Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP)

Flyaway

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First time I have even seen an artists rendering of these.

http://spaceflightnow.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/150415-F-AS483-001.jpg

Looks like they have been drawn with their observational equipment not shown as they are facing away from the observer.

AFSPC 6 (GSSAP)
Delta 4 Medium+(4,2)
Cape Canaveral
July 21

Under the name Air Force Space Command mission No. 6, a second pair of Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, satellites will be launched to monitor collision threats and nefarious activities in geosynchronous orbit for U.S. Strategic Command.

http://spaceflightnow.com/2016/01/02/2016-preview-united-launch-alliance/
 
and will have the capability to perform Rendezvous and Proximity Operations (RPO).
RPO allows for the space vehicle to maneuver near a resident space object of interest, enabling characterization for anomaly resolution and enhanced surveillance, while maintaining flight safety.

I don't see how this will go over with adversary nations without degenerating into some sort exchange that degenerates into Kessler syndrome.
 
On a related note: http://www.space.com/31504-us-military-space-star-wars-games.html
 
Air Force sent GSSAP satellite to check on stalled MUOS-5

The U.S. Air Force said Aug. 18 it sent one of its high-orbiting space surveillance satellites to check on a Navy communications satellite that ran into propulsion problems about halfway to geosynchronous orbit.

Following a June 24 launch, the fifth satellite in the Navy’s next-generation narrowband communications constellation, known as the Mobile User Objective System, had been expected to reach geosynchronous orbit and a test location about 35,400 kilometers above Hawaii by July 3.

But the Navy said the satellite “experienced a failure of the orbit raising propulsion system,” five days into a 10-day climb, halting the transfer maneuver that would push the satellite from its initial elliptical launch orbit to geosynchronous orbit.

To better understand why the satellite was struggling, the Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California tasked the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, satellites for an image of MUOS-5. Satellite operators from Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado then used rendezvous and proximity maneuvers to get the once-classified vehicle into position to capture the best images of the Navy satellite, the Air Force said in a press release.

Air Force officials disclosed the previously classified GSSAP program in February 2014. Since then, they have acknowledged that the satellites would perform rendezvous and proximity maneuvers to allow close-up looks at spacecraft in geosynchronous orbits, some 36,000 kilometers above Earth’s surface. In the Aug. 18 press release, the Air Force also said GSSAP can provide the location, orbit and size of satellites and space objects.

http://spacenews.com/air-force-sent-gssap-satellite-to-check-on-stalled-muos-5/
 
sublight is back said:
I don't see how this will go over with adversary nations without degenerating into some sort exchange that degenerates into Kessler syndrome.

No logic supports that statement. This isn't something new. And there is nothing wrong with "look but don't touch". There are no territorial boundaries sovereign areas in space, so if another spacecraft is near another, there is no issue if there is no interference.
 
Flyaway said:
Air Force sent GSSAP satellite to check on stalled MUOS-5

The U.S. Air Force said Aug. 18 it sent one of its high-orbiting space surveillance satellites to check on a Navy communications satellite that ran into propulsion problems about halfway to geosynchronous orbit.

Following a June 24 launch, the fifth satellite in the Navy’s next-generation narrowband communications constellation, known as the Mobile User Objective System, had been expected to reach geosynchronous orbit and a test location about 35,400 kilometers above Hawaii by July 3.

But the Navy said the satellite “experienced a failure of the orbit raising propulsion system,” five days into a 10-day climb, halting the transfer maneuver that would push the satellite from its initial elliptical launch orbit to geosynchronous orbit.

To better understand why the satellite was struggling, the Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California tasked the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, satellites for an image of MUOS-5. Satellite operators from Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado then used rendezvous and proximity maneuvers to get the once-classified vehicle into position to capture the best images of the Navy satellite, the Air Force said in a press release.

Correct me if I'm wrong but that sounds like they had a GSSAP, which sits in geostationary orbit, come down to half that distance to perform an inspection on the MUOS-5. Presumably they didn't sacrifice the GSSAP, and that it will return to its station when complete, which would seem to indicate these things have a LOT of delta-V capability. :eek:
 
sferrin said:
Flyaway said:
Air Force sent GSSAP satellite to check on stalled MUOS-5

The U.S. Air Force said Aug. 18 it sent one of its high-orbiting space surveillance satellites to check on a Navy communications satellite that ran into propulsion problems about halfway to geosynchronous orbit.

