Boeing navigates NASA

NASA has awarded Boeing a $265m contract to produce the Ares I crew launch vehicle’s instrument unit avionics (IUA).



The IUA provides the navigation and control hardware for the vehicle that will launch the Orion crew exploration vehicle. Under the contract, Boeing will produce three IUA flight test units and six production units, with an option to produce four additional units per year from 2014 to 2016.



‘We will apply proven practices and expertise from several Boeing programmes, including EA-18G Growler, Future Combat Systems and Ground-based Midcourse Defence, among others,’ said Roger A Krone, president of Boeing Network and Space Systems.



Boeing will also employ up to 100 technical personnel to support NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, which will lead the design for the upper stage and instrument unit avionics for Ares I. In addition, it expects to employ up to 20 production workers at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, Louisiana, where the IUA will be added to the upper stage.