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Air Force stakes future on privately funded launch vehicles. Will the gamble pay off? - SpaceNews.com Mar 2018
"The schedule is getting tight for the U.S. Air Force as a 2022 deadline looms to bid farewell to the Atlas 5 and switch to a different rocket that is not powered by a Russian engine."

"... to find alternatives to the United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 that uses the Russian RD-180 engine"

"The Air Force signed cost-sharing partnerships with ULA, SpaceX, Orbital ATK and Aerojet Rocketdyne. ... The next step is to select three companies this summer to move forward with enginet [sic] prototypes."

"The selected competitors will face a schedule that seems ambitious even by the standards of commercial space companies."

"A contrarian view comes from the defense industry establishment. Loren Thompson, of the Lexington Institute — a think tank that receives funding from ULA owners Boeing and Lockheed Martin, Aerojet and other defense firms — has called on the Air Force to keep the Atlas 5 and swap the RD-180 engine for Aerojet Rocketdyne’s AR-1 rather than develop a new launch vehicle."
space  launch  USAF  ULA  SpaceX  OrbitalATK  AerojetRocketdyne 
march 2018 by pierredv
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