All-American Rocket Configuration Finalized with Selection of Aerojet
Rocketdyne RL10C Upper Stage Propulsion
OmegA Scheduled for Ground Tests Next Year, First Launch in 2021
DULLES, Va.Apr. 16, 2018--
During the 34th annual Space Symposium in Colorado Springs,
Colorado, Orbital ATK (NYSE:OA), a global leader in aerospace and
defense technologies, today provided a detailed update on the important
progress being made on its Next Generation Launch System. The company
reaffirmed its commitment to the U.S. Air Force s Evolved Expendable
Launch Vehicle (EELV) program for national security space missions with
the announcement of the name of the rocket, OmegA, and the selection of
its upper stage propulsion system. As one of the company s largest
strategic investments, OmegA will provide intermediate- to heavy-class
launch services for Department of Defense, civil government and
commercial customers beginning in three years.
As one of Orbital ATK's largest strategic investments, the OmegA rocket will provide intermediate- to heavy-class launch services for Department of Defense, civil government and commercial customers beginning in three years. (Graphic: Business Wire)
Orbital ATK is very excited to partner with the U.S. Air Force to
develop OmegA, our new EELV-class launch vehicle, said Scott Lehr,
President of Orbital ATK s Flight Systems Group. Our OmegA rocket
provides the best combination of performance, affordability and
reliability to support the full range of our customers mission
requirements. Based on our experience of producing more than 430 launch
vehicles over the last 35 years, we have the rigorous processes,
operational discipline and oversight transparency that are expected by
our U.S. government customers. And with the industrial resources and
financial capabilities of a $5 billion revenue company, Orbital ATK is
fully committed to meeting the technical and schedule requirements of
this important program.
Over the last three years, Orbital ATK and the U.S. Air Force have
together invested more than $250 million in developing the OmegA rocket,
and the company has committed to an even larger additional investment to
complete its development and certification. Orbital ATK is already
building major propulsion and structural elements with a program
workforce of about 500 employees. OmegA is on schedule to complete
propulsion system ground tests in 2019 and to conduct its first launch
The rocket configuration consists of Orbital ATK-built first and second
solid rocket stages, strap-on solid boosters and a cryogenic liquid
upper stage. After careful consideration, Orbital ATK recently selected
Aerojet Rocketdyne s RL10C to be OmegA s upper stage propulsion engine.
The RL10 has provided reliable upper stage propulsion for more than
five decades and we look forward to continuing that legacy with Orbital
ATK and its OmegA rocket, said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President
Eileen Drake. By selecting the RL10, Orbital ATK is able to leverage
investments made by the U.S. Air Force and others to build resilient
space launch capabilities for our nation.
The RL10 has an extensive flight history and provides a low-risk,
affordable engine with outstanding performance, said Mike Pinkston,
Deputy General Manager of Orbital ATK s Launch Vehicles Division. OmegA
is a robust all-American launch system with its entire design based on
flight-proven technologies and common components from Orbital ATK s
diversified lineup of rockets and propulsion systems.
Orbital ATK has a long history of launching critical payloads for the
Department of Defense, NASA and other customers with the company s
Pegasus , Minotaur and AntaresTM space launch
vehicles as well as a wide array of strategic missile interceptors and
targets in support of critical national security launch programs.
We currently have 10 launch vehicle product lines that are in active
production and operations for our government and commercial customers,
leveraging the efforts of one of the industry s most experienced launch
vehicle development and operations teams, said Pinkston. The company
has built and delivered about 160 space and strategic launch vehicles
and approximately 275 target vehicles in the past 35 years, with current
annual production rates totaling about 20 vehicles per year.
Approximately 500 employees are currently working on OmegA, a number
that is expected to grow to about 1,000 people over the next 18 months.
The company s development team is working on the program in Arizona,
Utah, Mississippi and Louisiana, with launch integration and operations
planned at Kennedy Space Center in Florida and Vandenberg Air Force Base
in California. The program will also support hundreds of jobs across the
country in its supply chain.
The next phase of the OmegA program is expected to begin when the U.S.
Air Force awards Launch Services Agreements in mid-2018, which will
include the remaining development and verification of the vehicle and
its launch sites. After initial flights of its intermediate
configuration in 2021, OmegA will be certified for operational EELV
missions starting in 2022 with initial heavy configuration flights
beginning in 2024.
About Orbital ATK
Orbital ATK is a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies.
The company designs, builds and delivers space, defense and aviation
systems for customers around the world, both as a prime contractor and
merchant supplier. Its main products include launch vehicles and related
propulsion systems; missile products, subsystems and defense
electronics; precision weapons, armament systems and ammunition;
satellites and associated space components and services; and advanced
aerospace structures. Headquartered in Dulles, Virginia, Orbital ATK
employs approximately 14,000 people across the U.S. and in several
international locations. For more information, visit www.orbitalatk.com.
Source: Orbital ATK
Trina Patterson, 480-814-6504
Public and Investor Relations