September 14, 2011
NASA Begins New Partnership With Alliant Techsystems
NASA said on Tuesday that it has agreed to a partnership with Alliant Techsystems (ATK) on the development of the Liberty Launch Systems.
The rocket was originally called Ares 1 and was developed under NASA's Constellation moon exploration program.
It will be sold for satellite launches and station cargo resupply missions, according to a Reuters report.
The space agency said ATK will present NASA officials the Liberty systems level requirements, preliminary design, and certification process development.
"This agreement will provide the opportunity to look at the Liberty system to understand its design solution and risks, its capabilities and how it could be used to fly our NASA crew," Ed Mango, NASA's Commercial Crew Program manager, said in a statement.
NASA will be providing ATK with feedback based on its experience for advancing crew transportation system capabilities and the agency's draft human certification requirements.
"With this SAA we believe NASA will benefit from gaining insight into the various systems we are developing, and we can benefit from the feedback," Kent Rominger, vice president, strategy and business development for ATK Aerospace, said in a press release. "In the end, we hope to offer a commercial solution to NASA, the Department of Defense, and other commercial human spaceflight programs."
After its retirement of the shuttle program, NASA has been investing in the development of commercial space programs to taxi crews to the International Space Station.
Four companies split about $300 million in seed money earlier this year for the development of crew capsules and spaceplanes.
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