tech track papers

Categories: 2017, Big Ideas and Architectures

Commercial Support for Civil Space Agencies and Organizations CubeSat Activities

NASA, and other U.S. government space civil agencies, have long been a great supporter of Cubesat activities, especially within academic and emerging space communities.  Over the past several years, these civil space agencies and organizations have provided funding for emerging space projects and also access to space.  The result of this support is civil space agencies and organizations have served as incubators of new technologies and new businesses.

The Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) has had a connection with civil space agencies dating dates back to 1996.  Most notably the these agencies included NASA, ESA, and NOAA.  In fact, SSC’s U.S. legal entity, SSC Space U.S., was founded by NASA Astronaut Pete Conrad, the third man on the moon.  This U.S. business was originally called Universal Space Network and it continues to provide ground network services to NASA’s Near Earth Network (NEN) and other civil agencies.

This paper will explore how commercial companies, like SSC, can continue to support civil space agency endeavors, specifically in their Cubesat activities.  Earlier in 2016, SSC announced a new service, SSC Infinity, that is specifically designed for cubesat and smallsat spacecraft.  SSC has also made great strides in 2016 towards creating Europe’s first dedicated smallsat launch capability, called SmallSat Express.  The SmallSat Express’ first launch is projected for 2021. The launch capability is designed for sun synchronous orbits and with smallsat payloads of 1 to 200 Kg.  This smallsat payload range (1 to 200 kg) range would serve, for example, NASA very well.  In November 2016, NASA announced a new series of individual missions to examine hurricanes, the Earth’s energy budget, the effect of aerosols and weather, all using a new method of data acquisition.

Providing civil space agencies with additional capabilities specifically tailored for cubesat initiatives could free up resources for other missions.


Author: Jennifer Blasko
Topic: Big Ideas and Architectures

  • Commercial Support for Civil Space Agencies and Organizations CubeSat Activities

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