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Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Medium Lift Vehicle (MLV) (U)

Overview (U):

(U) The Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) is a $2 billion Air Force space lift modernization program. EELV will reduce the cost of launching the government portion of the National Mission Model by at least 25 to 50 percent over the current systems; Delta, Atlas, and Titan. The program's objective is to save $5 billion to $10 billion between the years 2002 and 2020. In addition to reducing costs, EELV is designed to improve space launch operability and standardization. The intent of the EELV program is to develop a family of launch vehicles, using common components, standard services and supporting systems that will significantly reduce the life-cycle cost (LCC) compared to today's systems.

Description (U):

(U) The EELV Medium Lift Vehicle (MLV) program roughly corresponds to the current Delta and Atlas class vehicles. The program includes: the development of the system design; demonstrations of key technologies; modifications to industrial capability and launch facilities; and demonstration launches of both medium and heavy lift EELV variants. The EELV family of vehicles will be capable of meeting the government's spacelift needs (DoD, intelligence, and other government missions) from FY 2002 through 2020, as defined in the National Mission Model. The first operational launch for the Medium Lift Vehicle (MLV) is required by FY02 at both Vandenberg AFB (VAFB), CA, and Cape Canaveral Air Station (CCAS), FL. EELV is required to operate in peacetime, during national emergencies and in periods of war (though EELV hardware and facilities need not be nuclear-hardened). The system must also meet all international, federal, state, local and AF requirements regarding safety, environmental compliance, security and treaty limitations.

(U) There are currently three employment concepts for the EELV: launch to deploy; launch to sustain; and launch to augment. Launch to Deploy (LTD) is a strategy defined as a launch, or series of launches, required to initially achieve a constellation's Designed Operational Capability (DOC). This can include both research and development launches as well as initial operational constellation deployments. All government LTD missions will be planned as far in advance as possible (often years) and will be manifested based on vehicle/payload availability and launch base constraints. The nominal LTD processing timeline goal is 45 days for medium lift and 90 days for heavy lift.

(U) Launch to Sustain (LTS) is a strategy to replace satellites that fail abruptly or are forecasted to fail. Predicted and unforeseen satellite failures drive two lower level definitions of this strategy, LTS-Predicted and LTS-Unforeseen. The goal is to project launches in advance (within normal spacelift processing times) to replace a satellite anticipated to fail, with no outages in mission capability, and monitor the need for launch at least quarterly once inside the CLS. In some cases, abrupt satellite failure (LTS-Unforeseen) may require re-prioritization within the CLS. LTS must support a launch call and launch for medium lift within 45 days or heavy lift within 90 days.

(U) Launch to Augment (LTA) is a strategy designed to increase a constellation's capability above the DOC in response to war, crisis, or contingency. LTA capability requirements should be based on warfighter space system replenishment and reconstitution requirements. In the worst case, this may call for multiple launches within weeks versus months. LTA requirements are based on: (a) on-orbit replenishment and reconstitution strategies because of the emergence of an unforeseen threat; and, (b) the ability to recover from expected wartime losses of critical space-based assets. Since LTA operations may interrupt near term LTD and LTS operations, the inherent resiliency of the various spacelift systems is required to permit quick recovery to routine operations.

(U) The Air Force is acquiring EELV launch services through a competitive rolling downselect leading to the selection of one or two EELV launch concepts. The Low Cost Concept Validation (LCCV) phase conducted from August 1995 through December 1996 selected four contractor concepts for $30 million concept validation efforts. At the end of this phase, the Air Force selected two of the four concepts for continuation in the Pre-Engineering and Manufacturing Development (Pre-EMD) phase. Lockheed-Martin and McDonnell-Douglas (now Boeing) each received $60 million contracts to continue their EELV design efforts through May 1998. The Air Force intends to award two EMD contracts in FY98 to complete the development of the EELV system design, mission integration, and initial production. Initial Launch Services contracts for launches may also be awarded at this time.

User Impact (U):

(U) Current National, DoD, and Air Force Space Command policies identify "assured access to space" as the need to assure the availability of critical space capabilities for executing space missions regardless of failures of single elements of the space force structure. This is a key concept which supports National Security Strategy, National Military Strategy, and draft Air Force Doctrine (AFDD4). These policies indicate that assured mission capability for critical space systems can only be achieved through assured access to space, robust satellite control, on-orbit sparing, proliferation, and reconstitution. Currently, our assured access to space is expensive and costs are likely to increase. Therefore, the new operational need is to maintain a robust, modern space capability at a reasonable cost to launch satellites responsively to meet warfighter, National Command Authority, and other national security mission needs.

Programmatics (U):

(U) Programmable.

Images (U):

Added Value to the WarfighterAFSPC Vision
EELV-BoeingBoeing Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle
EELV-LockheedLockheed Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Initiatives (U):
Adv Wideband Satellite (AWS)Advanced Wideband Satellite (AWS)
Advanced EHFAdvanced Extremely High Frequency (EHF)
Eastern RangeEastern Range
EELV (HLV)Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Heavy Lift Vehicle (HLV)
EELV Follow-OnEELV Follow-On
SBIRS HighSpace Based Infrared System (SBIRS) High
Western RangeWestern Range
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Requirements (U):None.

Related Categories (U):
LaunchDoD Space Launch Programs
Launch VehiclesLaunch Vehicles
This Table Is Unclassified.

Road Map Placements (U):

Major DoD Space ProgramsEvolution of the Selected Space Programs
National Security Space Road MapIntegrated System Road Map
This Table Is Unclassified.

Requirements, Funding and Additional Hotlinks (U):

Launch Vehicle Concepts
RDT&E Budget Item Project 0006
Sattelite Control ORD (95)
EELV Homepage
SMC-Fact Sheets
This Table Is Unclassified.

Lead Office (U):

(U) Air Force.

(U) DoD: USD (A&T) and OASD(C3I), Pentagon, Washington, DC
(U) Service Staff: SAF/AQS, Pentagon, Washington, DC
(U) Major Command: AFMC/SMC, Los Angeles AFB, CA
(U) Program Management: AFPEO/Space, Pentagon, Washington, DC; EELV Program Office, Los Angeles AFB, CA

Point of Contact (U):

(U) Lt Col Jim Knauf, SMC, Open Phone: (310) 336-4195.

Date Of Information (U):

(U) 24 September 1997

(U) Road Map Production Date: 12 July 1999

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