July 6, 1999 NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., has selected 13 proposals for negotiations to develop and demonstrate innovative technologies for reusable launch vehicles that could help reduce the cost of space transportation. The total estimated value of contracts and cooperative agreements is $16 million. Better performance, streamlined operations and lightweight, long-life components are among the launch vehicle improvements expected to result from this technology development effort. Technologies selected for further development will lead to better airframes and propulsion systems for launch vehicles of the future. Advanced operations, long-life reusable boosters and propulsion systems fueled by a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and kerosene-based fuel are among the technologies to be developed. "This new activity will advance technologies aimed at making space transportation more like today's airline transportation," said Frederick Bachtel, deputy manager of the Marshall Center's Space Transportation Directorate. "The development of advanced reusable technologies for space transportation will significantly reduce the cost of getting to space and enhance U.S. commercial space launch competitiveness." Selected proposers, work area and estimated cost to NASA are:
*The Boeing Co.-McDonnell Douglas, Long Beach, Calif.; advanced reusable transportation technologies (composite panel technologies); $1.2 million
*Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Huntsville, Ala.; separate proposals for autonomous flight safety and peroxide upper stage hybrid technologies; $4.7 million contract
*Southern Research Institute, Birmingham, Ala.; ultrasonic spectroscopy of bonded structures; $100,000 contract
*Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space Systems, New Orleans, La.; composite liquid oxygen tanks for X-34; $2.5 million (NASA share) cooperative agreement
*Space America Inc., Huntsville, Ala.; regenerative cooling of Fastrac rocket engine thrust chamber; $900,000 contract
*Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.; validation of aluminum metal matrix composite housings; $800,000 contract
*Rocketdyne, Canoga Park, Calif.; turbopump development and advanced ignition peroxide technology; $4 million (NASA Share) cooperative agreement
*TRW Space and Electronics Group, Redondo Beach, Calif.; advanced catalyst beds; $400,000 contract
*Techland Research Inc., North Olmsted, Ohio; advanced inlet design technologies; $70,000 contract
*Aerojet Corp., Sacramento, Calif.; monolithic catalyst bed; $150,000 contract
*Orbital Sciences Corp., Chandler, Ariz.; hydrogen peroxide enrichment unit; $800,000 contract
*FMC Corp., Philadelphia, Pa.; safe production and storage of peroxide; $70,000 contract
A total of 79 proposals was submitted in response to NASA Research Announcement 8-21, Cycle Two.
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