On May 5, Atec celebrated our 140th launch success with InSight’s Mission to Mars. The launch took place from Vandenberg AFB and InSight is on a six-month journey to Mars. Atec-manufactured valves, on the upper stage Centaur engine, are propelling the spacecraft on its course to the red planet. InSight is scheduled to land on Mars in November. It will drill into and enable study of the planet’s interior core. Atec is proud to have been a part of InSight and many successful launches, dating back to 1997.
Atec valves have assisted missions in studying the Sun, Moon, Mars, Pluto, Jupiter and Saturn. Some notable missions are the New Horizon’s Flyby Pluto fastest spacecraft and ongoing mission that will have its farthest encounter in 2019, LCROSS Mission that crashed into the Moon making Atec valves a part of the moon’s subsurface, and the New Frontiers Mission to Jupiter where spacecraft Juno studied the planet’s gravity fields and helped us to understand Jupiter and surrounding planets.
Atec is looking forward to many launches coming up in 2018, especially the much-anticipated Parker Solar Probe Launch to the Sun. The launch window starts July 31, 2018 and will take place on a Delta IV Heavy from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Parker Solar Probe will flyby Mercury and then the Sun seven times over the next few years and will come closer to the Sun than any previous spacecraft. The probe will come within 3.8 million miles of the Sun’s surface. The mission goal is to better understand how energy and heat move through the Sun’s corona—outer atmosphere, solar wind and particles. Atec continues to support space exploration and human space travel. We can’t wait to be part of these critical missions, not only through cryofuel valves, but through our growing hardware and systems efforts.