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Northrop Grumman Secures APL Contract for Scalable SIRU for NASA's Solar Probe Plus Satellite

August 15, 2014

Northrop Grumman Corp. reported that it has been awarded a contract from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) to supply its space inertial reference system for NASA's Solar Probe Plus program.

Under a nearly $3 million contract, Northrop Grumman said it will provide its Scalable Space Inertial Reference Unit (Scalable SIRU) for the Solar Probe Plus mission, which APL manages for NASA.

In its release, Northrop Grumman noted that by supplying critical rotation rate data that enable the stabilization, pointing and attitude control of satellites and space vehicles, the Scalable SIRU will play a vital role in the Solar Probe Plus spacecraft's mission to fly through and examine the sun's atmosphere.

The Company said the Scalable SIRU delivery is expected in May 2016.

Northrop Grumman noted: Expected to launch in 2018, Solar Probe Plus will explore the sun's outer atmosphere, or corona, for the first time. The spacecraft will employ a combination of in-situ measurements and imaging to understand why the sun's outer atmosphere is much hotter than the sun's visible surface, and what accelerates the solar wind that affects Earth and our solar system.

"Our Scalable SIRU was competitively selected for the Solar Probe Plus mission because of its unparalleled performance, accuracy and reliability," said Bob Mehltretter, vice president, Navigation and Positioning Systems, Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems. "The system is equipped with redundant components that meet the strict, high performance requirements of the anticipated seven-year mission."

Northrop Grumman is a global security company.

More information:

http://www.northropgrumman.com

http://solarprobe.jhuapl.edu

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