Space and Satellite Testing Services

Space and Satellite Testing

LADEE Satellite Vibration Testing

Since its founding in 1961 NTS has been providing expert testing and analytical expertise to the space sector. The broad range of experience and vast technical expertise that we have gained during that time uniquely qualifies us to provide our commercial and public sector space and satellite client base with a wide range of services tailored to meet their specific needs. We provide expert engineering solutions as well as the insight necessary to address various regulatory, safety and service considerations early in the design process. NTS Subject Matter Experts render professional guidance and provide formal review services to avoid any potential problems or delays in your product development and release process.

Your dedicated team of NTS space and satellite test engineers, technicians and project managers will work side-by-side with your internal team to meet your full range of requirements in a timely, cost-effective and organized manner. Our extensive experience and physical infrastructure provides the platform required to properly address even the most challenging problems our clients face, from launch to recovery.

Space and Satellite Test Capabilities

Thermal Vacuum

For over 50 years NTS has been developing a broad portfolio of space service offerings designed to meet the myriad needs of the government and private sectors. From basic engineering and evaluation services to large scale project management, NTS is a leading provider of aerospace services and engineering solutions in this field. We have the technical expertise, the accreditations/clearances and physical infrastructure needed to meet the needs of our extensive customer base. NTS operates a national network of test laboratories and engineering centers, offering a vast array of technical capabilities to meet the needs of the commercial and governmental space industry. These laboratories are accredited by A2LA and NVLAP to a wide range of aerospace industry standards.

Our extensive range of aerospace service offerings include the following:

Space Shuttle Testing at NTS Huntsville

Astronautics and Propulsion Testing

NTS’s acquisition of Wyle Laboratories’ San Bernardino location has greatly expanded the propulsion testing services we offer aerospace clients. From there, we are able provide thrust stand and exhaust duct rocket testing with up to 50,000-lbf of thrust (8,000-lbf for side or asymmetric loads). NTS San Bernardino also offers general component and sub-system assembly, cryogenic fuel storage and more.

Satellite Systems and Other Large-Scale Programs

NTS is a recognized industry leader in satellite and space hardware testing. We have worked on nearly every major U.S. space project and partnered with leading contractors such as Boeing, Hamilton Sundstrand and Meggitt-PLC. We are able to provide research and development, testing and systems evaluations, and other aerospace services for a wide range of individual devices, components and systems used in satellites and other large-scale programs.

Precision Cleaning Services

Aerospace components, assemblies, systems and other parts all require precision cleaning to prevent oxidation, particle buildup and other issues that can potentially affect performance. NTS provides commercial oxygen cleaning, ultra-high purity processing, leak testing, particle and residue analyses, and many other services related to aerospace testing and maintenance. We can also provide specialty packaging that helps manage risk while storing and transporting sensitive components.

Supplier Inspection and Verification Services

Managing the complex global supply chains associated with the aerospace industry is just one of the additional services we offer our clients. We can provide random auditing to ensure your suppliers are meeting your standards for quality, helping you avoid recalls and reliability issues that eat into your profits and your reputation.

Aerospace-Specific Testing and Certifications

Testing and certification services for the aerospace industry have been a core component of our business for more than 50 years. Our facilities are certified to ISO/IEC 17025 standards by the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA). We offer complete turnkey compliance solutions for MIL-STD-810, RTCA DO-160 and MIL-STD-202 standards, and we can assist with pre-compliance management for the international market.

In addition to the various service categories listed above we also provide many other related services, as well as various other types of customer-defined engineering projects covering a broad range of specialized services. Please browse our website for more information about our full range of service offerings for testing and certifications, engineering services and supply chain management or contact us today to discuss your specific needs.

Space Service Centers

Southern California

Fullerton, CA

One of NTS’ most diverse facilities, this laboratory performs of a wide array of testing in the Environmental, EMI/EMC, Mechanical, Material, Dynamic, and Product Safety test disciplines. It has extensive assets and an equipment base that has continued to grow over the past forty years. Equipment includes numerous climatic chambers, electrodynamic shakers which include a UD T4000 and a UD T2000, drop towers and a 28-foot centrifuge.

