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Constellation Services International And Space Systems Loral Team On NASA COTS Proposal

by Staff Writers
Laguna Woods CA (SPX) Dec 14, 2007
Constellation Services International is collaborating with Space Systems Loral (SS/L) to pursue a funded Space Act Agreement with NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program. The two companies are working together, with SS/L as the prime, to produce a commercial cargo system to re-supply NASA's International Space Station (ISS), and to create new commercial space services and applications.

Charles Miller, CSI's Chief Executive Officer stated "CSI is pleased to announce that Space Systems/Loral has baselined our space transportation intermodal approach for the current COTS competition. We are very excited by this relationship". Bill Nations, SS/L Vice President added, "SS/L is the market leader in the GEO commercial satellite business and CSI has a unique, patented system for delivering cargo to the ISS. Together we bring NASA a flexible, low-cost solution based on highly reliable existing technology and a commercial business approach."

The SS/L version of CSI's LEO ExpressSM cargo system uses the SS/L 1300 satellite bus as a tug, while retaining most of the original intermodal spacetug advantages. SS/L is currently the world leader in commercial GEO comsats with 40% of the world market for satellites of 8 kW or higher. Forty-eight spacecraft based on the SS/L 1300 satellite bus are currently operating on orbit, four are awaiting launch and fourteen more are in production. SS/L has also produced 129 Orbital Replacement Units for the ISS to date, including Batteries, Battery Charge/Discharge Units and Sequential Shunt Units.

According to Miller, "Because of recent problems with generating private capital for ISS cargo servicing projects, the question on everybody's mind now is 'Can any company really raise all the money needed to complete a high-risk commercial space project in partnership with NASA?'" Miller continued "As a well-established company that is known for its technical and commercial excellence as well as its entrepreneurial approach, Lora l is probably better positioned to achieve the COTS goals than any other bidder in the competition."

SS/L publicly announced the details of its COTS proposal at the Space Investment Summit 3 on December 6th in San Jose, California. SS/L distributed a "SS/L COTS Fact Sheet" that summarized the SS/L COTS concept, and which can be found at Tom Moser, CSI's Vice President for Government Programs and a former NASA Space Station program director stated "Space Systems/Loral is trusted and respected in the commercial space industry, and has been involved in several successful NASA programs. SS/L provided eight GOES weather satellites and was awarded the Goddard Contractor Excellence Award in the process".

Moser continued "Tommy Holloway, another former NASA Space Station program manager, recently testified to Congress that 'If a proven logistics support system is not available, I would commit to the future capability that is determined by engineering analysis to have the highest chance of success'. Based on sound engineering and business analysis, SS/L probably has the highest chance of success among all of the current COTS competitors."

Constellation Services International, Inc. is an entrepreneurial orbital spaceflight services company that is focused on commercial opportunities in Earth orbit. CSI has raised over two million dollars in private investment, and has received over three million dollars from three NASA contracts to further develop the patented LEO ExpressSM Space Cargo System, including its role as prime contractor for the NASA Alternate Access to Space program (AAS). The LEO ExpressSM Space Cargo System completed a NASA System Design Review in July 2003. NASA's AAS program concluded "CSI provided convincing evidence that both designs were feasible."

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NASA Selects Prime Contractor For Ares I Rocket Avionics
Washington DC (SPX) Dec 13, 2007
NASA has selected The Boeing Company of Huntsville, Ala., as the prime contractor to produce, deliver and install avionics systems for the Ares I rocket that will launch the Orion crew exploration vehicle into orbit. The selection is the final major contract award for Ares I. The award resulted from a full and open competition.

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