Titan rocket tested at Edwards AFBhttp://defence-data.com/storypic/titantest.jpg [not image]
6 April 2000
A Titan IV solid rocket motor upgrade, or SMRU, booster using new nozzle material has been test fired at Edwards Air Force Base in California recently.
The booster's static test firing took place on the US Air Force Research Laboratory's Test Stand 1-C overlooking a massive dry lakebed at Edwards. This is the latest validation test for the Titan IV space launch program managed by Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif.
Lasting 140 seconds, the test generated 1.7 million pounds of thrust. The 11-story high, three-segment solid rocket booster, weighing approximately 750,000 pounds, was filled with solid rocket propellant.
The Titan IV SMRU was developed to enhance performance of the US' largest heavy-lift space launch vehicle. It has increased the Titan IV system's lift capability by 25 percent, while improving its reliability.
This recent test provides the program with full system data to validate new materials used in manufacturing the SRMU's enhanced carbon-carbon nozzle. These new materials are manufactured to replace materials that were no longer compliant with or available under current environmental regulations.
SRMU's last test on Stand 1-C took place in late 1993, completing a successful series of five validation tests over a wide range of operating temperatures. Since then, SRMU's have been used for Titan IV-C launches.