Partner News

RL10 Selected for OmegA™ Rocket

Written by: Space Foundation Editorial Team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (April 16, 2018) — Orbital ATK has selected the RL10 rocket engine to provide propulsion for the third stage of the company’s OmegA rocket which includes a lineup of intermediate- and large-class space launch vehicle.

“The RL10 has provided reliable upper stage propulsion for more than five decades and we look forward to continuing that legacy with Orbital ATK and its OmegA rocket,” said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President Eileen Drake. “By selecting the RL10, Orbital ATK is able to leverage investments made by the U.S. Air Force and others to build resilient space launch capabilities for our nation.”

“The RL10 has an extensive flight history and provides a low-risk, affordable engine with outstanding performance,” said Mike Pinkston, Deputy General Manager of Orbital ATK’s Launch Vehicles Division. “OmegA is a robust all-American launch system with its entire design based on flight-proven technologies and common components from Orbital ATK’s diversified lineup of rockets and propulsion systems.”

The RL10 burns cryogenic liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen propellants using a highly-efficient expander engine cycle. With nearly 500 engines flown in space, the RL10 has helped place hundreds of satellites into orbit, sent spacecraft to explore every planet in our solar system and propelled the first human-made object, the Voyager I spacecraft, into interstellar space.

The RL10C-5-1 model that will support the OmegA system is derived from the RL10C-1 that made its inaugural flight in December 2014. This new variant of the RL10 will feature an injector assembly that is built using additive manufacturing, or 3-D printing.

“Having our RL10 engine selected to provide upper stage propulsion for a fourth launch vehicle reflects the confidence industry places in our product,” said Space Business Unit Senior Vice President Jerry Tarnacki. “It also confirms that the steps Aerojet Rocketdyne has been taking to make our products more competitive–such as incorporating 3-D printing to reduce production costs–are being welcomed in the marketplace.”

Aerojet Rocketdyne, a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AJRD), is an innovative company delivering solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense markets. The company is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets. Additional information about Aerojet Rocketdyne can be obtained by visiting our websites at and

# # # 

Contact: Todd McConnell, Aerojet Rocketdyne, 561-882-5395, [email protected]