1435. Weight Considerations for On-Orbit Maintenance Satellites


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G S Mathews: 1435. Weight Considerations for On-Orbit Maintenance Satellites. 1981.



With the advent of the shuttle orbiter, it is cost effective to extend the on-orbit life, or change
some mission aspects of a satellite by on-orbit maintenance and reboost by the shuttle/orbiter. The
Space Telescope (ST) is the first of the long life satellites. Its mission requires maintenance and
reboost at the end of two and one half years and at the end of five years return to earth for refurbishment.
The cycle is repeated over the expected fifteen year life of the vehicle.
The intent of the author is to alert the mass properties engineer to new sources of weight inherent in the
requirements for on-orbit maintenance. Concepts and data presented are based on design activity of the Support
Systems Module of the ST, NASA Contract NA.58-32697, for Marshall Space Flight Center.
The ST is 42.3 ft. long, and varies from 10 ft. to 14 ft. in diameter. The launch weight of the ST is approximately
24,000 lb., of which 10,300 lb. is attributable to the SSM. Figure 1-1 depicts the size of the ST and establishes
perspective in relation to the requirements.
Specific areas discussed or presented include general requirements for crew safety, crew aids and crew member
imposed loads, orbital replacement units, doors and wiring, and equipment required for Remote Manipulator System
(RMS) deployment/retrieval/berthing.


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