A Higher Standard for Space Testing

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A Higher Standard for Space Testing

Element U.S. Space & Defense is a leader in space testing, providing expert services for satellites, rockets, and spacecraft for civil, commercial, and military use. As a pioneer in space testing, Element U.S. Space & Defense has supported nearly every major space program since the inception of manned space exploration. From commercial Cubesats to the newest space exploration vehicles, we provide complete project transparency to help customers mitigate risk, reduce cost, and evaluate product launch readiness. With unrivaled technical knowledge and decades of experience in space testing, Element U.S. Space & Defense adheres to higher standard for ensuring program success. Key services include:

  • Space Simulation/Thermal Vacuum Cycling
  • Launch Vibration and Acoustics
  • Stage Separation Pyroshock
  • Satellite MIPS Shock
  • Cryogenic Vibration for Liquid Rocket Propulsion Components
  • Extreme Environmental Testing
  • Indirect Lightning
  • High Pressure, High Flow Pneumatic Tests at Temperature
  • Aerodynamic Heating for Simulated Hypersonic Flight
  • Advanced EMI/EMC Testing

Awarded with Prestigious Space Flight Award by NASA

As a trusted partner for space testing, Element U.S. Space & Defense, formerly NTS, worked with NASA to accelerate testing on the Space Launch System (SLS). According to NASA, the SLS is expected to be “the largest rocket” in history. To keep the program on schedule, our team of expert engineers worked seven days a week for several months, providing expert test services in the following areas:

LO2 and LH2 12” Prevalves

  • Vibration and pyrotechnic shock tests at -320 F
  • Functional tests with liquid nitrogen
  • Water flow testing at approximately 10,000 GPM

LO2 and LH2 Vent and Relief Valves

  • Vibration and pyrotechnic shock tests at -320 F
  • Functional tests with liquid nitrogen and liquid hydrogen

LH2 Fill and Drain Valve

  • Vibration and pyrotechnic shock tests at -320 F
  • Functional tests with liquid nitrogen and liquid hydrogen

Disconnect Assemblies

  • Vibration and pyrotechnic shock tests at -320 F
  • Functional tests with liquid nitrogen and liquid hydrogen

Fuel and Oxidizer Manifolds

  • Vibration and shock with combined full flow requirements using GN2 and GHe
  • Full functional tests with gaseous nitrogen and gaseous hydrogen

LH2 LO2 Feed line Assemblies

  • Dual shaker vibration tests at -320F with gaseous and liquid nitrogen utilizing specialized bearing and fixture techniques not previously used in the industry

During the qualification effort, Element U.S. Space & Defense worked directly with Boeing Company—and established a singular project management team to work with all of the laboratories. As a result of this effort, we were nominated by both Boeing Company and Lockheed Martin for the prestigious space award. According to Lockheed Martin, “The qualification and testing of hardware for human-rated space flight systems is unique and extensive; and is a critical step in delivering to NASA the safest and most reliable systems for human space exploration. At the at the Washington IAF conference in Washington D.C, NTS was awarded the NASA FSA award. It was the first time that this award has ever been given to an independent test laboratory.

Advancements in Satellite Testing

With advances in technology, the government and corporations alike rely on satellites. The U.S. military counts on satellites for navigation, communications and intelligence gathering. Meanwhile, companies use them for telecommunications and radio applications vital to our society. Satellite manufacturers must create a reliable product that supports these critical functions. Testing ensures that the final product will achieve its intended purpose while in Earth’s orbit.

During satellite testing, the professional conducting the test programs must consider every contingency. Once a satellite is in orbit, it must work at peak performance it will stay out of reach of repair. Since large-scale programs like satellites involve large amounts of money and effort, the manufacturer has much to lose from product failure.

Qualified organizations such as Element U.S. Space & Defense can conduct testing programs that leave no component unchecked. We have decades of experience working with sensitive satellite parts designed for critical programs. Our team understands how to simulate extreme space conditions while leaving equipment intact. At Element U.S. Space & Defense, we know that a satellite launch has no room for error.

Hypersonic Testing

Hypersonic flight, which involves projectiles racing at speeds above Mach 5, is a hot topic in defense and aerospace circles. In fact, the development of a hypersonic defense weapon system is critical to national security. At Element U.S. Space & Defense, engineers are creating different tests to simulate hypersonic flight, including aerodynamic heating—a simulation that involves burner temperatures up to 4,000 °F. 

Aerospace -Specific Testing and Certifications

The dedicated facilities at Element U.S. Space & Defense have more than 60 years of demonstrated results in aerospace testing. We have achieved certification according to the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA)’s ISO/IEC 17025 standards. Our team can provide comprehensive compliance services for MIL-STD-810, MIL-STD-202 and RTCA DO-160 standards.

MIL-STD-810 testing evaluates a product’s life cycle in the face of rugged environmental conditions. By replicating the effects of the product’s intended environment, the test allows for the collection of in-depth data. During MIL-STD-810 testing, the manufacturer determines the product’s reliability and compliance. Clients may choose from 28 MIL-STD-810 testing methods meant to replicate a range of conditions.

MIL-STD-202 testing examines a piece of equipment’s electrical parts that weigh under 300 pounds. It outlines the test protocols used for all components and products featuring printed circuit boards. The test methods featured in MIL-STD-202 involve environmental tests, physical characteristic tests and electrical characteristic tests.

RTCA DO-160 encompasses the procedures required for aircraft. These tests evaluate the performance of airborne equipment used in aerospace operations.


The Leader in Space Testing.