Fullerton engineers and technicians are recognized experts in the performance of a wide array of environmental simulations including Thermal Shock, HALT, Salt Fog, Explosive Atmosphere, Dust Seismic/Earthquake, Sine/Random Vibration, Solar Radiation, Rapid Decompression, Simulated Pyro Shock and Windmilling.

Los Angeles, CA

CloudSAT Force Limited Vibration Test

NTS LAX is a leading satellite technology test center and precision cleaning provider. LAX offers a suite of environmental and dynamic testing and expertise and is able to support both commercial and military test programs. NTS can custom engineer chambers and fixtures to conduct a complete range of space related phenomena for fuel cells, solar panels, composite antennas, batteries and various mechanical and electronic devices.

LAX provides extensive precision cleaning for Component parts, assemblies, piping, pressure vessels, heat exchangers and an array of other space hardware. Other processes include pickle and passivation, deoxidation, cryogenic testing, helium leak testing, pressure testing, vacuum bake out, and an incredible number of ancillary specialized services. NTS has successfully partnered with NASA on such projects as the CloudSat Cloud Profiling Radar Antenna Subsystem for Force Limited Vibration testing, a method which was chosen to protect the lightweight design of the unit. Testing was successfully conducted in one week, with data acquired in real-time enabling the report to be ready at the conclusion of the test.

San Bernardino, CA

NTS San Bernardino is a rocket and high flow, high pressure fluid test facility located at the San Bernardino International Airport. We provide a full complement of test services ranging from Valves, Pumps, Cryogenic components, Flow control devices, Manifolds, Airborne & Structural Noise Testing, Couplers and more. This site is staffed with experienced personnel, a superior performance record and an excellent safety record. The facility is designed in accordance with API and ASME power piping codes and all pressure vessels are ASME coded and commissioned for use in the state of California.

This unique laboratory was built in partnership with the Air Force Research Laboratory at Edwards Air Force Base who provided funding for NTS to build a new small scale Rocket test facility under the JRETS (Jet and Rocket Test Facility) contract. Under that contract, the former assets of Wyle’s Norco facility were combined with government assets formerly located at the Rocketdyne Santa Suzanna test facility to form a world class fluids test center. NTS is currently supporting research and development on new supercritical CO2 combustion cycles as well as multiple Space Launch System programs.

Santa Clarita, CA

Mars Rover Testing

NTS Santa Clarita is one of the largest test facilities in the U.S., covering over 150 acres. Major test equipment include a 50-foot diameter centrifuge with over 200 slip ring channels, a 5000 cubic foot acoustic chamber and a 1500 cubic foot space simulation chamber. Vibration test facilities feature more than a dozen electrodynamic and hydraulic shaker systems with ratings of up to 70,000 force pounds. Climatic and Space Simulation provides for demanding test requirements with combined environments of temperature, altitude and humidity from -70°F to +350°F in chambers up to 28’ x 16’ x 15’. We provide pressure, temperature and flow capabilities to meet extreme testing environments with gas and liquids.

NTS Santa Clarita has supported NASA and other organizations on major programs including LADEE (shown below), Space Shuttle, MX Peacekeeper, THAAD, International Space Station, EELV and Mars Rover with services such as launch-level acoustics, climatic, environmental, space simulation, hazardous vibration and acceleration.

Huntsville, Alabama

NTS Huntsville, formerly Wyle Laboratories, is a 93 acre, 163,000 sq. ft. facility located, founded in 1962 to support the emerging Marshall Space Flight Center as it developed the Saturn Booster Program. Today the facility provides testing and engineering support services as well as the design of specialized test equipment and facilities. It also contains a “Hot Shop”/Radioactive Material License, world class high-flow steam and water capabilities and on-site engineering and failure analysis.

NTS Huntsville has provided extensive support to NASA, including flight qualifications testing on the Saturn 1B instrument unit and other extensive testing on the Saturn/Apollo programs. In 1985, as Wyle, the Huntsville team design, developed and activated a firing stand for Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster “Short Stack” for SRB O-Ring Design Requalification program.

Other US Space and Satellite Testing Locations

In addition to these space testing centers, NTS has facilities in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Florida, Illinois, Texas, Arizona, Michigan, Maryland, Indiana, Arkansas, Kansas and Virginia ready to provide a variety of environmental and dynamic simulations and analysis to help ensure the safety and security of space and satellite programs.