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20th TRW/Aerojet DSP Satellite Successfully Launched by U.S. Air Force.

Business Editors

REDONDO BEACH, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 9, 2000

The 20th Defense Support Program (DSP) satellite built by the TRW/Aerojet team was successfully launched yesterday by a Titan IVB rocket (powered by Aerojet engines) from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

The satellite was placed into a geosynchronous orbit 22,300 miles above the Earth approximately seven hours after launch and is sending back state-of-health data.

"TRW continues its long-standing and highly important role supporting missile warning and defense for the nation with the successful launch of the 20th DSP," said Allen Parker, DSP program manager, TRW Space & Electronics Group. "We are building on our experience with each successive launch and are fully committed to the long-term future of this critical mission."

TRW and Aerojet have built and delivered 23 DSP spacecraft containing missile-detecting infrared sensors built by Aerojet. Twenty spacecraft have been launched; three more will be launched in the coming years. DSP spacecraft have exceeded their specified design lives by 125% through five upgrade programs to improve satellite capability, survivability and life expectancy.

"Today's launch exemplifies Aerojet's commitment to excellence in the aerospace industry ranging from highly reliable rocket propulsion systems to precise sensor electronics," said Ron Simpson, Aerojet's DSP program manager.

TRW builds the spacecraft under contract to the U.S. Air Force and integrates the sensor payloads provided by Aerojet. The company also provides day-to-day technical assistance at Schriever and Buckley Air Force Bases; performs satellite performance analysis; anomaly resolution and early on-orbit test at its TRW Orbital Test Station; and has built software that helps to process and distribute satellite data.

Aerojet, besides designing and building the 1,200-pound DSP infrared sensors, provides software systems for ground processing of DSP infrared data.

The company developed the Joint Tactical Ground Station, which reports DSP data to theater commanders, and the Attack and Launch Early Reporting to Theater system to analyze DSP data and improve the identification and tracking of ballistic missiles. Aerojet also builds the first- and second-stage engines for the Titan IVB launch vehicle.

A TRW-led team and Aerojet are applying this experience to the Space-Based Infrared System Low (SBIRS Low) program, the low-Earth orbit component of the next-generation missile warning system. The team was awarded an Air Force contract last August to perform program definition and risk reduction on SBIRS Low.

SBIRS Low will provide precision tracking for national and theater missile defense throughout a missile's trajectory, including discrimination of mid-course objects.

Aerojet, a GenCorp company, is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader principally serving the space electronics, missile and space propulsion, and smart munitions and armaments markets. Aerojet's Web site is at http://www.aerojet.com.

TRW Space & Electronics Group builds communications, scientific and defense spacecraft for military, civil and commercial customers; produces, integrates and tests payloads; develops advanced space instruments; and integrates experiments into spacecraft.

It is an operating unit of TRW Inc., which provides advanced technology products and services for the global automotive, aerospace and information systems markets. TRW's Web site is at http://www.trw.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:May 9, 2000
Words:509
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