The U.S. Federal Communications Commission on Dec. 5 okayed the first part of a satellite-servicing mission Orbital ATK’s Space Logistic subsidiary has with Intelsat, saying the servicing vehicle can execute “rendezvous, proximity operations, and docking with the Intelsat-901” satellite while in a graveyard orbit.
The forward-leaning technology arm of the U.S. Defense Department is betting that in just a few years, the business of sending robots to high orbit to repair and refresh satellites will be so successful that the government and the industry should now begin to discuss rules and protocols.
An appropriations bill approved by a Senate committee July 27 would restore funding for several NASA Earth science missions slated for termination by the administration as well as a satellite servicing program.
When orders for geostationary satellites are down, it’s not only the well-known satellite manufacturers that suffer — so do their suppliers.
A judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Orbital ATK seeking to stop work on a DARPA satellite servicing program, concluding the company’s claims had no basis in federal law.
It also announced a first customer for that satellite servicing system, with satellite operator SES entering into an agreement for an initial life extension mission with options for future missions.
DARPA program is an opportunity for the Pentagon to let industry lead experimental technology rather than try to adhere to strict requirements guidelines.
Space Systems Loral announced April 12 that it has completed an agreement with DARPA for a satellite servicing program that triggered a lawsuit from another company.
DARPA, undeterred by a lawsuit Orbital ATK filed on Tuesday, formally announced today that it will partner with Space Systems/Loral (SSL) on the Robotic Servicing of Geosynchronous Satellites (RSGS) program.
Orbital ATK sued the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency on Feb. 7 to prevent a rival firm from getting a contract to collaborate on a government-funded mission to repair a satellite in orbit.
The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is being asked to reconsider a satellite-servicing demonstration mission it plans to put under contract this year.
DARPA and NASA are announcing co-sponsorship of a privately led effort to leverage emerging government-developed best practices to develop non-binding industry consensus standards for safe robotic servicing by commercial servicers.
A new contract from NASA to build the agency’s Restore-L satellite servicing spacecraft could bring Space Systems Loral that much closer to launching its own satellite servicing business.
Satellite fleet operator Eutelsat on Oct. 11 said it had inaugurated its design-to-cost spending-reduction plan by ordering a direct-broadcast television satellite from Orbital ATK of the United States and Airbus Defence and Space of Europe.
The U.S. Defense Research Projects Agency plans to establish a consortium to discuss standards and practices for on-orbit satellite servicing as a corollary to Robotic Servicing of Geostationary Satellites (RSGS), an effort to develop robotic spacecraft to inspect, repair and move other satellites.
Satellite and rocket manufacturer Orbital ATK on Aug. 10 said global commercial satellite demand is weaker than the company had expected and would be a drag on its financial results in both 2016 and 2017.