Following a June 24 launch, the fifth satellite in the Navy’s next-generation narrowband communications constellation, known as the Mobile User Objective System, had been expected to reach geosynchronous orbit and a test location about 35,400 kilometers above Hawaii by July 3.

But the Navy said the satellite “experienced a failure of the orbit raising propulsion system,” five days into a 10-day climb, halting the transfer maneuver that would push the satellite from its initial elliptical launch orbit to geosynchronous orbit.

To better understand why the satellite was struggling, the Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California tasked the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, satellites for an image of MUOS-5. Satellite operators from Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado then used rendezvous and proximity maneuvers to get the once-classified vehicle into position to capture the best images of the Navy satellite, the Air Force said in a press release.

Correct me if I'm wrong but that sounds like they had a GSSAP, which sits in geostationary orbit, come down to half that distance to perform an inspection on the MUOS-5. Presumably they didn't sacrifice the GSSAP, and that it will return to its station when complete, which would seem to indicate these things have a LOT of delta-V capability. :eek:

Heavy ion thrusters, perhaps?
 
Byeman said:
sublight is back said:
I don't see how this will go over with adversary nations without degenerating into some sort exchange that degenerates into Kessler syndrome.

No logic supports that statement. This isn't something new. And there is nothing wrong with "look but don't touch". There are no territorial boundaries sovereign areas in space, so if another spacecraft is near another, there is no issue if there is no interference.

So 60 years of plane buzzing, colliding, and crashing, destroyer and battleship ramming, and submarine collisions will suddenly come to an immediate halt in the peaceful expanse of outer space? Lets just put all our assets up there, it sounds like military bliss to me....
 
sferrin said:
Flyaway said:
Air Force sent GSSAP satellite to check on stalled MUOS-5

The U.S. Air Force said Aug. 18 it sent one of its high-orbiting space surveillance satellites to check on a Navy communications satellite that ran into propulsion problems about halfway to geosynchronous orbit.

Following a June 24 launch, the fifth satellite in the Navy’s next-generation narrowband communications constellation, known as the Mobile User Objective System, had been expected to reach geosynchronous orbit and a test location about 35,400 kilometers above Hawaii by July 3.

But the Navy said the satellite “experienced a failure of the orbit raising propulsion system,” five days into a 10-day climb, halting the transfer maneuver that would push the satellite from its initial elliptical launch orbit to geosynchronous orbit.

To better understand why the satellite was struggling, the Joint Functional Component Command for Space at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California tasked the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, satellites for an image of MUOS-5. Satellite operators from Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado then used rendezvous and proximity maneuvers to get the once-classified vehicle into position to capture the best images of the Navy satellite, the Air Force said in a press release.

Correct me if I'm wrong but that sounds like they had a GSSAP, which sits in geostationary orbit, come down to half that distance to perform an inspection on the MUOS-5. Presumably they didn't sacrifice the GSSAP, and that it will return to its station when complete, which would seem to indicate these things have a LOT of delta-V capability. :eek:


I think the MUOS was satellite was placed into geosynchronous transfer orbit which would have an apogee at geosynchronous orbit. "Halfway" in this context means the perigee was not lifted up all the way to match. The GSAAP would therefore only need to move to the interecept of the apogee.

I have no idea what the optics for the GSAAP are like but I would guess it really doesn't need to get all that close. Even with just a 4 inch diameter telescope, it would get very detailed images of satellite structure (couple inch resolution) at 5 miles range.
 
Mike Gruss – ‏@Gruss_SN

The Air Force had previously used a GSSAP satellite to check on MUOS-3. (From an April speech by the SecAF.)

Little more detail on the link.

https://mobile.twitter.com/Gruss_SN/status/766666411443978240
 
sublight is back said:
So 60 years of plane buzzing, colliding, and crashing, destroyer and battleship ramming, and submarine collisions will suddenly come to an immediate halt in the peaceful expanse of outer space? Lets just put all our assets up there, it sounds like military bliss to me....

Sounds like ignorance is bliss and sticking ones head in the sand thinking that space is special and not like the sea, air or land and military action will won't happen there.
What part of "This isn't something new" didn't you understand. This program is the only one that has been revealed at this time.
And again, no logic supports the above statement, any "collisions" would be at low speed and it is a GSO, in which spacecraft have low relative speeds.
 
