United Launch Alliance (ULA) recently honored three suppliers with a 2021 Small Business Excellence award for their support across ULA’s product lines, including the Vulcan Centaur program.  Built on over 100 years of heritage, ULA’s rockets specialize in complex, accurate orbital insertion while meeting customer’s mission-critical needs with 100 percent mission success.


“Small business contributions are integral to our success,” said Tory Bruno, ULA’s president and CEO. “We are proud to recognize these suppliers who have gone above and beyond in support of our mission.”

Norman Filter Company (NFC) is a manufacturer based in Bridgeview, Illinois, that provides a variety of state-of-the-art welded filter elements. NFC played a vital role in launch operation successes by rearranging production schedules on short notice to replace several critical ground systems equipment filters at ULA launch sites on both coasts. Furthermore, NFC worked tirelessly on the design, qualification, and production of flight hardware filters for Vulcan while remaining flexible and positive through the many changes and demands across all development programs.

Bellows Manufacturing and Research (BMR), a manufacturer located in San Fernando, California, specializes in the design and manufacturing of unique metal bellows assemblies and metal joining solutions. Their invaluable ability to build flight hardware concurrent with Vulcan qualification test activities was critical in supporting Vulcan manufacturing assembly deadlines. BMR also demonstrated exceptional customer service with open and active communication, including single points of contact within engineering and production management as well as constant leadership support.

HiRel Connectors is a manufacturer based in Claremont, California, that excels in engineering and manufacturing highly reliable electrical connection systems. HiRel Connectors prioritized ULA development activities by expediting connectors for test adapters and enabling timely completion of multiple qualification tests across all programs. They also provided exceptional customer service by providing ULA with a tour of the HiRel Connectors facility where the teams were able to collaborate and align schedule needs.


ULA works with more than 2,000 supplier partners from nearly all 50 states, with a $5.9 billion five-year supplier spend and more than $11 billion total national five-year economic impact. 


Leveraging a legacy of 100 percent mission success launching over 145 missions to explore, protect and enhance our world, ULA is the nation’s most experienced and reliable launch service provider with world-leading reliability, schedule confidence, and mission optimization. The technologies we launch protect our country and troops in the battlefield, enable search and rescue, aid meteorologists in tracking severe weather, deliver cutting-edge commercial services, and expand our understanding of the Earth. We deliver value unmatched by any launch services company in the industry, a tireless drive to improve, and commitment to the extraordinary.


For more information on ULA, visit the ULA website at www.ulalaunch.com, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321). Join the conversation at www.facebook.com/ulalaunch, twitter.com/ulalaunch and instagram.com/ulalaunch.






Jessica Rye, (321) 730-5646 (Office), (321) 693-6250 (Cell) jessica.f.rye@ulalaunch.com