Session

Technical Session IX: From Earth To Orbit

SSC10-IX-8.pdf (314 kB)
Presentation Slides

Abstract

Commercial launch vehicles often launch with primary payloads that do not max-out launch capacity to the destination orbit. To take advantage of this excess capability, secondary payloads can be launched with the primary payload, providing an economical means to get small spacecraft to orbit, as well as providing additional revenue to the launch provider. Up until now, these secondary payload opportunities have been limited and sporadic, with payloads waiting for rides due to mismatched orbit destinations, availability of launch vehicle capacity, and prohibitive cost. With the advent of new U.S. commercial launch services, the opportunities for launch of small secondary spacecraft are expected to increase. Secondary payload customers can take full advantage of these opportunities with standard interfaces and processes to enable routine launch at competitive commercial prices. To provide routine low cost access to space, Spaceflight Services has partnered with SpaceX to provide secondary payload flight services on its Falcon 9 launches using available capacity or in Falcon 9 Dragon launches using volume in the Dragon Trunk. Spaceflight Services provides standard interfaces for a range of small spacecraft, ranging from CubeSat-class to ESPA-class payloads. This paper explores the effects of implementing standard payload accommodations and streamlined launch integration processes in establishing routine launch of secondary payloads at commercial prices.

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Aug 11th, 2:30 AM

Routine Scheduled Space Access For Secondary Payloads

Commercial launch vehicles often launch with primary payloads that do not max-out launch capacity to the destination orbit. To take advantage of this excess capability, secondary payloads can be launched with the primary payload, providing an economical means to get small spacecraft to orbit, as well as providing additional revenue to the launch provider. Up until now, these secondary payload opportunities have been limited and sporadic, with payloads waiting for rides due to mismatched orbit destinations, availability of launch vehicle capacity, and prohibitive cost. With the advent of new U.S. commercial launch services, the opportunities for launch of small secondary spacecraft are expected to increase. Secondary payload customers can take full advantage of these opportunities with standard interfaces and processes to enable routine launch at competitive commercial prices. To provide routine low cost access to space, Spaceflight Services has partnered with SpaceX to provide secondary payload flight services on its Falcon 9 launches using available capacity or in Falcon 9 Dragon launches using volume in the Dragon Trunk. Spaceflight Services provides standard interfaces for a range of small spacecraft, ranging from CubeSat-class to ESPA-class payloads. This paper explores the effects of implementing standard payload accommodations and streamlined launch integration processes in establishing routine launch of secondary payloads at commercial prices.