Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Wins $2.2 Million Contract Option for Solar Thermal Propulsion Rocket Engine

By SpaceRef Editor
June 26, 2008
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The United States Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne a $2.2 million contract for the fabrication and ground test of a Solar Thermal Propulsion rocket engine. This contract extends the current High Delta-V Experiment Program (HiDVE) another six months and follows a successful critical design review last March. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

The Solar Thermal Propulsion engine encompasses an innovative new technology that allows it to use less fuel by harnessing the sun’s energy. This gives the satellite greater ability to maneuver in space and conduct longer missions by extending the use of its fuel.

“We are proud to be part of this cutting edge technology that will revolutionize nanosatellites and on-orbit propulsion,” said Patrick Frye, program manager for the HiDVE program at Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “This will provide a dramatic increase in propulsive capability over current chemical thruster systems.”

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, Inc., a part of Pratt & Whitney, is a preferred provider of high-value propulsion, power, energy and innovative system solutions used in a wide variety of government and commercial applications, including the main engines for the space shuttle, Atlas and Delta launch vehicles, missile defense systems and advanced hypersonic engines.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

SpaceRef staff editor.