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Space Power (U)

Overview (U):

(U) AFSPACECOM and AF SPOs need to reduce life cycle costs of space assets while improving system performance and reliability. The goal of the space power subthrust is to design, develop, ground qualify, and flight test advanced space power components and systems that radically improve satellite reliability and performance while reducing life cycle costs of our operational systems.

Description (U):

(U) Over the past ten years, AF laboratories have led the way with the development and technology transition of technologies (GaAs solar cells and NiH2 batteries) that have doubled the performance of conventional technologies while also increasing satellite life by a factor of two. However, for our next generation of satellites, better performing power systems are necessary. Our goal is to develop space power technologies within the next ten years that will almost triple system specific power (from 4W/kg to 10 W/kg systems), halve the cost (less than $5,000/W), and extend satellite life to at least 7 years in LEO while improving the modularity and scalability of power systems. While the overall goals for the subthrust are set at the power system level, technology programs and their corresponding technical goals are established at the component level. Power subsystems are broken out according to their major functions on satellites: power generation (solar cells, arrays, and advanced concepts), energy storage (batteries and advanced concepts), and power management and distribution (PMAD). Ancillary goals for component technologies include the development of lighter, cheaper solar cells; more compact, higher efficiency arrays; small, long-lasting batteries and energy storage systems; highly efficient, modular power electronics and architectures; and innovative non-photovoltaic, non-electrochemical technology options. Achieving these goals will result in more efficient, cheaper power systems and will allow satellites such as MILSATCOM and ALARM to launch on ATLAS vehicles (as opposed to TITAN IVs) saving millions of dollars per launch.

User Impact (U):

(U) To be supplied.

Programmatics (U):

(U) Concept/Technology.

Images (U):

(U) None.

Related Initiatives (U): None.

Related Requirements (U):None.

Related Categories (U):
Space Vehicles TechnologySpace Vehicles Technology
This Table Is Unclassified.

Road Map Placements (U):

This Table Is Unclassified.

Requirements, Funding and Additional Hotlinks (U):

RDT&E Budget Item Project 8809
RDT&E Budget Item Project 682J
This Table Is Unclassified.

Lead Office (U):

(U) Air Force.

Point of Contact (U):

(U) Maj Mike LaPointe, NSSA, Open Phone: (703) 325-6422, DSN 221-6422.
(U) National Security Space Road Map Team, NSSA, Open Phone: (703)808-6040, DSN 898-6040.

Date Of Information (U):

(U) 16 July 1997

(U) Road Map Production Date: 12 July 1999

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