Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne helped boost NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite into orbit on a mission designed to survey the entire sky at infrared wavelengths in search of stars, galaxies and asteroids. The mission launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and used a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket with a Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne RS-27A engine. This marked the 234th flight boosted by the RS-27 family of engines. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

“There is always a sense of pride as we continually demonstrate the reliability and performance of the RS-27A engine,” said Elizabeth Jones, RS-27A program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “That pride is compounded by the knowledge our engine is helping scientists in the mission to find millions of objects never seen before in the universe.”

The telescope’s sensitivity is far greater than its predecessors, and will catalog hundreds of millions of objects as it circles Earth over the poles. NASA’s Hubble and Spitzer Space Telescopes, the European Space Agency’s Herschel Space Observatory, and NASA’s upcoming Sofia and James Webb Space Telescope will follow-up on WISE finds.

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 commercial building industries.