Missile-Tracking Satellites Undergo Tests

Defense contractor Lockheed Martin said last week it is is subjecting the second geosynchronous satellite of the planned U.S. Space-Based Infrared System to a battery of tests aimed at establishing a performance standard for the device's prelaunch environmental examination (see GSN, Aug. 21).

Once the Baseline Integrated System Test is complete, the GEO-2 satellite is set to be outfitted with "equipment panels and communications antennas in the flight configuration for environmental testing, where the integrated spacecraft will be subjected to acoustic and thermal vacuum levels expected during launch and on-orbit operations," the company said in a statement.

The GEO-2 satellite is slated for launch in fiscal 2012, according to the press release (see GSN, May, 2, 2008).

The GEO-1 satellite has entered the thermal vacuum testing and has been subjected to several "hot and cold temperature cycles" intended to simulate orbital conditions. After the environmental testing is complete, the GEO-1 satellite is expected to undergo a last examination before it is delivered late next year for launch.

The Space-Based Infrared System is expected to provide missile early warning and defense capabilities for the United States (Lockheed Martin release, Oct. 29).

November 4, 2009
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Defense contractor Lockheed Martin said last week it is is subjecting the second geosynchronous satellite of the planned U.S. Space-Based Infrared System to a battery of tests aimed at establishing a performance standard for the device's prelaunch environmental examination (see GSN, Aug. 21).