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Thiokol sealing band

Thiokol (variously Thiokol Chemical Corporation, Morton-Thiokol Inc., Cordant Technologies Inc., Thiokol Propulsion, AIC Group, ATK Thiokol; finally ATK Launch Systems Group before becoming part of Orbital ATK) was an American corporation concerned initially with rubber and related chemicals, and later with rocket and missile propulsion systems. Its name is a portmanteau of the Greek words for sulfur (θειον «theion») and glue (κολλα «kolla»), an allusion to the company’s initial product, Thiokol polymer.

The Thiokol Chemical Company was founded in 1929. Its initial business was a range of synthetic rubber and polymer sealants, and Thiokol was a major supplier of liquid polymer sealants during World War II. When scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory discovered that Thiokol’s polymers made ideal binders for solid rocket fuels, Thiokol moved into the new field, opening laboratories at Elkton, Maryland, and later production facilities at Elkton and at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama. Huntsville produced the XM33 Pollux, TX-18 Falcon, and TX-135 Nike-Zeus systems. It closed in 1996. In the mid-1950s the company bought extensive lands in Utah for its rocket test range, and in 1986 was found at fault for the destruction of the Space Shuttle Challenger and the deaths of its astronauts. Thiokol continues to have major operations in the state, at Magna and Promontory (manufacture of the Space Shuttle’s solid rocket motors), and its current headquarters at Brigham City. As of 2005 the company employed over 15,000 people worldwide and records annual sales of around US$ 840 million.

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Moscow

8 (495) 790-14-52
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Saint Petersburg

8 (812) 318-12-75
8 (812) 318-12-74