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AFRL, AIAA Talk About Changes of Former’s Rocket Lab; Shawn Phillips Quoted

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Shawn Phillips
Shawn Phillips Chief AFRL Rocket Propulsion

Air Force Research Laboratory and the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics met to discuss changes that AFRL's Rocket Lab has undergone in terms of site use, in-space propulsion and space access.

Representatives from the two organizations met virtually from Tuesday to Wednesday under the chairmanship of Ray Flores, deputy director for Air Force Materiel Command's Office of the Inspector General, AFRL said Wednesday.

AFRL Rocket Lab has changed its business model to more actively address the military's technology needs. The laboratory has also expanded its capacity to 90 percent via public private partnerships across decades.

Shawn Phillips, chief of AFRL's rocket propulsion division, said the laboratory and AIAA collaborate to identify PPP opportunities and understand issues faced by aerospace and defense communities. The division has been working on hypersonic technologies for almost 70 years.

Ernest Wu, CEO of engineering company ERC, and Suren Singhal, deputy manager at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center's Office of the Chief Engineer, helped AFRL and AIAA set up the virtual meeting.