-4
$\begingroup$

I cant seem to understand how do get valves, tubes , bearings, o-rings or sensors for their rockets do they make them? Or from where do they get those?

$\endgroup$
5
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Digikey, McMaster-Carr, Mouser, Grainger, ... all sources of standard industrial components. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 21:02
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I'm pretty sure they simply do the work - searching for the various suppliers using the internet, ordering from multiple suppliers, checking the quality, etc. For more important items they'll send out a request for quotation to many suppliers, adding specific performance requirements and seeing which ones are willing to take the order seriously and stand behind their products. They may also request sales people to come to their site to discuss the supplier's product lines and the customers specific needs to see if they can build a relationship. It's hard word! $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 21:18
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Consider spending some time reading on the site to learn about writing good questions. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 25, 2023 at 23:57
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ conrad.de ...#nojoke $\endgroup$
    – CallMeTom
    Commented Oct 26, 2023 at 6:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @CallMeTom Lol, I even bought some things from Conrad $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 26, 2023 at 9:45

2 Answers 2

5
$\begingroup$

The comment by @uhoh sums up the basics of what happens. They do the work. Lots of it. There exists a large base of specialty manufacturers for very high quality and strictly controlled materials and assemblies. Companies that design/build/integrate aerospace vehicles develop and maintain relationships with these specialty suppliers.

Here is the context from which I offer my insights regarding sourcing of parts, materials, special assemblies for aerospace use. I'm a retired mechanical engineer. I've spent my career designing avionics (radios, power amplifiers, antenna system components, crypto equipment) for military and commercial aircraft.

I was with the organization that is now known as Collins Aerospace. I worked very closely and continuously with departments called AE (Application Engineering) and QE (Quality Engineering).

Application Engineering has a large number of part type engineering specialists, each of which focuses on a specific type of commodity like electrical connectors or high performance metals or sensors and encoders. These Application Engineers maintain a database of which companies provide parts or materials suitable for our products. I would go to an AE and say "I need a relay that does such and such" and the AE would go into their database and find vendor X (who is a 'qualified supplier' to us) makes just what I need. If something "new" is needed the AE works with Design Engineering (yours truly) and a suitable qualified specialty manufacturer to come up with a solution. Usually the solution can be as simple as a minor adjustment or modification to an existing product. Sometimes it can be 'take sensor A and put it into housing formfactor Z'. The same kind of thing happens with a materials AE.

Quality Engineering is comprised of a large group of specialists with several different areas of responsibility. In the context of procuring parts and materials QE is tasked with assuring through comprehensive audits and inspections that vendors are capable of providing the quality, consistency and integrity required. If a vendor is found lacking it can be disqualified and no parts can be bought from them. QE continues surveillance of part/material/vendor quality over the lifetime of its use. Quality Engineering is expensive to do but product failure can be unbelievably terrible.

Or... you could just go to the local hardware stores and see what is on their shelves this week.

$\endgroup$
0
$\begingroup$

Every rocket manufacturer goes through a build vs buy analysis on every single part in the rocket. Different manufacturers arrive at different results with regard to those analyses. Some prefer to build almost everything in-house, thereby eliminating perceived uncertainties due to time delays and quality issues from external suppliers. Others prefer to act more as rocket assemblers rather than rocket manufacturers and thus prefer purchasing from external providers over in-house building.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.