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Sun, Aug 12, 2012

Enviro Testing For ORBCOMM’s 2nd Generation Spacecraft Completed

Random Vibration And Thermal Vacuum Tests Conducted I Louisville, CO

Random vibration and thermal vacuum testing of ORBCOMM's Generation 2 (OG2) prototype spacecraft has been completed by Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) Space Systems' facility in Louisville, CO.

The vibration and thermal vacuum testing is considered to be the most critical set of tests prior to launch. With testing complete, the spacecraft is now scheduled to be launched in conjunction with SpaceX’s first Cargo Re-supply Services mission to the International Space Station on the next Falcon-9 launch vehicle.

“We are pleased to announce the completion of critical environmental testing for this prototype OG2 spacecraft for ORBCOMM,” said Pat Remias, senior director of Programs for SNC’s Spacecraft Systems. “This milestone signals not only the readiness of this vehicle for launch, but also completes the design verification effort for SNC’s SN-100 spacecraft bus and demonstrates its suitability for a variety of space missions.”

The first ORBCOMM OG2 spacecraft, after an orbit-raising sequence unique to this launch profile, will serve as a prototype for a total of 18 new satellites that will constitute the company’s second generation satellite network. These satellites are designed to greatly enhance ORBCOMM’s space-based global Machine-to-Machine (M2M) network with greater bandwidth, more capacity and higher gain, all of which will deliver improved messaging performance, higher data transmission speeds, increased coverage and capacity several times that of the current first generation constellation. In addition to the M2M payload, each satellite also carries technology that will collect Automatic Identification System maritime tracking signals from around the globe, resulting in global “near-real-time” service upon completion of the constellation.

Sierra Nevada Corporation is the general contractor for all OG2 spacecraft, with Boeing Argon ST as a subcontractor providing the payload.

FMI: www.sncspace.com

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