Space

March 28, 2014

Orbital beings production of 81 satellites

Orbital Sciences Corporation, one of the worldís leading space technology companies, announced March 27 that it has started production of 81 satellites for the Iridium NEXT program as part of a contract between Orbital and Iridiumís prime contractor, French-Italian aerospace company Thales Alenia Space.

Orbital will complete the assembly, integration, test and launch support phases for this second-generation global communications satellite constellation at its satellite manufacturing facility in Gilbert, Ariz.

The commencement of production also signifies the opening of a Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) at the Gilbert facility, which allows Orbital to reduce program costs by importing foreign-sourced hardware from Thales Alenia Space.

Ten years ago, this factory was created with large scale production in mind, said Jason Yocum, Orbitalís Senior Program Director for the Iridium NEXT production program. Today, at the Gilbert facility, we produce cutting-edge satellites that are executed with the highest degree of excellence and professionalism. As always, we appreciate the support we have received from the Town of Gilbert as we begin to use this unique facility for its intended purpose ñ as an international high-rate satellite production factory.

Orbital worked closely with the Town of Gilbert to develop the new FTZ, enabling the company to develop a highly efficient satellite production line. Orbital will integrate a total of 81 satellites for the constellation, including 66 low-Earth orbit operational satellites, six in-orbit spares, and nine ground-backup spacecraft, over the next three years. Orbitalís responsibilities also include ground support equipment, primary and hosted payload integration, shipment and launch integration services.

We thank Orbital for their partnership and cooperation in creating Gilbertís first Foreign Trade Zone, said John Lewis, Mayor of Gilbert, Ariz. It takes a tremendous amount of effort to prepare for a project of this magnitude and we are excited for this international effort to be happening here in Gilbert.

Scheduled to begin launching in 2015, Iridium NEXT will fully replace Iridiumís current satellite constellation of 66 cross-linked low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites that cover 100 percent of the globe. It will dramatically enhance Iridiumís ability to meet the rapidly-expanding demand for truly global mobile communications on land, at sea and in the skies.

Over the past three years, our teams have been working diligently to produce the best-designed satellite and to validate that design in preparation for production, said Scott Smith, Chief Operating Officer, Iridium Communications Inc. Team members from all over the world have been working together to challenge the processes, build hardware for validation testing and work to make this process as efficient as possible. All of this hard work has paid off and we look forward to a steady production of high quality satellites for our new network from this facility.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

President proclaims Memorial Day as ‘Day of Prayer’

President Barack Obama May 22 saluted the service and sacrifices of America’s military members–past and present–and proclaimed Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, “as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11 a.m. of that day as a time during which people may unite in prayer....
 
 

Air Force leaders’ Memorial Day message

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III send the following Memorial Day message to the Airmen of the Air Force and their families: To the Airmen of the United States Air Force and their Families: On Memorial Day, Americans pause in solemn remembrance...
 
 

Headlines May 22, 2015

News: Second Marine killed in Hawaii Osprey crash identified - Marine Corps officials have identified the second Marine to die as a result of the May 17 MV-22B Osprey crash as Lance Cpl. Matthew J. Determan of Maricopa, Ariz.   Business: Israel defense exports plunge to seven-year low - Israeli defense sales last year plunged to their...
 

 

News Briefs May 22, 2015

Ukrainian officer hit with third charge in Russia A third charge has been filed against a Ukrainian military officer who has been behind bars in Moscow for nearly a year over the deaths of two Russian journalists in Ukraine. Nadezhda Savchenko, who worked as a spotter for Ukrainian troops fighting separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine,...
 
 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>