NASA’s New Millennium Program has selected two
organizations to lead the work on sensor and thrust-producing
technologies to control a space vehicle’s flight path so the
payload responds only to gravitational forces.

The Disturbance Reduction System technology is scheduled to
fly in 2006 as the Space Technology 7 project. Space
Technology 7 is designed to test and validate advanced
technologies for future use on NASA missions that have never
been flown in space.

The total NASA funding for Space Technology 7 is $62.6
million. The technology providers are Stanford University,
Stanford, Calif., and Busek Company Inc., Natick, Mass.
Stanford University will provide a highly sensitive
gravitational reference sensor that will measure the position
of a spacecraft with respect to an internal free-floating
mass. The Busek Company will provide a set of miniature ion
thrusters capable of controlling spacecraft position with
extremely fine precision.

“The Disturbance Reduction System is a promising new
technology that will pave the way for future space
observations of gravitational waves, giving us a whole new
eye on the universe,” said Anne Kinney, Director of the
Astronomy and Physics Division, Office of Space Science, NASA

The New Millennium Program was created in 1994 to identify,
develop and flight-validate advanced technologies that can
lower costs and enable critical performance of science
missions in the 21st century. The program is managed by the
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., for NASA’s
Office of Earth Science and Office of Space Science,
Washington, D.C. JPL is a division of the California
Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

More information on New Millennium is available at: