ATK (Alliant Techsystems)
said the successful launch on May 18 of a Boeing Delta II vehicle carrying a
U.S. government advanced demonstration technology satellite marks the first
time a space launch mission has been supported by both ATK Aerospace
Propulsion Company rocket motors and motors manufactured by ATK Thiokol
Propulsion Company since Thiokol was acquired by ATK in April 2001.

Nine GEM-40 strap-on motors manufactured by ATK Aerospace Propulsion
Company, Magna, Utah, provided the first-stage boost for the Boeing Delta II,
which placed into orbit the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO)
Geosynchronous Lightweight Technology Experiment (GeoLITE) satellite.
Six of
the boosters ignited at lift-off and provided vehicle thrust along with the
main engine for approximately 63 seconds.
Shortly after their burnout, the
remaining three boosters ignited and burned for approximately 66 seconds.
spent GEM-40 motors were then jettisoned from the vehicle in sets of three at
one-second intervals after air-lit ignition.

After the liquid second-stage burnout and separation and approximately
30 minutes into the flight, the Thiokol STAR(TM) 48B rocket motor ignited and
burned for 83 seconds, providing the necessary impulse to deliver the GeoLITE
satellite into its intended orbit.
Once the STAR? 48B motor completed burn,
an upper stage mechanism was initiated to reduce satellite spin rate prior to
final stage separation.

The Thiokol STAR® 48B motor is manufactured at the former Thiokol
facility in Elkton, Md., now part of ATK Missile Products Company, Rocket
Center, W. Va., which will continue to market the STAR® motor family and
integrated STAR® stages under the Thiokol name.

ATK Aerospace Propulsion Company, ATK Missile Products Company, and ATK
Thiokol Propulsion Company, Brigham City, Utah, are operating units within
ATK’s Aerospace Group.

“Last Friday’s successful Delta II launch illustrates the expanded solid
propulsion capabilities of the new ATK Aerospace Group,” said Paul Ross,
senior group vice president, Aerospace.
“With the addition of Thiokol’s
programs and technologies to our portfolio, we are the aerospace industry’s
leading supplier of high-quality propulsion products.”

The GeoLITE satellite is an advanced technology demonstration satellite
with a laser communications experiment and an operational, ultrahigh frequency
communications system.

ATK is a $1.6 billion aerospace and defense company with leading positions
in munitions, precision capabilities, propulsion, and composite structures.
The company, which is headquartered in Hopkins, Minn., employs approximately
10,000 people and has two business segments:
Aerospace and Defense.
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