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Composite Cryotank

The Composite Cryogenic Technology and Demonstration (CCTD) project, led by MSFC, is developing light-weight propellant storage tanks out of composite materials. Current state-of-the-art launch and in-space propellant pressure vessels are typically manufactured with aluminum/aluminum-lithium. Progress in these metallic systems and their manufacturing has matured to the extent that significant challenges must be overcome to further reduce the weight of launch vehicle structures. The CCTD project is completing ground testing of a precursor sub-scale 2.4m diameter composite cryogenic propellant tank, and is set to complete manufacturing and testing of a 5.5m diameter tank in FY14. The manufacturing of 5.5m tank will use an out-of-autoclave process, while testing will include performance loads and environmental conditioning.