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C/NOFS Satellite Built By General Dynamics Successfully Launched From Reagan Test Site

File image.
by Staff Writers
Gilbert AZ (SPX) Apr 17, 2008
The Communication/Navigation Outage Forecasting System (C/NOFS) satellite, designed and built by General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, was successfully launched today from the U.S. Army's Reagan Test Site in the Kwajalein Atoll, Republic of the Marshall Islands.

C/NOFS is a Department of Defense (DOD) Space Test Program and Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) mission that will forecast outages in DOD satellite communication links caused by ionospheric irregularities.

General Dynamics was the prime contractor responsible for the design, development, payload and system integration, test and launch of the satellite. Assembly of the spacecraft and payload integration took place at its space systems factory in Gilbert, Arizona.

General Dynamics worked with the AFRL to incorporate the six payloads into a fully functional space satellite. Orbital Sciences Corp. was the mission launch provider using its Pegasus launch service.

The satellite communication and navigation systems used by the Air Force and other DOD agencies are susceptible to outages due to ionospheric disturbances (scintillations) in the Earth's equatorial region. C/NOFS is designed to help predict these scintillations.

C/NOFS is the first-ever satellite system to forecast the potential degradation of satellite communication, navigation and surveillance systems due to ionospheric scintillations.

related report
Orbital Successfully Launches Pegasus Rocket Carrying USAF's C/NOFS Satellite
Orbital Sciences announced today that its Pegasus space launch vehicle successfully launched the U.S. Air Force's Communications/Navigation Outage Forecasting System (C/NOFS) satellite into its intended low-Earth orbit. The mission was the 25th consecutive successful mission for the Pegasus program since 1997 and the 39th overall flight of the company's air-launched system since its introduction in 1990.

"Pegasus continues to prove that it is the most reliable and versatile small launcher in the world today, with another successful mission supporting an important Air Force program," said Mr. Ron Grabe, Orbital's Executive Vice President and General Manager of its Launch Systems Group.

"Orbital-developed launch vehicles continue to demonstrate their value to our customers in the military, civil government and commercial markets with highly reliable and available launch services at reasonable prices."

The Pegasus/C/NOFS mission took place earlier today, originating from the Reagan Test Site, Kwajalein, Marshall Islands in the mid-Pacific Ocean. Following a one-hour long preplanned positioning flight, the Pegasus rocket was released from Orbital's L-1011 carrier aircraft at approximately 1:00 p.m. (EDT).

The C/NOFS satellite, which weighed approximately 870 lbs. (395 kg.) at launch, was accurately deployed into its targeted elliptical orbit of 205 x 385 nautical miles (400 x 850 km.) after an 8-minute powered flight sequence. Due to its launch from the near-equatorial Reagan Test Site, the satellite's orbit is at a low inclination of 13 degrees to the equator.

The C/NOFS satellite is a joint project of the U.S. Air Force's Space and Missile Center's Space Development and Test Wing and the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate, both of which are based at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, NM. General Dynamics designed and built the satellite and Orbital provided the launch services.

Related Links
General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems
Launch Pad at Space-Travel.com



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First ICO Bird Soars As Atlas V Lofts Its Heavist Load Yet
Cape Canaveral FL (SPX) Apr 15, 2008
A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket successfully launched the ICO-G1 satellite at 4:12 p.m. EDT, today. Blasting off from Space Launch Complex 41 here, it marked the first ULA commercial launch of an Atlas V vehicle procured by Lockheed Martin Commercial Launch Services. The ICO-G1 satellite is also the heaviest satellite launched to date by an Atlas V, weighing 6,634 kg or 14,625 lbm when fueled.







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