Session

Session III: Mission Payload

SSC09-III-3.pdf (2106 kB)
Presentation Slides

Abstract

This paper describes the applications, benefits and customers for synthetic aperture radar (SAR) payloads carried on small low cost space missions. Although numerous current and soon-to-launch carry SAR, affordability of such missions to serve particular types of customers is poor. This is in part due to the high cost of SAR payloads, and specific needs such as high power drain and support for large, heavy antennae which have mandated large, costly satellites. The paper explores the trade-space between application, customer and performance to show how there is a market for a Disaster Monitoring Constellation class SAR, or DMC-SAR which can support a number of unmet needs in the Earth observation sector. A DMC-SAR mission is shown to be feasible, with various options for sourcing and mating the critical SAR instrument to a small low cost SSTL bus. A price of $50M for such a mission is justified from a bottom up system engineering perspective and a top-down business case driven approach. The value proposition offered by a constellation of DMC-SAR spacecraft is global imagery with a daily revisit, unaffected by weather , day / night operation, with a system robustness far in excess of a single large satellite, and at a price point that allows potential data sales revenue to more than offset the price of the system.

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Aug 11th, 9:15 AM

Affordable SAR Constellations to Support Homeland Security

This paper describes the applications, benefits and customers for synthetic aperture radar (SAR) payloads carried on small low cost space missions. Although numerous current and soon-to-launch carry SAR, affordability of such missions to serve particular types of customers is poor. This is in part due to the high cost of SAR payloads, and specific needs such as high power drain and support for large, heavy antennae which have mandated large, costly satellites. The paper explores the trade-space between application, customer and performance to show how there is a market for a Disaster Monitoring Constellation class SAR, or DMC-SAR which can support a number of unmet needs in the Earth observation sector. A DMC-SAR mission is shown to be feasible, with various options for sourcing and mating the critical SAR instrument to a small low cost SSTL bus. A price of $50M for such a mission is justified from a bottom up system engineering perspective and a top-down business case driven approach. The value proposition offered by a constellation of DMC-SAR spacecraft is global imagery with a daily revisit, unaffected by weather , day / night operation, with a system robustness far in excess of a single large satellite, and at a price point that allows potential data sales revenue to more than offset the price of the system.