Scottsdale company helps with communication system for NASA’s new moon rocket

General Dynamics Mission Systems played a key role in the moon rocket.
General Dynamics Mission Systems played a key role in the moon rocket.(NASA/Arizona's Family)
Published: Aug. 26, 2022 at 7:51 PM MST
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SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — NASA hopes to send a rocket to the moon next week, and a Scottsdale company played a vital role in the mission. The General Dynamics Mission Systems produced two S-Band Transponders on the Orion spacecraft, allowing it to communicate through NASA’s networks and other spacecraft outside the Earth. The 30-story Space Launch System rocket and attached Orion capsule will have three mannequins inside but no astronauts as part of the Artemis I mission. However, General Dynamics Mission Systems is hopeful when the rockets do have crews, they’ll be using the transponders for redundancy and an emergency radio built by its Space and Intelligence Systems team. “General Dynamics’ technology provided a crucial communication link on humankind’s first trip to the moon, and on every NASA deep space probe and every Mars rover and lander,” says Manny Mora, vice president and general manager of Space & Intelligence Systems.

NASA hopes to launch as early as Aug. 29. There are also two launch dates in early September before NASA would have to stand down for two weeks. Then, if Orion’s trip to the moon and back goes well, astronauts could climb aboard in 2023 for a lunar loop-around and land in 2025.