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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Wins Contract to Develop Computation Tools to Predict Combustion Stability on Hydrocarbon-Fueled Rocket Engines

Nancy Colaguori
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne

Carri Karuhn
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne

CANOGA PARK, Calif., Nov. 9, 2010 – The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory awarded Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne a $1.35 million contract to develop improved computational tools to better predict combustion stability of hydrocarbon-fueled liquid rocket engines. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company.

The Advanced Liquid Rocket Engine Stability Technology – High Fidelity Model (ALREST-HFM) will be designed to improve the prediction of combustion instability using a combination of advanced algorithms and Computation Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The contract runs through 2013.

“The ALREST-HFM software has the potential to be game-changing technology to reduce risk, lower cost and speed up the development of future rocket engines,” said Brian Lariviere, program manager for Hydrocarbon Engines, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “We are proud to have been selected by AFRL, and look forward to working with our partners in development of ALREST-HFM.”

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne will team with Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga., which will provide computational code for the software; and HyPerComp, Inc., a company located in Westlake Village, Calif., that specializes in the research and development of computational tools for electromagnets, fluid mechanics, combustion and magneto-hydrodynamics. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne will provide its expertise in hydrocarbon-fueled rocket engines and lead the technology development.

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, 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. For more information about Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, go to www.prattwhitneyrocketdyne.com.

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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