Press Release

Aerojet to Produce Key Propulsion Elements for NASA’s New Manned Space Exploration Vehicle

By SpaceRef Editor
August 31, 2006
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Aerojet to Produce Key Propulsion Elements for NASA’s New Manned Space Exploration Vehicle

Aerojet, a GenCorp Inc. company, announced today that it will produce key propulsion elements for Lockheed Martin and Orbital Sciences for Orion (formerly known as the Crew Exploration Vehicle), NASA’s next-generation space system that will enable human exploration of the moon, Mars and beyond. The Lockheed Martin-led Orion team was selected today to be NASA’s industry partner to design, develop and produce Orion.

Orion is the vehicle NASA’s Constellation Program is developing to carry a new generation of explorers back to the moon and later to Mars. Orion will succeed the Space Shuttle as NASA’s primary vehicle for human space exploration and is comprised of four main components: a service module, crew module, launch abort system and spacecraft adaptor.

Aerojet will provide to Lockheed Martin the main engine and a cluster of heritage maneuvering engines for the service module; and non-toxic reaction control (maneuvering) engines and a soft-landing enabling retro rocket for the crew module. Aerojet will also provide attitude control and jettison motors for the launch abort system under a contract with Orbital Sciences.

With these awards, Aerojet will continue its legacy of participating in every human mission the United States has flown, assert its rising status as a provider of non-toxic propulsion solutions, and reinforce its strong heritage of providing quality propulsion solutions to NASA programs dating back to the 1950s.

“Aerojet is proud to partner with Lockheed Martin, Orbital Sciences and NASA on Orion to implement America’s vision for space exploration,” said Aerojet President Scott Neish. “With decades of human spaceflight propulsion experience, Aerojet will be capable of supporting the Lockheed team with a multitude of mature products and highly skilled and experienced personnel.”

Aerojet is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader principally serving the missile and space propulsion, and armaments markets. GenCorp is a leading technology-based manufacturer of aerospace and defense products and systems with a real estate business segment that includes activities related to the entitlement, sale and leasing of the Company’s real estate assets. Additional information about Aerojet and GenCorp can be obtained by visiting the Companies’ web sites at and

SpaceRef staff editor.