-- Initial Spacecraft Testing and Activation Now Underway; Mission’s
Science Operations to Begin Later This Year --
-- OCO-2 Is NASA’s First Satellite Dedicated to Making Space-Based
Measurements of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide --
“The initial check-out and testing process indicates the OCO-2 mission is proceeding smoothly,” said Mr.
At launch, the OCO-2 satellite weighed approximately 990 pounds (450 kilograms). The observatory has single-axis articulated arrays and three-axis attitude control to ensure high precision in positioning. It will operate in a 435-mile (700-kilometer) altitude, near-polar orbit with five other satellites as part of the Afternoon (A-Train) Constellation. This international fleet of Earth-observing satellites circle the globe once every 98 minutes in a sun-synchronous orbit that crosses the equator near
OCO-2 is the 151st satellite Orbital has built and delivered to commercial, civil government and national security customers over the past 32 years. Orbital-built satellites have now amassed approximately 1,100 years of in-orbit experience, a number that will continue to grow as the company is scheduled to deploy up to nine spacecraft in 2014 for commercial communications, space station logistics, scientific research and national security missions.
Orbital develops and manufactures small- and medium-class rockets and space systems for commercial, military and civil government customers. The company’s primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-Earth orbit, geosynchronous-Earth orbit and planetary exploration spacecraft for communications, remote sensing, scientific and defense missions; human-rated space systems for Earth-orbit, lunar and other missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense systems that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also provides satellite subsystems and space-related technical services to
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