Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s Space Shuttle Main Engines Boost Equipment to Service and Repair Solar Array Joints on International Space Station

By SpaceRef Editor
November 16, 2008
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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s Space Shuttle Main Engines Boost Equipment to Service and Repair Solar Array Joints on International Space Station
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Three Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Space Shuttle Main Engines (SSME) successfully boosted supplies and equipment onboard Space Shuttle Endeavour today. Endeavour launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on Mission STS-126 – the 27th mission to the space station. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. company.

In a series of spacewalks, astronauts will service and repair the International Space Station’s Solar Alpha Rotary Joints, which keep the solar arrays on the outboard truss segments oriented toward the sun. In 2007, engineers noticed high currents and vibration in the starboard truss, which has limited its use. Astronauts will repair the malfunctioning joint and lubricate the other port-side truss. “We are intensely proud of our space shuttle heritage and helping our international partners work toward the completion of the space station,” said Jim Paulsen, SSME program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “Our top priority is sending our astronauts safely into space and bringing them back home safely after a successful mission.”

The port-side truss is complete with two sets of arrays, and is operating successfully. The starboard truss has one set of arrays, with another set scheduled for attachment in early 2009.

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, 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.