An Atlas V rocket is launched April 3, 2014, at Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA.

ATK to build composite launch vehicle structures

ATK reached agreement on a $178 million contract award as part of the U.S. Air Force's Phase 1 Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) buy from United Launch Alliance (ULA). The order value includes hardware for both of the cur-rent Air Force EELV launch vehicles, the Atlas V and Delta IV. The initial contracting period includes large composite structures with deliveries commencing in AFY14 and continuing into early AFY18. The option period includes hard-ware deliveries in AFY17 through AFY19. The order consists of a variety of composite structures 13 to 18 ft in diameter with lengths up to 63 ft, including fairings, payload adapters and diaphragms, interstages, nose cones, and structures providing main engine thermal/aerodynamic protection. All of the structures will be fabricated in ATK's Large Structures Center of Excellence in Iuka, MS, employing advanced fiber placement and hand lay-up processes, automated machining, and ultrasonic inspection techniques.

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