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Re: Atlas 5 Test Flight

Dan -

The eventual need for an "SBS-like" for the US launch 
systems is a very good point.  The Atlas 5 (marketed by 
ILS) and the Delta 4 (marketed by Boeing/old McD) were 
developed as part of the Air Force EELV program.  

This may be the proper time to approach either the Air 
Force or the laucnher contractors directly about the 
potential development of an "SBS-like" structure for 
these 2 launcher systems (and maybe the SeaLaunch Zenit 
launcher also marketed by Boeing).

Points to consider:

1.) University of Surrey has developed mini-
satellites/mico-satellites for the Air Force and USA 
(and I believe the only non-US company listed in the 
NASA catalogue).  These satellites will be used for a 
variety of concept & functional demonstrations. 

2.)The TechSat 21 design concept being studied by the 
Air Force Research Laboratory (scheduled for 
demonstration in 2005) advocates the launching of 
a "cluster" of microsatellites weighing approximately 
300 pounds each.  The planned 2005 demo will launch 3 
satellites to test and verify if precision formation 
flying can be achieved (think AF Thunderbirds in 
space).. which would be desired for the specific design.

AMSAT has the previous experience with Arienespace in 
developing an SBS that serves as a workable platform for 
micro/mini-satellites.  AMSAT can leverage this 
expertise in increasing the flexibility of the current 
lauchers (e.g. current overcapacity) for larger varities 
of commercial and military payloads.  AMSAT could serves 
as a consultant or part of an overall design team. 

  Potential to have form factors specifications for 
micro and minisatellites standardized for any launcher 
(Ariene, Delta 4, Atlas 5) that an SBS is designed for
  Launcher flexibility for microsatellite builders based 
on availability / launch profile
  Potential to reduce per satellite costs through 
standardized structures/frames/buses (e.g. assembly 
line) - proved by Loral for Iridium development
  Continued movement from custom devlopment to "off-the-
shelf" assembly of components.  AMSAT & Univ. of Surrey 
have worked in this direction for past decade 
(Microsats, gravity gradient boom)


> So far as I know, the new models of the Atlas and Delta launch vehicles
> do not have secondary payload arrangements similar to the Ariane ASAP
> ring or the Specific Bearing Structure that Amsat developed for the
> Phase 3D launch and turned over to Arianespace. It is possible that we
> might be able to ask these companies if they would be interested in
> developing a secondary payload capability.
> The bottom line is that getting a launch requires us to earn the trust
> and respect of the launch authority. Amsat enjoys such a relationship
> with Ariane. So far we have not developed such a relationship with other
> launch vehicle owners. It might be possible to develop such a
> relationship but that will require delicate behind the scenes
> negotiations and "schmoozing".
> Dan Schultz N8FGV
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -----------------------
> >Date: Thu, 22 Aug 2002 11:48:27 +0000
> >From: "David A. Minster" <dminster@optonline.net>
> >Subject: Re: [amsat-bb] Atlas 5 Test Flight
> >So if I read this article correctly, there is absolutely no reason for
> >hearing that it will take years to get a ride into space for our
> upcoming
> >projects. In fact, the quotes are starting to sound like the airlines
> >describing the NY to DC shuttle flights - over capacity and few
> riders...
> >David, NA2AA
> >http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/2207633.stm
> ----
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