Sept. 20,
2000–TRW has launched production of the Space
Applications Interface (SAI), a key
ground-to-space interface for the Astrolink global broadband telecom system.

The go-ahead follows the successful, on-schedule conclusion of the SAI’s
critical design review, or CDR, which verified that TRW’s SAI design meets
Astrolink’s requirements.

“SAI is the first major Astrolink element to complete CDR,” said Paul
Borzcik, vice president and program manager of TRW’s Astrolink program.
“We’ve gotten the green light to begin procuring hardware and developing
the software modules for integration, leading to system test and delivery of
the first SAI in 2001.”

Astrolink satellites will provide Internet, multimedia and data network
services to businesses and consumers beginning in 2003. TRW is developing
the digital-switching, bandwidth-on-demand communications payloads for the
Astrolink satellites. The SAIs, which TRW is building under a separate
contract to Astrolink International LLC, will function as part of
Astrolink’s four regional network control centers, providing the crucial
ground interface for controlling and managing the orbiting satellite

The CDR involved all major participants in Astrolink’s development including
Astrolink International; TRW; Lockheed Martin Global Telecommunications and
Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems; Telespazio S.p.A., a company of
the Telecom Italia Group, which is responsible for the ground segment;
COMSAT Laboratories; and Ericsson.

The CDR demonstrated that TRW’s design for the SAI meets all Astrolink
requirements. The reviewers examined in detail the myriad interfaces, both
hardware and software, that comprise the SAI.

TRW is also building the Astrolink payload emulator, a testbed that provides
ground system developers with a means of verifying ground-to-payload
interfaces well before the satellites go on orbit. Both the SAI and the
emulator will play a key role in integrating and validating the Astrolink
ground segment.

TRW Space & Electronics Group is the world leader in digital,
bandwidth-on-demand satellite payloads. TRW Inc. (NYSE:TRW – news) provides
advanced technology products and services for the global automotive,
aerospace, telecommunications and information systems markets. TRW news
releases and information about the company are available at


TRW Inc., Redondo Beach

Jack Prichett, 310/812-5227