Modular Space Vehicle from Northrop Grumman nearing end of manufacturing phaseNews
May 29, 2013
REDONDO BEACH, CA – A team led by Northrop Grumman Corp. team finished the third gate review of its first Modular Space Vehicle (MSV) bus assembly, test, and integration, which means functional testing is complete.
"Day in the life" testing will be conducted next for the Operationally Responsive Space-2 (ORS-2) bus, which leads to hardware acceptance by the Air Force's ORS program office.
Northrop Grumman's MSV spacecraft design uses a modular, rapidly reconfigurable architecture that leverages open standards to bring network avionics to spacecraft developed by an industry consortium working in conjunction with the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Air Force's ORS Office at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M.
"The government's investment in the past two-and-a-half years has developed a scalable, open architecture capability that allows bus components and payload modules to plug into a central spacecraft network using standardized technology, much like the way new hardware can be plugged into computers via USB ports," says Phil Katz, Northrop Grumman's MSV program manager.
Northrop Grumman's team consists of Applied Technology Associates, Albuquerque, N.M., Design Net Engineering, Golden, Colo.; Advanced Defense Systems, Columbia, Md.; Microcosm Inc., Hawthorne, Calif.; and the Space Dynamics Laboratory at Utah State University, Logan, Utah.
Northrop Grumman is performing the MSV-related study and hardware development under a five-year contract awarded back in November 2010 by NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., to support the Air Force's Operationally Responsive Space Office.