Reflector Damage Delays TerreStar’s TS-1 Launch
[Satellite Today – 6-30-08] The launch of TerreStar Networks Inc.‘s TerreStar-1 satellite may be pushed into the second quarter of 2009 due to damaged sustained during construction, TerreStar Corp. announced June 30
The spacecraft’s reflector sustained damage during manufacturing at Harris Corp., a subcontractor to prime contractor Space Systems/Loral (SS/L). The companies did not provide detail of the damage, but in June 29 letter SS/L informed TerreStar that it can “confirm that TS-1 will be ready to ship to the launch provider in April. TerreStar had planned to place the satellite in orbit in October slot aboard an Ariane 5 rocket.
“We have every expectation that Harris and SS/L will resolve this issue to our satisfaction,” TerreStar President Jeffrey Epstein said in a statement.
The satellite, which will form the space component of TerreStar’s planned next generation integrated satellite-terrestrial wireless network, previously has been delayed by problems with the S-band low noise amplifiers, oscillators and feed array.
TerreStar’s license from the U.S. Federal Communications Commission and Industry Canada to operate its system contains milestones for satellite launch and the beginning of operations, and TerreStar again will seek approval from the agencies to delay the launch date and start of service, the company said.