Friday, January 9, 2015

Bally Ribbon Mills Tour

I am always proud of the contribution small businesses make to NASA’s Mission. Today NASA’s Administrator, Mr. Charlie Bolden, the Associate Administrator for the Space Technology Mission Directorate, Dr. Michael Gazarik and I toured Bally Ribbon Mills (BRM) in Bally, Pennsylvania to gain insight on the production of the advanced Woven Thermal Protection System (Woven TPS). NASA envisions the great potential for BRM’s advanced woven thermal protection systems on the Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), Orion spacecraft mission, currently scheduled for 2018.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, BRM President Ray Harries and I.

BRM, a successful Small Business Innovation Research Phase III company has been a valuable partner to the agency and is using unique thermal protective materials to help develop a safe way for astronauts to travel into deep space and ultimately Mars. 

Ms. Pamela Ream, a BRM Harness Maker and Filler demonstrating the hand weaving process.

Mr. Ray Harries, President of BRM, led the tour and what I found particularly fascinating was seeing the advance Woven TPS process and the 3-D Multifunctional Ablative TPS for Orion. It was inspiring to see innovative technology firsthand that stem from game-changing small businesses. NASA is proud to be associated with these high-tech small businesses that are essential for us to complete our various missions.

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