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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Helps Boost Satellite Monitoring Severe Weather Into Space

Bryan Kidder
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne
818 586-2213
[email protected]

Carri Karuhn
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne
818 586-4963
[email protected]

CANOGA PARK, Calif., June 28 -- Two Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne engines helped boost the second in a series of NASA/NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites, designated GOES-O, into orbit from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., yesterday, to help scientists monitor severe weather that leads to tornadoes, flashfloods and hurricanes. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company, powered a United Launch Alliance Delta IV rocket with a RS-68 engine and an upper stage RL10B-2 engine. This was the 722nd launch of a Delta vehicle using Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne's engine power.

GOES-O was developed by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and is equipped with an advanced attitude control system that provides enhanced image resolution and navigation to better locate severe storms and other weather conditions. GOES-O is the second spacecraft to be launched in the GOES-N-P series of geostationary environmental weather satellites, which orbit at the same speed as the Earth's rotation. Being geostationary allows the GOES to stay above a fixed point 22,300 miles above the Earth's surface and provides constant monitoring of atmospheric conditions that can trigger tornadoes, flash floods and hurricanes.

"An early warning system is absolutely critical when dealing with unpredictable weather patterns that can impact so many people," said Craig Stoker, RS-68 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. "Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is assisting in the process of providing improved tracking and predictive capabilities associated with atmospheric conditions that can trigger severe weather conditions."

The upper-stage RL10B-2 helped place the satellite into orbit. "When you are dealing with severe weather such as tornadoes, flashfloods and hurricanes, you need a reliable system that can identify the weather systems early," said Christine Cooley, RL10 program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. "We are proud to provide the upper stage propulsion enabling the placement of this satellite into orbit."

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, Inc., a part of Pratt & Whitney, is a preferred provider of high-value propulsion, power, energy and innovative system solutions used in a wide variety of government and commercial applications, including the main engines for the space shuttle, Atlas and Delta launch vehicles, missile defense systems and advanced hypersonic engines.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and commercial building industries.

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