Orbital ATK has analyzed the results of a qualification test on the attitude control motor of the Orion spacecraft’s launch abort system.
The company said Monday results from the test in Elkton, Maryland indicate that the ACM’s HT-11 ‘high thrust’ demonstration was fully successful and the motor can now enter the program’s qualification phase.
ACM features a solid propellant gas generator and eight equally-spaced valves designed to provide 7,000 lbs. of thrust in any direction.
A three-valve version of the ACM was used during the HT-11 test to validate the latest design updates, Orbital ATK noted.
The motor is designed to help control Orion’s launch abort system during the main abort phase and to readjust the capsule for descent and parachute release.
Three qualification units are also slated to undergo additional static testing in 2018 and 2019 at Orbital ATK’s controllable propulsion center of excellence in Elkton.
Orbital ATK provides propulsion subsystems for Orion’s launch abort system, which Lockheed develops for NASA.