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HERCULES ANNOUNCES STATIC TEST FIRING OF SOLID ROCKET MOTOR UPGRADE FOR AIR FORCE'S TITAN IV SPACE LAUNCH VEHICLE

 HERCULES ANNOUNCES STATIC TEST FIRING OF SOLID ROCKET MOTOR
 UPGRADE FOR AIR FORCE'S TITAN IV SPACE LAUNCH VEHICLE
 EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., Oct. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Hercules Incorporated (NYSE: HPC) today announced the static test firing of the solid rocket motor upgrade (SRMU) for the U.S. Air Force's Titan IV space launch vehicle.
 "Preliminary data on the test again look very positive," said Richard Schwartz, president, Hercules Aerospace Company, "but, as in the last test, we must await hardware inspection before total results are known."
 He continued, "Quick-look data and hardware inspections are all positive. The advanced analytical techniques developed last year to predict grain deformation were validated again by this test. The lightweight composite case and improved nozzle appeared to perform as expected. Burn time was as predicted. Final performance values will require about 30 days of analysis.
 "This test, following the successful prequalification test on June 12, reconfirms that the SRMU is on track to support the large- payload requirements of the Department of Defense."
 Martin Marietta Astronautics Group, Denver, the prime contractor for the Titan vehicle, in confirming the test, re-emphasized the importance of the SRMU to modernization initiatives of the Titan mission as set forth by the Air Force.
 Upgraded solid rocket motors will increase vehicle payload capability by 25 percent, enabling the Department of Defense to lift critical payloads. At the same time, the improved system meets the latest launch safety requirements.
 The test motor's nearly 700,000 pounds of solid propellant performed as anticipated, delivering 1.7 million pounds of thrust with a burn time of approximately 140 seconds; these values are within specification range. This assures compatibility with other elements of the launch vehicle and payload demands on future Titan IV launches.
 "We feel highly optimistic about the preliminary results and, if the hardware inspections prove to be favorable, we have a second fully successful test," said Schwartz. "This achievement is due to the total team effort of the dedicated group involving Hercules Incorporated, Martin Marietta, the U.S. Air Force, Aerospace Corporation, and TRW. Their unified activities have successfully brought this program through an extremely difficult period," he added.
 Three additional static test firings are planned to complete qualification.
 Hercules Incorporated is a $3-billion diversified, worldwide producer of chemicals and related products and solid fuel systems. The Titan IV SRMU is produced at the company's Utah facility, which is one of the leading U.S. manufacturers of strategic and space rocket motors, as well as high-technology composite structures and graphite fibers.
 /delval/
 -0- 10/15/92
 /CONTACT: Donald R. Kirtley of Hercules, 302-594-6918/
 (HPC) CO: Hercules Incorporated; U.S. Air Force ST: Delaware, California, Utah IN: ARO SU:


LJ-MJ -- PH042 -- 0612 10/15/92 16:15 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 15, 1992
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