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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Enabling Technology for Small Satellite Launch

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Enabling Technology for Small Satellite Launch
Access to space for Small Satellites is enabled by the use of excess launch capacity on existing launch vehicles. A range of sizes, form factors and masses of small sats need to be accommodated. An integration process that minimizes programmatic/technical risk to the primary, allows "late flow" integration and predictable cost/schedule for the secondary enables regular and cost-effective access. The integration process proceeds smoothly when the right adapter accommodates the secondary in a seamless way. Design_Net, with our commercialization partner SpaceAvailable Inc. has designed a family of adapters that meet these criteria and one has been selected by NASA to complete development for targeted NASA rideshare opportunities. We are also currently working with United Launch Alliance (ULA) for a broader class of rideshare accommodations, and development of interfaces that allow late access on Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicles (EELV)s. Design_Net will continue, via this SBIR Phase 2, to develop the selected adapter to a structurally tested engineering model. This adapter can accommodate everything from 6u and 12u carriers to full up "ORS class" (800lb) small satellites and is applicable to Minotaur IV, Falcon 9 and Taurus 2. More »

Anticipated Benefits

Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

Technology Transitions

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.