CANOGA PARK, Calif., 20 June 2012. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company, and RD AMROSS rocket propulsion systems propelled a critical U.S. government national-security satellite into orbit on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket, which is powered by the RD AMROSS RD-180 booster engine. The rocket’s upper stage is powered by the Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RL10 engine.
The Atlas V Centaur upper-stage is powered by a single RL10A4-2 engine delivering 22,300 pounds of thrust. The Atlas V Common Core booster is powered by the RD-180 engine, providing roughly 1 million pounds of thrust. The RD-180 is fueled by a kerosene/liquid oxygen mixture, provides an environmentally-clean operation, and uses an efficient, high-pressure staged combustion cycle.
"There's a great sense of pride knowing the RL10 engine plays a vital role in providing capabilities in support of national defense," says Christine Cooley, RL10 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. "We're tremendously proud of the RL10 engine, which has set the bar in upper stage propulsion with its demonstrated performance and reliability. In this business, there are no second chances."