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 EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Hercules Incorporated (NYSE: HPC) today announced the successful static test firing of the Air Force Titan IV solid rocket motor upgrade (SRMU) on Sept. 12 at approximately 3:10 p.m. PDT.
 The test, which demonstrated the SRMU flight design, concludes the qualification phase of the SRMU program and clears the way for production of the SRMU for flight.
 "The initial test data indicate that the SRMU again performed as predicted," stated Hercules Aerospace Company President Richard Schwartz. "We will know the total results when we complete test data analyses and hardware inspections during the next 30 days, but everything looks good at this time. This test is the culmination of a very rigorous and challenging SRMU qualification effort. During the past 15 months, we have successfully tested five motors and have qualified our SRMU for flight.
 "We have demonstrated continuous improvement in product quality as we moved through the Development and Qualification phases of the program. We are committed to continue that trend throughout production. The new, modern, large-rocket-motor facility used for SRMU manufacture is demonstrating higher levels of product repeatability, which drives reliability up. These benefits are attributable to both the modern facilities and a rigorous emphasis on process control. The efforts and commitment to excellence of the Titan IV SRMU team are paying off as we move forward into production and prepare to meet the future payload requirements of the Department of Defense," said Schwartz.
 Don Sticinski, Hercules Titan Projects vice president, said, "With this test completed, we will start production of motor segments. Much of the hardware for the first flight has already been delivered. We are targeting late January for delivery of our first SRMUs for that flight. I would also like to recognize the team effort of the Air Force, Martin Marietta, Aerospace Corporation, TRW, and Hercules personnel who have worked so hard to meet our demanding qualification test schedule and make us five for five."
 The test was the second to verify the operability of the SRMU at ambient cold temperatures (40 degrees Fahrenheit). In addition, the test validated an SRMU flight design that uses less insulation than the four previous test motors. The decrease in insulation enabled an increase in the amount of propellant in the SRMU, resulting in increased performance and payload capacity. The test motor's 700,000 pounds of solid propellant delivered 1.7 million pounds of thrust with a burn time of approximately 140 seconds.
 The Titan IV SRMU was developed for the Department of Defense to provide increased payload capacity, improved safety and reliability, and greater cost-effectiveness. The SRMU design takes advantage of a number of advanced solid rocket motor technologies, including a lightweight graphite fiber composite case, high-performance propellant, and state- of-the-art, automated manufacturing facilities, manufacturing processes, and inspection procedures.
 Development, qualification, and production of the Titan IV SRMU take place at Hercules' Bacchus plant, located near Salt Lake City. Hercules is a leading U.S. manufacturer of rocket motors for defense and space missions, high-technology composite structures, and graphite fibers.
 Hercules is a $3 billion, diversified, worldwide producer of chemicals, solid fuel systems, and related products.
 -0- 9/13/93
 /CONTACT: Donald R. Kirtley of Hercules, 302-594-6918/

CO: Hercules Incorporated ST: Delaware, California, Utah IN: ARO SU:

MK-LJ -- PH006 -- 1156 09/13/93 09:39 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 13, 1993

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