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Spacecraft, Launch Vehicles & Satellites
 
USAF SHIFTS FOCUS TO DEVELOPMENT OF NEW SATELLITE COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEM
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Click image for a larger picture

Artist's rendition of a WGS satellite

Source: Boeing


Artist's rendition of a WGS satellite

Source: Boeing


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NEWTOWN, Conn. - With demand for bandwidth continuing to grow, the Air Force will take delivery of a total of 10 WGS satellites. All six of the originally planned WGS satellites have been paid for and are operational. The seventh satellite is also in orbit. Three more satellites will be delivered by 2019.

The Air Force has had success gathering other countries to participate in the program. Australia has contributed funds to WGS-6, while Canada, Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and New Zealand have all contributed funds toward WGS-9. In return, all of these countries will gain access to capacity from the entire system. There is some talk that the Air Force will put WGS-9 and WGS-10 into storage until a later date. However, due to support from other countries, continuing need for satellite bandwidth, and Congressional support for the WGS program, the two satellites in question are expected to be launched as planned.

As the WGS program moves toward completion, the Air Force has begun to shift its focus towards the development of a new system. Launches of WGS satellites began in 2007, meaning replacements will be needed starting in the early 2020s. The Air Force has also expressed interest in launching a three-satellite constellation to supplement WGS satellites to meet the Pentagon's ever-increasing need for bandwidth.

Source:  Forecast International
Associated URL: www.forecastinternational.com
Source Date: August 25, 2016
Author: B. Ostrove, Analyst 
Posted: 08/25/2016

 
 
ARIANE 5 LIFTS OFF ON FOURTH LAUNCH OF THE YEAR
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Click image for a larger picture

An Ariane 5 lifting off

Source: ESA/CNES/Arianespace


An Ariane 5 lifting off

Source: ESA/CNES/Arianespace


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KOUROU, French Guiana - An Ariane 5, operated by Arianespace, has delivered two telecom satellites, Intelsat-33e and Intelsat-36, into their planned orbits. Liftoff of flight VA232 occurred on August 24 at 7:16 p.m. local time (10:16 p.m. UTC; 6:16 p.m. EDT) from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

Intelsat-33e, with a mass at liftoff of 6,600 kg and mounted in the upper position atop Ariane’s Sylda dual-payload carrier inside the fairing, was the first to be released about 28 minutes into the mission.

Following a series of burns controlled by Ariane’s onboard computer, the Sylda structure encasing the 3,253 kg Intelsat-36 was then jettisoned. Intelsat-36 was released into its own transfer orbit about 13 minutes after the first satellite.

The payload mass for this launch was 10,735 kg. The satellites totaled about 9,853 kg, with payload adapters and carrying structures making up the rest.

The Ariane 5 is one of the primary launch vehicles for commercial geosynchronous communications satellites. Despite its strong position in the market, the Ariane 5 faces new competition that could threaten its standing. In response to new competition, Europe will introduce a new launch vehicle, dubbed the Ariane 6, which will be produced more efficiently and will be cheaper for customers. Until the Ariane 6 enters the market, the Ariane 5 will continue to play a dominant role in the launch industry.

Source:  ESA
Associated URL: http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Launchers/Ariane_5_s_fourth_launch_this_year
Source Date: August 25, 2016
Author: B. Ostrove, Analyst 
Posted: 08/25/2016

 
 
CASG DELIVERS LEADING EDGE BATTLE-SPACE AWARENESS TO AIR FORCE
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Click image for a larger picture

Source: Australia DoD


Source: Australia DoD


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RAAF BASE EDINBURGH, South Australia - Australia's Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group (CASG) has delivered a significant capability to provide enhanced force protection and battle-space awareness to the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and its coalition partners.

The sensitive Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR) consists of an Australian Mission Processor, which utilizes United States Air Force-derived space-based infrared satellite data that detects infrared events in Australia’s area of interest.

CASG’s Wide Area & Space Surveillance Systems Program Office (WASS SPO), working with the Defence Space Coordinating Office (DSCO), developed, procured and integrated a mission system capable of processing OPIR data from US satellites as part of Joint Project (JP) 2057 Phase 3.

JP 2057 Phase 3 Project Manager, Squadron Leader (SQNLDR) David Woerner, explained that the project continues a long standing Australian cooperative participation with the US OPIR community.

"The project first began as a capability demonstrator for Air Force’s Number One Remote Sensor Unit (1RSU) and the Defence Science and Technology Group in Phase One, before progressing to an interim operational capability in Phase Two," SQNLDR Woerner said.

"Phase Three then produced the full operational system, allowing the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) to interpret, analyze and disseminate infrared events in real time to the Australian war fighter."

SQNLDR Woerner said that the relationship built between Australia and the US within the OPIR community over the years had been highly beneficial as it had facilitated access to the US developed OPIR capability.

"It has been exciting to work with Australia’s coalition partners on this cutting edge technology," he said.

The OPIR capability will be operated by 1RSU at RAAF Base Edinburgh and the capability overseen by the Capability Manager at the DSCO in Air Force Headquarters.

Source:  Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group
Associated URL: defence.gov.au/dmo/
Source Date: August 25, 2016
Posted: 08/25/2016

 

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