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Proceedings Paper

AFRL's Demonstration and Science Experiments (DSX) mission
Author(s): Mark Scherbarth; Durand Smith; Aaron Adler; Janet Stuart; Greg Ginet
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Paper Abstract

The Air Force Research Laboratory, Space Vehicles Directorate (AFRL/RV) has developed the Demonstration and Science Experiments (DSX) mission to research technologies needed to significantly advance Department of Defense (DoD) capabilities to operate spacecraft in the harsh radiation environment of Medium-Earth Orbits (MEO). The ability to operate effectively in the MEO environment significantly increases the DoD's capability to field space systems that provide persistent global space surveillance and reconnaissance, high-speed satellite-based communication, lower-cost GPS navigation, and protection from space weather and environmental effects on a responsive satellite platform. The three DSX physics-based research/experiment areas are: 1. Wave Particle Interaction Experiment (WPIx): Researching the physics of Very-Low-Frequency (VLF) electromagnetic wave transmissions through the ionosphere and in the magnetosphere and characterizing the feasibility of natural and man-made VLF waves to reduce and precipitate space radiation; 2. Space Weather Experiment (SWx): Characterizing, mapping, and modeling the space radiation environment in MEO, an orbital regime attractive for future DoD, Civil, and Commercial missions; and 3. Space Environmental Effects (SFx): Researching and characterizing the MEO space weather effects on spacecraft electronics and materials. Collectively, thirteen individual payloads are combined together from these three research areas and integrated onto a single platform (DSX) which provides a low-cost opportunity for AFRL due to their common requirements. All three experiments require a 3-axis stabilized spacecraft bus (but no propulsion), a suite of radiation sensors, and extended duration in a low inclination, elliptical, MEO orbit. DSX will be launch-ready in summer 2010 for a likely launch comanifest with an operational DoD satellite on an Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV).

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 September 2009
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 7438, Solar Physics and Space Weather Instrumentation III, 74380B (23 September 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.824898
Show Author Affiliations
Mark Scherbarth, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Durand Smith, ARES Corp. (United States)
Aaron Adler, ARES Corp. (United States)
Janet Stuart, ATA Aerospace (United States)
Greg Ginet, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7438:
Solar Physics and Space Weather Instrumentation III
Silvano Fineschi; Judy A. Fennelly, Editor(s)

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