MSL Curiosity Rover

The Mars Science Laboratory demonstrated the first use of a "soft landing" technique called the Sky Crane maneuver with the MSL Curiosity Rover on August 5, 2012. Moog technology had an important part in ensuring that the “seven minutes of terror “ ended in a smooth landing for Curiosity.

Cavitating Venturi Valves

The throttle valve assembly (TVA) was developed in conjunction with JPL and Aerojet Rocketdyne to support the descent phase of the MSL. The TVA has the ability to continuously and accurately throttle propellant flow from 1% to 100% through a varied duty cycle while maintaining stable flow, despite rapid fluctuations in engine backpressure. Within the TVA, the valve position is precision controlled by a Moog designed electromechanical actuator which is tethered to the control pintle of the valve. The TVA used in the MSL descent engine regulates flow from 0.033 to 3.3 lb/sec (hydrazine) and can achieve full stroke within 70 milliseconds after application of command.