Astrotech on Tap To Ready RBSP Spacecraft for Launch

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Astrotech Corp. said Oct. 14 that it has been awarded a $2.2 million task order by NASA to support the September 2012 launch of the Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) mission.

The Austin, Texas-based company received a $9.5 million indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract from NASA to provide spacecraft payload processing services for agency launches.

The RBSP mission consists of twin, spin-stabilized spacecraft built by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md., that are designed to study the field of charged particles around the Earth that pose a danger to spacecraft electronics and astronaut safety. The spacecraft are slated to launch as a pair from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket.