Kratos Successfully Static Test Fires the Zeus 1 Solid Prope
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This news is classified in: Defense Missiles / Rockets Hypersonic Weapons

Jun 21, 2023

Kratos Successfully Static Test Fires the Zeus 1 Solid Propellant Rocket Motor at Aerojet Rocketdyne's Camden, Arkansas

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq: KTOS), a Technology Company in the Defense, National Security and Global Markets, announced today that its Space & Missile Defense Systems Business Unit (SMDS), a part of Kratos’ Defense & Rocket Systems Division (KDRS), successfully conducted the first static test firing of the Zeus 1 solid rocket motor (SRM) at Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Camden, Arkansas facility. Kratos, responding to the need for new affordable commercial SRMs to operate as launch vehicle stages for Kratos’ research, hypersonic, ballistic missile target, and “other” vehicles, determined Zeus 1 and 2 motor requirements and standards, and through internal investments, funded the development of the Zeus SRM designs. The family of Zeus SRMs are designed and manufactured by Kratos’ key merchant supplier partner Aerojet Rocketdyne.

Prior to firing, the Kratos Zeus 1 motor was cooled to the lowest planned operating temperature to evaluate motor performance under the most stressing ignition conditions. The Kratos Zeus 1 motor performed nominally throughout the test and preliminary hardware and data inspection confirms the robustness of the motor design and its applicability for multiple customer applications. The Kratos Zeus 1 performance provides substantial improvement over similar legacy and heritage SRMs within the same relevant form factor, allowing existing payload designs and launch infrastructure to remain unchanged, while allowing rapid integration of new, technology leading systems and payloads, including those currently under development by Kratos. These key and other attributes will provide Kratos’ customers opportunities to fly more often, faster and farther, using fewer stages, at a substantially reduced cost.

The Kratos Zeus 1 is the first of two high-performance 32.5-inch diameter solid rocket motors internally developed and funded under the Kratos Zeus Program, with the larger Zeus 2 motor scheduled for static test later this year. The Kratos Zeus motors, designed with versatility and affordability in mind, complement Kratos’ investments in the Erinyes hypersonic “flyer” test vehicle that is expected to debut early next year, and Kratos’ follow-on Dark Fury hypersonic system, which nature and performance characteristics are highly confidential. These Kratos investments in the hypersonic and “other” areas create a versatile family of test, evaluation and “other” products that offer complete systems, SRMs, and flyers. Once complete, Kratos, with the Zeus SRMs, and the Erinyes, Dark Fury, and other Kratos “Flyers”, will be one of the only companies with both the Rocket System and “Flyer” systems under one entity, providing unmatched innovation, disruptive capabilities, mission responsiveness and affordability to the customer.

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Dave Carter, President of KDRS, said, “I could not be more proud of our SMDS team and partner, Aerojet Rocketdyne, with this most recent example of our industry leading capability to rapidly design, develop, demonstrate, and bring to market affordable, relevant rocket systems, far ahead of competition. Kratos and our key rocket motor merchant supplier partner, Aerojet Rocketdyne, have demonstrated once again the value of the agile, middle tier technology and product companies for our country’s National Security requirements and system affordability.”

Eric DeMarco, President & CEO of Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, said, “Kratos internally funded the development of the Zeus motors to enable rapid and affordable hypersonic testing and capabilities and to be 'first to market' with a highly relevant system, including as based on communications with the customer community. At Kratos, affordability is a technology and better is the enemy of good enough, and we continue to innovate using proven, existing, leading technology, systems, and Kratos’ intellectual property to rapidly bring relevant products to market to address the United States and our Allies' National Security.”

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions
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