SACRAMENTO, Calif., Dec. 20, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A payload of six lithium-ion batteries, designed and developed by Aerojet Rocketdyne, Inc., a subsidiary of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:AJRD), has been delivered to the International Space Station to give astronauts the power they need to continue important research aboard the station. Once installed on the space station, the batteries will become part of the most sophisticated, high-power space Electrical Power System (EPS) on orbit today. Aerojet Rocketdyne made key contributions to the space station's EPS design, which includes the batteries, solar arrays and power distribution system.

"Efficient, reliable and safe electrical power systems are absolutely critical for the astronauts who live on the International Space Station. It's also important for the research they conduct to better understand life in space and here on Earth," said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President Eileen Drake. "It's a privilege to know our lithium-ion batteries are helping to make that possible."

The safety features incorporated into the lithium-ion batteries include voltage, temperature and cell-overcharge monitoring, making them a safe, reliable and efficient power source for the space station. The six lithium-ion batteries will replace 12 of the space station's nickel hydrogen (Ni-H2) batteries, and will provide a more efficient form of energy storage. They are designed to operate at least 10 years. Eighteen more Aerojet Rocketdyne lithium-ion batteries will be launched to the space station in 2018, 2019 and 2020.

Aerojet Rocketdyne built a total of 31 lithium-ion Orbital Replacement Units that include two engineering units, two qualification units and 27 flight units. Twenty-four of the Aerojet Rocketdyne lithium-ion batteries will replace all 48 existing Ni-H2 batteries, and will be installed on the EPS which supplies power to the space station. The batteries will result in nearly one-half of the launch mass and about 1.5 times more energy storage capability.

Aerojet Rocketdyne is an innovative company delivering solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense markets. The company is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets. Additional information about Aerojet Rocketdyne can be obtained by visiting our websites at and