Author Topic: CANCELLED : Astra R3.3 - LV0011 - TROPICS Flight 2 - CCSFS SLC-46  (Read 6604 times)

Offline lrk

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Is it possible that the remaining satellites could fly on a single launch of Rocket 4.0?

Online AmigaClone

Is it possible that the remaining satellites could fly on a single launch of Rocket 4.0?

Possible, yes. I can see NASA desiring to see a couple of consecutive successful flights before launching the remaining four Tropics satellites.

Granted, that might depend on how soon Astra can develop their Rocket 4.0 and get it operational.

Offline TrevorMonty

Is it possible that the remaining satellites could fly on a single launch of Rocket 4.0?
Depends if they are all going into same orbit.
« Last Edit: 08/08/2022 09:50 pm by zubenelgenubi »

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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At a NASA town hall at the #Smallsat conference this morning, the agency says it’s “still looking for a ride” for the four remaining TROPICS cubesats that were to launch on Astra’s Rocket 3.3. Astra said last week it’s in discussions with NASA, but Rocket 4 would be a poor fit.

Offline jstrotha0975

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What is the mass of the TROPICS satellites?

Online Bean Kenobi

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What is the mass of the TROPICS satellites?

3U cubesat, 5,3 kg.

Offline su27k

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NASA looking for new launch of remaining TROPICS cubesats

Quote from: SpaceNews
Agency sources said Astra’s announcement that the company was discontinuing the Rocket 3.3 took them by surprise. Switching vehicles poses cost and schedule challenges that NASA is still studying.

However, even before the announcement, NASA was looking into alternative options while awaiting the outcome of the investigation into the June launch failure.

Offline Sam Ho

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Cross-post: the remaining TROPICS launch(es) will be competed under VADR:

Sep 22, 2022

NASA Maintains Contractual Relationship with Astra, Presses Forward with TROPICS Mission

Recognizing the urgent science needs, NASA is adjusting its launch services plan to complete the timely launch of a CubeSat constellation designed to improve understanding of tropical cyclones.

The agency’s Time-Resolved Observations of Precipitation structure and storm Intensity with a Constellation of Smallsats (TROPICS) mission launch service now will be competed under the agency’s Venture-Class Acquisition of Dedicated and Rideshare (VADR) IDIQ contract targeting the 2023 hurricane season.

NASA and Astra also have agreed to modify its existing launch services contract, originally planned for the agency’s TROPICS constellation, for the launch of comparable scientific payloads on Astra’s Rocket 4.0 in the future.

NASA selected commercial partner Astra in 2021 to provide launch services for TROPICS across three launches using the company’s Rocket 3.3 launch vehicle. On June 12, 2022, after a nominal first-stage flight, the upper stage of Astra’s Rocket 3.3 shut down early and failed to deliver the first two TROPICS CubeSats to orbit. NASA currently is participating in the launch investigation, led by Astra and the Federal Aviation Administration.

Following the first TROPICS launch attempt, Astra and NASA engaged in discussions regarding the remaining launch attempts. Astra then notified NASA of its intent to discontinue its Rocket 3.3 and indicated the company would potentially not resume launches prior to the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season. The VADR contract allows the 13 companies selected this year to compete for the rebid of the TROPICS launch services, giving the agency and external stakeholders the ability to use TROPICS data sooner.

TROPICS is an Earth venture mission – science-driven, competitively selected, low-cost missions that provide opportunity for investment in innovative Earth science to enhance our capability to better understand the current state of the Earth system and to enable continual improvement in the prediction of future changes. NASA is committed to helping grow the U.S. commercial launch market while enabling the agency’s science missions. The VADR contract allows NASA to nurture the emerging commercial market by awarding launch providers more risk-tolerant payloads such as TROPICS.

Last Updated: Sep 28, 2022
Editor: James Cawley


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