Byeman said:
sublight is back said:
So 60 years of plane buzzing, colliding, and crashing, destroyer and battleship ramming, and submarine collisions will suddenly come to an immediate halt in the peaceful expanse of outer space? Lets just put all our assets up there, it sounds like military bliss to me....

Sounds like ignorance is bliss and sticking ones head in the sand thinking that space is special and not like the sea, air or land and military action will won't happen there.
What part of "This isn't something new" didn't you understand. This program is the only one that has been revealed at this time.
And again, no logic supports the above statement, any "collisions" would be at low speed and it is a GSO, in which spacecraft have low relative speeds.

I believe this program was partially declassified to act as a form of deterrence up there in GEO.
 
Byeman said:
sublight is back said:
So 60 years of plane buzzing, colliding, and crashing, destroyer and battleship ramming, and submarine collisions will suddenly come to an immediate halt in the peaceful expanse of outer space? Lets just put all our assets up there, it sounds like military bliss to me....

....any "collisions" would be at low speed and it is a GSO, in which spacecraft have low relative speeds.

That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. The reason rendezvous procedures are very lengthy because any collision at any speed is likely fatal for the platforms involved. No country is going to stand by while their assets are buzzed by someone else. That is wishful thinking.
 
sublight is back said:
1. That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

2. The reason rendezvous procedures are very lengthy because any collision at any speed is likely fatal for the platforms involved. No country is going to stand by while their assets are buzzed by someone else. That is wishful thinking.

1. Then check your ears or have somebody translate it in terms that you can understand.
2. You are dead wrong.
Spacecraft movement at LEO vs GSO are two different things.
The initial orbital insertion of the active spacecraft into LEO along with inclination and altitude differences creates large velocities differentials.
When a spacecraft is already in GSO. It only takes a small delta V for it to move back and forth along the GSO belt.

3. And they don't have to be lengthy. The Apollo Lunar module rendezvoused within a couple of hours after launch. Gemini 11 docked with an Agena less than 95 minutes after launch.

Rendezvous timeframe depends on T/W and available propellent. The Gemini and LM spacecraft had an abundance of both. They were also smaller and didn't need large thrusters like the shuttle that would disturb the target spacecraft.
 
Details of today’s award to ULA including satellites 5 & 6 in this series.

This is the fourth competition under the current Phase 1A EELV procurement where there has been more than one competitor for national security space missions.

The three GPS 3 missions are planned between late 2019 and 2020.

The AFSPC-8 mission has two identical Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP) satellites, known as GSSAP 5 and 6. AFSPC-8 would launch in 2020 into a geosynchronous orbit.

The AFSPC-12 mission has a forward and an aft space vehicle. The forward vehicle is known as the “wide field of view” testbed and the aft vehicle is a propulsive EELV secondary payload adapter that hosts auxiliary payloads. AFSPC-12 would launch in 2020 into a geosynchronous orbit.

http://spacenews.com/air-force-awards-big-launch-contracts-to-spacex-and-ula/
 
Russian language article on GSSAP.

https://ria.ru/20190126/1549949951.html

It seems that the watchers are in turn watched.
 
 
Another launch year is underway at United Launch Alliance (ULA) with attachment of a U.S. Space Force payload atop an Atlas V 511 rocket for the USSF-8 mission later this month.

The two Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP) spacecraft, encapsulated in the rocket's 17.7-foot (5.4-meter) payload fairing, arrived at ULA's Vertical Integration Facility (VIF) and was hoisted aboard the Atlas V on Monday, Jan. 10.
The GSSAP spacecraft, built by Northrop Grumman, greatly improve our ability to rapidly detect, warn, characterize, and attribute disturbances to space systems in the geosynchronous environment, and enable spaceflight safety to assist in avoiding satellite collisions.

From their vantage point, the GSSAP satellites have clear and unobstructed viewing of objects in space without the interruption from weather or the atmospheric distortion that can limit ground-based observations. This allows for more accurate tracking and characterization of human-made orbiting objects.

GSSAP supports U.S. Strategic Command space surveillance operations as a dedicated Space Surveillance Network sensor. The GSSAP spacecraft also have the capability to perform Rendezvous and Proximity Operations (RPO). RPO allows for the space vehicle to maneuver near a resident space object of interest, enabling characterization for anomaly resolution and enhanced surveillance, while maintaining flight safety.
 

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