Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .


Subscribe free to our newsletters via your




















TECH SPACE
NASA's TDRS-M space communications satellite begins final testing
by Ashley Hume for GSFC News
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Feb 14, 2017


Artist's concept of the third-generation TDRS spacecraft. Image courtesy NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. For a larger version of this image please go here. Watch a video on the technology here.

Kennedy Space Center FL (SPX) Feb 14, 2017 The Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) project has begun final testing on a new satellite that will replenish NASA's Space Network. The spacecraft is scheduled to launch from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Aug. 3, 2017, on an Atlas V rocket.

The addition of TDRS-M to the fleet will provide the Space Network (SN) the ability to support space communication for an additional 15 years. The network consists of TDRS satellites that transmit data to and from ground stations on Earth for NASA missions and expendable launch vehicles.

Without the Space Network, scientists, engineers and control room staff would be unable to readily access data from missions like the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Space Station.

"The Space Network is critical to numerous NASA missions that are fundamentally changing the way we think about science," said Bill Marinelli, TDRS development manager with the Space Communications and Navigation (SCaN) program office at NASA Headquarters, which provides programmatic oversight to the TDRS mission.

"By expanding the fleet of satellites that support communications from these missions, TDRS-M will enable NASA to continue scientific exploration and discovery for years to come."

Designed, built and environmentally tested at Boeing's satellite development center in El Segundo, California, the spacecraft is currently undergoing a final series of tests to ensure it is flight-ready. TDRS-M will continue to undergo electronics, compatibility and deployment tests into the spring as the team prepares to ship the spacecraft to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, for its mid-summer launch.

NASA developed the idea for the Space Network in the 1970s to improve upon the ground-based space communications networks the agency had used since its inception. With ground networks, spacecraft could only connect with the antennas for short periods of time while they were in sight of the ground terminal.

Then they would be without a communications connection for long periods of time. By contrast, a space-based network with satellites placed around the globe would provide nearly continuous coverage.

In coming months, engineers will test TDRS-M to ensure it connects with the Space Network's various ground stations. NASA built the initial White Sands Ground Terminal (WSGT) in Las Cruces, New Mexico, in the 1970s and launched the first TDRS in 1983.

In the 1980s, NASA identified the need for and built the Second TDRS Ground Terminal (STGT) at White Sands, forming the White Sands Complex. Today, the network has added two additional ground terminals in Guam and Blossom Point, Maryland, and currently has nine TDRS in orbit around Earth.

Two of the original spacecraft have now been retired. The two most recent satellites, TDRS-K and TDRS-L, were launched from Kennedy Space Center to replenish the fleet in January 2013 and January 2014, respectively. After the scheduled TDRS-M launch later this year, the TDRS project will have successfully launched 12 satellites in support of the Space Network.

The TDRS project at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center is responsible for the design, build, integration and testing of the spacecraft. After launch, on-orbit testing and spacecraft acceptance by the TDRS project, the Space Network will integrate TDRS-M into the TDRS constellation.

The TDRS project office at Goddard Space Flight Center manages the development effort in conjunction with the Space Communications and Navigation (SCaN) office within the Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington.


Comment on this article using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue source from good quality advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames, passwords and payment processes.

Our news coverage takes time and money to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites helpful then please consider becoming a regular supporter of just make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only


.


Related Links
Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) project
Space Technology News - Applications and Research






Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Previous Report
TECH SPACE
Orbit Logic Software to be used for BridgeSat Laser Comm Scheduling
Greenbelt MD (SPX) Feb 08, 2017
Orbit Logic has announced that BridgeSat has awarded Orbit Logic a contract to provide software for its optical ground telescope network to plan laser communication contacts with satellites using its laser downlink services. Orbit Logic will use its STK Scheduler software product as the core scheduling engine for the BridgeSat Mission Planning System solution, coupled with a web applicatio ... read more


TECH SPACE
Endurance athletes: Swig mouthwash for improved performance

Looking to the future: Russia, US mull post-ISS cooperation in space

Progress Underway for First Commercial Airlock on Space Station

A new recruit for ESA's astronaut corps

TECH SPACE
Airbus Safran Launchers: 77th consecutive successful launch for Ariane 5

India puts record 104 satellites into orbit

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket vertical at Florida's Kennedy Space Center

India to launch record 104 satellites next week

TECH SPACE
ISRO saves its Mars mission spacecraft from eclipse

Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter plays crucial role in search for landing sites

Angling up for Mars science

Swirling spirals at the north pole of Mars

TECH SPACE
Chinese cargo spacecraft set for liftoff in April

China looks to Mars, Jupiter exploration

China's first cargo spacecraft to leave factory

China launches commercial rocket mission Kuaizhou-1A

TECH SPACE
NASA seeks partnerships with US companies to advance commercial space technologies

A New Space Paradigm

Why it's time for Australia to launch its own space agency

Government announces boost for UK commercial space sector

TECH SPACE
NASA and MIT collaborate to develop space-based quantum-dot spectrometer

NASA's TDRS-M space communications satellite begins final testing

Lasers could give space research its broadband moment

Terahertz chips a new way of seeing through matter

TECH SPACE
Possibility of Silicon-Based Life Grows

NASA finds planets of red dwarf stars may face oxygen loss in habitable zones

Dwarf star 200 light years away contains life's building blocks

Santa Fe Institute researchers look for life's lower limits

TECH SPACE
NASA receives science report on Europa lander concept

New Horizons Refines Course for Next Flyby

It's Never 'Groundhog Day' at Jupiter

Public to Choose Jupiter Picture Sites for NASA Juno




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News








The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement