Orbital ATK and other rocket-motor manufacturers plan to increase investments in advanced rocket engines as the Defense Department intends to make a $2 billion investment in hypersonic missiles, lasers and other high-speed weapons over the next five years, Space News reported Tuesday.
Pat Nolan, a vice president at Orbital ATK, told Space News at the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual conference the industry expects a rise in demand for rocket motors as the U.S. government aims to deter potential threats from foreign military powers.
“We see the need to add more energy, more distance” in the missiles sector, Nolan added.
Nolan noted that there has been an increase in research and development work on hypersonic weapons and that the company tries to distribute investments across various types of strategic and tactical motors.
Orbital ATK is set to hand over this week its 100,000th rocket engine to Lockheed Martin for integration with the military’s Hellfire missile and has begun tests on a new model of rocket motor with less-sensitive propellant, the report added.