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NASA Deputy Administrator to Tour Composites Technology Center at Marshall


Deputy Administrator Dava Newman will tour NASA’s National Center for Advanced Manufacturing Composites Technology Center at 2:30 p.m. CDT, Thursday, Aug. 6, during a visit to the agency’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. There, she will see a new robotic fiber placement system slated to develop processes for building the largest composite rocket parts ever manufactured.
Media attracted in attending the tour should contact Tracy McMahan or Kim Newton at 256-544-0034 no later than 4 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 5.

The 21-foot robot arm moves on a track in the Composites Technology Center in NASA’s National Center for Advanced Manufacturing at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. The robotic system can build large structures held by a rotisserie-like structure.

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Credit: NASA/MSFC/Fred Deaton

The tour will take place in building nr 4707. Correspondents must report to the Redstone Arsenal Joint Visitor Control Center at Gate nr 9, Interstate 565 interchange at Rideout Road/Research Park Boulevard no later than 1 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 6. All vehicles are subject to a security search at the entrance. Media will need two forms of photo ID and proof of car insurance.
Jeffrey Sheehy, senior technical officer in the Space Technology Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington, and Newman will join Marshall Center Director Patrick Scheuermann; Chris Singer, director of Marshall’s Engineering Directorate; and John Vickers, manager of NASA’s National Center for Advanced Manufacturing, to see the facility equipment for making composite structures and the robot.
NASA is improving capabilities that enable more reasonable, lightweight materials and processes for infusion into its exclusive missions, platforms and systems. Lightweight composites have the potential to increase the amount of payload carried by a rocket as well as reducing its total creation cost. NASA is leading demonstration projects and composites manufacturing technology development that are applicable to the Space Launch System known as a heavy-lift rocket designed to take explorers on deep space missions, including to Mars and an asteroid.

sls-rocket

An artist’s concept of the SLS Block 1 configuration of the most powerful rocket to ever be built

Credit: NASA/MSFC

A main design review of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) was accomplished in July clearing the stage for operate on the world’s most powerful rocket.

When completed in 2018 it will launch cosmonauts in the Orion spacecraft on missions to Mars and to an asteroid discovered in the lunar orbit.
But its 1st mission — Exploration Mission-1 — will launch an unmanned Orion spacecraft first to confirm for safety.

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