Author Topic: Cygnus CRS OA-7 - April 2017 - Payloads & On-Orbit Discussion Thread  (Read 31585 times)

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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The QB50 launch schedule is showing 30 December for their launch date flying from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport to the ISS. Inspection, processing and hand-over to Orbital-ATK of the cubesats is from October to December. This can only be the OA-7 mission, which was previously known to be scheduled for December 2016.

Batch A of 20 QB50 cubesats will be deployed in February 2017, with Batch B and another 20 QB50 cubesats in May 2017.

https://www.qb50.eu/index.php/schedule

edit/gongora: additional thread for this mission at http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=41564.0, use that thread for launch discussion.
« Last Edit: 04/07/2017 01:24 PM by gongora »
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #1 on: 09/14/2016 12:34 AM »
Here's a short report I wrote on one of the QB50 satellites flying on this mission.

On Monday, 12 September 2016, I had a chance to see the final touches being made to SUSat. The 2U cubesat is one of three Australian QB50 satellites that are scheduled to be launch in the OA-7 Cygnus spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS) on 30 December 2016. The QB50 satellites will then be deployed from ISS in two batches in February and March 2017.

Attached are photos of Dr. Matthew Tetlow, the project leader of SUSat, in front of the clean air box where SUSat is being worked on. In the close up photo, you can see the dummy Ion and Neutral Mass Spectrometer (INMS) next to SUSat on the right. The real INMS had been test fitted to SUSat, but then sent back to Mullard Space Science Laboratory (MSSL) where further work needs to be performed on the instrument. The INMS will be used for measuring the thermosphere around the Earth.

You can see two cables going to the top of SUSat. The cable going to the back is the programming and power cable. Dr. Tetlow was in the process of reprogramming the software that controls the Sun sensors. The cable going to the front is the Remove Before Flight inhibit cable. When plugged in, SUSat is in a safe mode. The INMS is fitted to the base, which also has several contact switches. When SUSat is deployed, the switches tells SUSat that it can now power on and start working. Unfortunately, one of the original switches failed during vibration testing. The switches have now been replaced by more simpler and robust units, having successfully passed testing on the other Australian QB50 cubesats.

Commercial solar cells from Azurspace and Spectrolab are used. There are five panels, one each on the four main sides and one small panel on top. Each side panel has four triple-junction Gallium Arsenide solar cells with the top panel having two cells, for a total of 18 cells. Each large panel is capable of generating 5.2 Watts, although SUSat only has an average power of around 4 Watts, with a 2 Watt minimum operating power. Each panel also has a small Sun detector. You can see one of these in the middle on the right hand side, below the orange blob.

On the left, you can see one of the two Sun sensors (the round object) and one of the two GPS receive antennas (the square object) from Antcom. The other Sun sensor and GPS antenna are on the other side of SUSat. At the top you can see one of the two yellow communication antennas in the stowed position. The other antenna is on the other side. This is simply your everyday measuring tape that has been cut to size! One antenna operates at VHF (Very High Frequency) and the other antenna at UHF (Ultra High Frequency). Two antennas and frequencies are used for redundancy.

The total mass of SUSat is 1.96 kg plus or minus 40 grams, which is the uncertainty of the INMS mass. I'd like to also acknowledge all the students from the University of Adelaide who have worked hard to make this possible as well as Dr. William Cowley and his team from the University of South Australia for providing the communications electronics on the satellite and the ground station.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.

Offline ZachS09

Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #2 on: 09/14/2016 03:17 AM »
I have a feeling that the OA-7 mission might not launch on December 30th because of the delays of OA-5. Anyone disagree with my thoughts?
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Offline Sam Ho

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Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #3 on: 09/14/2016 12:05 PM »
I have a feeling that the OA-7 mission might not launch on December 30th because of the delays of OA-5. Anyone disagree with my thoughts?

I don't see that would necessarily be the case. If you look at the FPIP manifest from Chris's article last week, OA-5, HTV-6, SpX-10, and OA-7 were pretty much scheduled back to back. HTV-6 is now delayed to fix an air leak, and SpX is pending Falcon RTF, which is NET November, so it would not be unreasonable for the next two VV to both be Cygnus.

I'm sure FPIP meetings must be interesting.

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2016/09/antares-rtf-oa-5-cygnus-iss/

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #4 on: 10/17/2016 06:22 PM »
Quote
As the #OA5 #Antares rocket prepares for launch, the next core stage was moved today to the HIF to be integrated for the next mission

https://twitter.com/orbitalatk/status/788080808426770432

Offline ZachS09

Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #5 on: 10/17/2016 10:26 PM »
Quote
As the #OA5 #Antares rocket prepares for launch, the next core stage was moved today to the HIF to be integrated for the next mission

https://twitter.com/orbitalatk/status/788080808426770432

Shouldn't the wrapped core be the one for the OA-8E mission because the OA-7 core was used for the static fire?
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Offline jacqmans

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Re: Cygnus OA-7 - 30 December 2016
« Reply #6 on: 10/18/2016 02:07 PM »
Quote
As the #OA5 #Antares rocket prepares for launch, the next core stage was moved today to the HIF to be integrated for the next mission

https://twitter.com/orbitalatk/status/788080808426770432

Shouldn't the wrapped core be the one for the OA-8E mission because the OA-7 core was used for the static fire?

