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Re: SEA Launch

On 27 Mar 1999, Tovar wrote:

>     <<SNIP from MSNBC >>
>     That is the point from which the Sea Launch joint venture plans to propel
>     a three-stage, Russian- and Ukrainian-built Zenit 3SL rocket into space. On
>     board will be a 10,000-pound "dummy" payload built to resemble the
>     commercial telecommunications satellites that Sea Launch hopes to routinely
>     ferry into orbit. 
>     << END SNIPPAGE >>
>     Why is P3D not on board?
>     Was Boeing approached/asked if we could tag along onboard?
> Or perhaps another, lesser-valued amateur satellite that we could afford to
> risk on an unproven launch vehicle?
> 				-- KD6PAG
Evidently, even though Sea Launch is run (in part) by Boeing, it is
considered to be a "foreign" launcher, due to the launch hardware
coming from Russia and the Ukraine, plus it's being launched in
international waters. Therefore, it falls under the laws governing
satellite exports, which have undergone a major change in the last
year. The change makes it very much harder to get a license to have
any "made in the USA" satellite launched by a non-US satellite, and
given Phase 3D's present location nad the amount of US-made hardware
in it, it qualifies as such (the law says the any satellite with more
than 25% US-made content, but I think that can be lowered if there
are certain "sensitive" technologies involved).
 The State Department has the final say (in consultation with mainly
the DoD) over who gets a license, and read an article recently that
they have something like a quarter of the people they need to handle
the review process that Congress now requires of them....and, oh, yeah,
Congress didn't give them any money to hire the extra people.....
 Bottom line, if it ain't got a US flag drapped over it, better not
hold your breath waiting to launch on it.

Andy Reynolds

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