US-based rocket and missile propulsion manufacturer Aerojet Rocketdyne has successfully completed hot-fire tests of a solid rocket motor, as part of its advanced tactical booster programme.

The tests were conducted at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) at Edwards Air Force Base in California, US.

Prepared to mimic extreme cold and hot-soak conditions for air-launch application, the rocket motor will be used to accelerate a vehicle during its initial phase of flight.

Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and president Eileen Drake said: “Aerojet Rocketdyne has been the leading supplier of missile technology for decades and pioneered the development of liquid-fuelled hypersonic propulsion systems.

“These ground hot-fire tests demonstrate the robustness of our motor technology to enable the next-generation of air-launched boosters.”

“In addition to tactical and strategic solid rocket booster motors, Aerojet Rocketdyne provides divert and attitude control systems, warheads and scramjet propulsion systems that support a wide variety of weapon systems and development programmes. We also provide ballistic missile targets through our Coleman Aerospace subsidiary.”

During the tests, the motors were operated at extreme temperatures to evaluate their performance across the full range of anticipated operational conditions.

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Drake added: “These ground hot-fire tests demonstrate the robustness of our motor technology to enable the next-generation of air-launched boosters.”

He further noted that data from the tests will allow the company to confirm its ballistic, thermal, structural and ignition models for the development of the next-generation operational booster rocket motor.

Aerojet Rocketdyne designed and fabricated the solid rocket motors under a contract received from AFRL to develop advanced booster technologies for use on future vehicles.