NO

Offline zubenelgenubi

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - 30 Dec. 2016 - Discussion
« Reply #7 on: 11/04/2016 12:54 PM »
According to SFN ULA won another Atlas contract from Orbital ATK to launch OAS 7 in March next year
Is there any hardware (Cygnus, cubesats, ISS cargo) that was already at Wallops that will need to be moved to the Cape (Astrotech in Titusville)?
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Offline jacqmans

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #8 on: 11/04/2016 01:29 PM »
According to SFN ULA won another Atlas contract from Orbital ATK to launch OAS 7 in March next year
Is there any hardware (Cygnus, cubesats, ISS cargo) that was already at Wallops that will need to be moved to the Cape (Astrotech in Titusville)?

The next Antares/Cygnus launch is scheduled for February next year from wallops... so I do not think this is necessary...
« Last Edit: 11/04/2016 01:30 PM by jacqmans »

Online HVM

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #9 on: 11/04/2016 04:50 PM »
"Orbital ATK said that the OA-7 Cygnus mission, previously planned to launch on an Antares rocket from Wallops Island, Virginia, will instead launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in the spring of 2017. The company said this is a one-time arrangement, with future Cygnus launches returning to the Antares."

http://spacenews.com/orbital-to-launch-next-cygnus-mission-on-atlas-5/

Offline Kansan52

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #10 on: 11/04/2016 05:41 PM »
Flexibility. This is the type of deal that makes me believe ULA can compete with or without being the lowest price.

Offline Star One

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Offline edkyle99

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #12 on: 11/04/2016 08:46 PM »
"Orbital ATK said that the OA-7 Cygnus mission, previously planned to launch on an Antares rocket from Wallops Island, Virginia, will instead launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in the spring of 2017. The company said this is a one-time arrangement, with future Cygnus launches returning to the Antares."

http://spacenews.com/orbital-to-launch-next-cygnus-mission-on-atlas-5/
Puzzling.  Antares inaugural data review?  Something else?   

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Offline Skyrocket

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #13 on: 11/04/2016 08:48 PM »
"Orbital ATK said that the OA-7 Cygnus mission, previously planned to launch on an Antares rocket from Wallops Island, Virginia, will instead launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in the spring of 2017. The company said this is a one-time arrangement, with future Cygnus launches returning to the Antares."

http://spacenews.com/orbital-to-launch-next-cygnus-mission-on-atlas-5/
Puzzling.  Antares inaugural data review?  Something else?   

 - Ed Kyle

Likely payload capacity.

Offline Kansan52

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #14 on: 11/04/2016 09:13 PM »
the spacenews link above states NASA requested the change to include more payload.

Offline Sam Ho

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #15 on: 11/08/2016 09:41 PM »
From the OA non-earnings call today, it seems that the Atlas for OA-7 is for schedule, and they also plan to fly 3 Antares over the next 12 months:
Quote
The company has not, as of now, finalized any arrangements, but I think I can share our viewpoint on this situation. As we're always doing, Orbital ATK has discussed with NASA how we can best contribute to beating the space agency's needs for space station cargo, particularly over the next 12 to 18 months while other cargo delivery options are in flux.

As part of this, we are now preparing to conduct four cargo missions over a 12-month period from early next year through early 2018 to provide NASA with maximum operational flexibility in view of the situation with the other cargo suppliers. But to ensure that we can achieve a higher-than-planned flight rate and to maximize cargo capacity on each mission, we may well decide to supplement the three Antares rockets that are currently in production with one Atlas launch during this time.

We don't want to overcommit to the flight rate that we can achieve over the next 12 to 15 months. And so we think for that reason it may well be prudent to supplement the planned Antares launches with a possible Atlas launch. And we'll have more to communicate on this in the near future.
http://seekingalpha.com/article/4021177-orbital-atks-oa-ceo-dave-thompson-q3-2016-results-earnings-call-transcript

Offline Steven Pietrobon

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Re: Antares 230 - Cygnus OA-7 - February 2017 - Discussion
« Reply #16 on: 11/10/2016 08:42 AM »
Heard from Dr. Matthew Tetlow today at the South Australian Space Forum that the QB50 satellites will be launching on 17 February on OA-7.
Akin's Laws of Spacecraft Design #1:  Engineering is done with numbers.  Analysis without numbers is only an opinion.


Offline CorvusCorax

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Re: Atlas V - Cygnus CRS OA-7 - March 2017 - Discussion Thread
« Reply #18 on: 11/14/2016 06:38 PM »
Really impressive awesome article! That's NSF at its best ( and also very very nice of Frank DeMauro )

Offline robertross

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Re: Atlas V - Cygnus CRS OA-7 - March 2017 - Discussion Thread
« Reply #19 on: 11/14/2016 10:50 PM »
Chris Gebhardt interview with Orbital ATK on Antares performance and switch to Atlas V:
https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2016/11/oa-7-atlas-v-high-praise-antares-rtf/

Wow, ULA can certainly deliver. 4 months! Beyond impressive, and it says a lot about Orbital ATK and their organization to afford this interchangeability of their spacecraft.

Nice article too.
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