Raytheon to reach for the stars

Raytheon is to submit a proposal as the prime contractor to partner with NASA on the development and manufacture of the Instrument Unit Avionics on NASA’s Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle.



NASA is expected to distribute an official request for proposal for the Ares I Instrument Unit Avionics in early June. Ares I will be designed to carry astronauts into orbit when the Space Shuttle is retired in 2010.



Raytheon said in a statement that it has appointed former astronaut Don McMonagle, vice president of Quality & Mission Effectiveness at Raytheon Missile Systems, to lead the company’s pursuit of the Ares I Instrument Unit Avionics contract. McMonagle served as a crewmember on three Space Shuttle missions and commanded the STS-66 Space Shuttle flight.



‘We will partner with NASA to make the space exploration vision a reality by providing transferable processes and an expanded portfolio of industry-leading suppliers who are as eager as we are to help NASA achieve the Ares I objectives,’ McMonagle said.



To develop its proposal, Raytheon is working in Huntsville, Alabama, with Dynetics, a company that specialises in radar system analysis and engineering technical support for tactical weapon systems.