Shopping Cart  |  Intelligence Center


HOME PRODUCTS & SERVICES MEDIA CENTER CONSULTING SERVICES DEMOS LOG IN CONTACT US

AEROSPACE & DEFENSE ELECTRONICS
AIRLINES, COMMERCIAL AVIATION & MAINTENANCE
AVIATION ENGINES, PROPULSION & AUXILIARY POWER UNITS
INDUSTRIAL & MARINE GAS TURBINES
INTERNATIONAL MILITARY MARKETS & BUDGETS - ASIA, AUSTRALIA & PAC RIM/EURASIA
INTERNATIONAL MILITARY MARKETS & BUDGETS - EUROPE
INTERNATIONAL MILITARY MARKETS & BUDGETS - NORTH AMERICA
MILITARY AIRCRAFT
MILITARY VEHICLES, ORDNANCE, MUNITIONS, AMMUNITION & SMALL ARMS
MISSILES & MISSILE SYSTEMS
NAVAL SHIPS AND OPERATING SYSTEMS
NON-US AEROSPACE/DEFENSE COMPANIES & CONTRACTS
REGIONAL, BUSINESS & GENERAL AVIATION
ROTORCRAFT
SPACECRAFT, LAUNCH VEHICLES & SATELLITES
US AEROSPACE/DEFENSE COMPANIES & CONTRACTS
Drones and Unmanned Systems - Air, Sea, Land, Micro & Robot Systems
UTILITIES, ROTATING MACHINERY & POWER GENERATION

 
ATLAS V AND DELTA IV PRODUCTION TO STEADILY DECLINE UNTIL REPLACED BY VULCAN
Thursday, July 13, 2017
Click image for a larger picture

An Atlas V blasting off

Source: Lockheed Martin


An Atlas V blasting off

Source: Lockheed Martin


Close
NEWTOWN, Conn. - Although the Atlas V and Delta IV have been carrying U.S. government payloads into orbit for over a decade under the EELV program, operations of those two launch vehicles are being threatened by new competition in the market and reliance on Russian-built engines. In order to remain competitive in the market, ULA intends to replace both the Atlas V and the Delta IV with a single family of launch vehicles known as Vulcan.

In May 2015, SpaceX's Falcon 9 was certified to launch U.S. military payloads, adding new competition to the market. The Air Force has since awarded SpaceX two contracts to carry GPS III satellites into orbit. SpaceX charged the Air Force $96.5 million to carry a GPS III satellite into orbit in February 2019, compared to about $164 million for an Atlas V with similar capabilities as the Falcon 9.

Another controversy facing the EELV program is the use of the Russian-built RD-180 rocket motor on Atlas V launch vehicles. Following the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, pressure from Congress increased to replace the RD-180.

Instead, ULA proposed designing an entirely new launch vehicle, dubbed the Vulcan. ULA expects the Vulcan to be much cheaper to produce, thereby increasing competitiveness against the Falcon 9 while also ending reliance on Russian-built rocket motors. Congress has expressed some skepticism that developing an entirely new launch vehicle is more cost effective than designing a new engine for the Atlas V.

However, the high cost of the EELV program means that ULA needs a new launch vehicle to remain competitive. Therefore, the business case for developing the Vulcan is strong enough that Forecast International believes the Air Force and ULA will convince Congress to fund the program. The Air Force has already initiated cooperative programs with a number of contractors to develop new technologies needed for a new launch vehicle. That work will continue, eventually culminating in the Vulcan that will replace both the Atlas V and Delta IV.

At the same time, Congress has dropped its opposition to using up to 18 more RD-180 engines, enabling the Atlas V to continue operations until the Vulcan has is ready.

After 2017, production levels will slowly decline as the launch vehicles lose some business to the Falcon 9, and eventually are replaced by the Vulcan. Production of the Delta IV Heavy will last the longest, considering its unique ability to carry extremely heavy payloads into orbit. Production of the Delta IV Heavy will likely continue until around 2028, before it, too, is replaced by larger versions of the Vulcan and the Falcon Heavy.

Source:  Forecast International
Associated URL: www.forecastinternational.com
Source Date: July 13, 2017
Author: B. Ostrove, Analyst 
Posted: 07/13/2017

 

NOTICE TO USERS

Warranty: Forecast International makes no guarantees as to the veracity or accuracy of the information provided. It warrants only that the information, which has been obtained from multiple sources, has been researched and screened to the best of the ability of our staff within the limited time constraints. Forecast International encourages all clients to use multiple sources of information and to conduct their own research on source data prior to making important decisions. All URLs listed were active as of the time the information was recorded. Some hyperlinks may have become inactive since the time of publication.

Technical Support: Phone (203)426-0800 e-mail support@forecast1.com

Subscription Information: Phone (203)426-0800 or (800)451-4975; FAX (203)426-0223 (USA) or e-mail sales@forecast1.com

Aerospace/Defense News Highlights is published by Forecast International, 22 Commerce Road, Newtown CT 06470 USA. Articles that list Forecast International as the source are Copyrighted © 2017. Reproduction in any form, or transmission by electronic or other means, is prohibited without prior approval from the publisher.

Forecast International invites all interested companies to submit their announcements and press releases for review and inclusion in our Intelligence Letters.

Contact: Ray Peterson, Director of Research
E-Mail: Ray.Peterson@forecast1.com
Phone: 800-451-4975
FAX: 203-270-8919



HOME PRODUCTS & SERVICES MEDIA CENTER CONTACT US PRIVACY STATEMENT TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Forecast International © 2017 22 Commerce Rd Newtown, CT 06470 USA Phone: 203.426.0800 Toll-Free: 800.451.4975 (USA & Canada) Fax: 203.426.0223 info@forecast1.com