One Night in Wallops

Excellent launch video of the ORS-1 spacecraft from Wallops Island in Virginia. The news, via the USAF:

An Air Force team successfully launched the first Operationally Responsive Space prototype satellite aboard a Minotaur I launch vehicle at 11:09 p.m. EDT June 29 from the NASA Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, Va. ORS-1 deployed 12 minutes after launch.

This marks a great achievement by the Space and Missile Systems Center’s Space Development and Test Directorate, the Operationally Responsive Space Office and their contractor teams, according to Col. Carol Welsch, the directorate’s acting director and the ORS-1 mission director. ORS-1 is the Operationally Responsive Space Office’s first operational prototype satellite and represents the potential of low-cost, tactically focused satellites designed to provide critical battlespace awareness capabilities to the joint warfighter.

“Words cannot express how proud I am of the entire ORS-1 team,” she said. “The men and women of the Space Development and Test Directorate, the Operationally Responsive Space Office, and our industry partners of Goodrich, ATK, and Orbital have all worked tirelessly to move forward on the concept of a responsive space capability designed to support the warfighter. Their teamwork and dedication is simply inspiring.”

Rapidly developing and fielding ORS-1 is an important step to demonstrating the possibilities to meet emerging and persistent warfighter needs in operationally relevant timelines, Colonel Welsch said.

“Our team was able to develop, integrate, test and launch this system in just over 30 months which is a remarkable achievement,” she said.

ORS-1 was initiated as a result of a requirement to the ORS office from the commander of U.S. Strategic Command to support U.S. Central Command.

Built by ATK in 16 months! In Maryland, no less.

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