with the proven J-2 and J-2S engines, while simultaneously integrating state-of-the-art technology in order to give NASA a powerful, cost-effective, reliable engine,” said Jim Maser, president, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.

The newly formed contract includes ground and flight-testing and extends through December 31, 2012.


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RE: Competition?
By Ringold on 7/19/2007 9:36:43 PM , Rating: 2
Not sure why that got modded to zero. Possibly the only "industry" in which it makes a lot of sense to put up protectionist walls is high-tech defense and defense-related technologies -- like this stuff. We (the US) have already had some close calls (one of Dan Rather Reports better reports), and one need only look at an example like Argentina's lack of access to Exocet missiles during the Falklands War as an example. Of course, Argentina can't really afford to do everything in-house, but for multi-trillion buck America, not so much a big deal.


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