Corning: award for space shuttle windows

Corning Incorporated has been awarded the NASA Space Flight Awareness Supplier Award by United Space Alliance. The award recognizes Corning“s Specialty Materials team in Canton, New York, for exceedi…

Corning Incorporated has been awarded the NASA Space Flight Awareness Supplier Award by United Space Alliance. The award recognizes Corning“s Specialty Materials team in Canton, New York, for exceeding exacting requirements to deliver two-inch and three-inch diameter external tank camera windows in support of NASA“s return-to-flight initiatives. Corning is only the sixth supplier to receive this award from United Space Alliance. Mike McCulley, president and chief executive officer, United Space Alliance, and STS-34 shuttle astronaut, presented the award to James Steiner, senior vice president and general manager, Corning Specialty Materials, during a ceremony at the Canton facility. “United Space Alliance is fortunate to have Corning as a strong and reliable supplier team,” said McCulley. “This award is one way we have of showing praise for what we consider the best of the best”. “We are honored to be recognized by United Space Alliance for our responsiveness to customer needs”, Steiner said. “Corning has been proud of its role in NASA initiatives from the first manned space flight to present-day missions. We look forward to continuing to supply high-performance specialty materials for mission-critical applications”. Camera windows allow NASA to monitor the shuttle“s underside for potential problems, such as de-lamination of insulating foam, during launch and flight. The windows are made from ultra-pure, fused silica that combines outstanding optical properties with a coefficient of thermal expansion necessary to withstand extreme temperature fluctuations. The Canton facility manufactured the original space shuttle windows in the mid-1970s and has been supporting flight operations with replacement thermal panes ever since.