NASA Audio File

VERSATILE SMALL-SCALE ROCKET MOTOR TEST EVALUATES NEW MATERIALS
06.01.10
 
VERSATILE SMALL-SCALE ROCKET MOTOR TEST EVALUATES NEW MATERIALS

Fire and sparks flew as a small-scale solid rocket motor was successfully tested May 27 at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. The 21-second firing tested a NASA sub-scale motor designed as a versatile, quick-turnaround and low-cost way to determine the performance of new materials and designs.

NASA is a unique customer for many materials and requires highly reliable systems, thoroughly tested and evaluated for human spaceflight programs. One change in the availability of a part, supplier or material can potentially impact vehicle design, flight operations and mission assurance. Finding adequate replacements involves extensive testing and qualification efforts. Testing a sub-scale version of a rocket motor is a cost-effective way to assess new materials, technologies or processes, and rapidly evaluate performance.

TRT: 50
Center Contact:  Jennifer Morcone Stanfield, 256-544-0034

HQ Contact: Michael Braukus, 202-358-1979

For more info: www.nasa.gov

Sarah Howse, Engineer & Test Co-Lead, Marshall Space Flight Center

Cut 1 (00:30) – “It gives engineers here at Marshall hands-on experience with these materials, with these processes of these materials so that we can be engaged in what’s going on full scale and as well as keeping us technically sharp so that when issues come up with flight hardware or with our full scale test program that we’re  able to better answer questions, we have the experience with these materials.”
› Play Now

Scott Ringel, Engineer & Test Co-Lead, Marshall Space Flight Center

Cut 1 (00:12) - “We redesigned the contour of the nozzle to represent future full-scale motors and in developing that design we had to go through the analysis to prove that it would be safe to test.”
› Play Now

Scott Ringel, Engineer & Test Co-Lead, Marshall Space Flight Center

Cut 2 (00:08) - “The nozzle directs the forces coming out of the motor and creates the thrust necessary to lift the vehicle off the pad. “
› Play Now