The company said Friday it applied insulation and composite outer casing across the three-stage Ground Based Strategic Deterrent’s motor to achieve the manufacturing milestone.
The insulation will help prevent extreme temperatures caused by burning propellant inside the motor from affecting the outer shell, which will protect the entire structure from potentially damaging external materials.
“This manufacturing milestone further demonstrates the maturity of our first-stage solid rocket motor design, manufacturing process, tooling and business systems,” said Steve Lunny, vice president of Northrop’s GBSD program.
The company now plans to put the first-stage motor into a pressure test to validate its tooling and manufacturing processes and ensure its structural design integrity.
The milestone comes over a year after Northrop secured a GBSD engineering and manufacturing development contract in 2020 for the missile’s first-stage and second-stage motors.