Genesis Spacecraft Powered by Aerojet Propulsion Heads Back to Earth

Press Release From: Aerojet
Posted: Friday, September 3, 2004

image Aerojet-built rocket engines have provided the necessary propulsion for the Genesis spacecraft in its mission to collect particles of the solar wind. Genesis, a NASA Discovery Mission, will return a capsule containing the solar wind samples to Earth on Sept. 8, 2004 that will be recovered in mid-air over at the Utah Testing and Training Range.

Genesis under a contract with Lockheed Martin Space Systems of Denver, Colo., which built the spacecraft under contract with NASA. Aerojet also provided the second-stage liquid rocket engine and the nutation control thruster for the third stage on Genesis' Boeing Delta II launch vehicle. The Delta II launched Genesis on Aug. 8, 2001.

"Aerojet is a proud member of the Genesis mission team," said Aerojet President Michael Martin. "We have celebrated multiple mission successes with NASA and our customers throughout 2004 and eagerly anticipate the unique mid- air recovery of Genesis. The understanding of solar system formation that will be gained by the analysis of these rare samples will be phenomenal and it has been an honor to contribute to overall mission success."

Aerojet was involved in every aspect of the Genesis mission by providing propulsion systems on the spacecraft and the launch vehicle. The spacecraft's rocket engines and nutation control thrusters were designed, tested and manufactured at Aerojet's Redmond, Wash. facility. The second-stage liquid rocket engine was designed and built at Aerojet's Sacramento, Calif. facility.

Genesis is fifth of 10 NASA Discovery Missions. Aerojet provided propulsion for every NASA Discovery Mission launched to date, including NEAR, Mars Pathfinder, Lunar Prospector, MESSENGER, and Stardust. Additional Discovery Missions that will include Aerojet propulsion are Deep Impact, and Dawn.

Aerojet, a GenCorp Company (NYSE: GY) is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader principally serving the missile and space propulsion, and defense and armaments markets. GenCorp is a technology-based manufacturer with positions in the aerospace and defense, pharmaceutical fine chemicals, and real estate industries. Additional information about Aerojet and GenCorp can be obtained by visiting the Companies' web sites at and

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