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Satnews Daily
August 11th, 2015

GOLauncher 1 From Generation Launch Services Receives AFRL Go Ahead

[SatNews] Generation Orbit Launch Services, Inc. (GO) has been awarded a Phase II Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) contract from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Aerospace Systems Directorate (AFRL/RQ), for continued development of the GOLauncher 1, a single-stage air launched liquid rocket vehicle designed to fly suppressed trajectories for hypersonic flight research applications.

Booster systems capable of flying suppressed trajectories increase flexibility for experimental payloads requiring high Mach number, high dynamic pressure flight environments. The effort will focus on preliminary design of GOLauncher 1, as well as design, build, and test of an integrated, hardware-in-the-loop Engineering Development Unit for the rocket vehicle. Partners on the program include Calspan Corporation, Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Inc., and Ventions, LLC.

Executive Comments

“The next phase of this program will allow us to not only continue design work on the vehicle, but also bring hardware manufacturing and software development together in the product development cycle much earlier than is typically done in complex aerospace systems,” said A.J. Piplica, the Principal Investigator on the effort. “Through this early integration and testing of hardware and software, we’ll be able to validate the assumptions we’ve made throughout the conceptual design process, demonstrating the performance, cost, and reliability of the vehicle well before flight.”

AFRL project manager, Barry Hellman, said, “Generation Orbit’s GO Launcher 1 design has the potential to provide a very capable and affordable hypersonic test capability to mature hypersonic technologies. The SBIR program is a great mechanism to develop this capability.”