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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Receives $12 Million Contract to Design and Build Pathfinder Divert and Attitude Control System for MDA MKV


CANOGA PARK, Calif. – The U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) awarded Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne $12 million for the first phase of a contract to design, build, integrate, and test a prototype Divert and Attitude Control System (DACS) that will power two different types of kinetic vehicles on missile interceptors. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

The Commonality Pathfinder DACS, as part of the Multiple Kill Vehicle (MKV) program, will allow the MDA to conduct controlled-flight hover tests on its two kinetic vehicles. The Pathfinder DACS will use existing Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne propulsion system technology, which will significantly lower development risk, cost and time.

“The Pathfinder DACS will allow the Missile Defense Agency to test the avionics, software and sensor capabilities of the kinetic vehicles, simulating the conditions of flight and demonstrating its ability to seek and destroy incoming ballistic missile targets,” said Bruce Janeski, MKV Commonality Pathfinder program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.

The Pathfinder DACS will be designed with a high-precision propulsion system capable of positioning kinetic vehicles to destroy multiple incoming ballistic missiles and countermeasures. The first test of the Pathfinder DACS is scheduled for mid 2010, while hover tests on the two kinetic vehicle designs are scheduled for 2011. The tests will be conducted at the National Hover Test Facility at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

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 building industries.


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