Microcosm was recently awarded a contract from NASA Marshall to study alternative cargo delivery services to the International Space Station, titled Alternative Access to Station. Michigan Aerospace is on the Microcosm team and will assist with the docking mechanism and sensor components of the system. This effort is a three-month study to identify and refine requirements for such a service and to identify candidate systems. Follow-on contracts may include larger efforts to design and implement such a candidate system/service. The Alternative Access to Station study is a small business set-aside, aimed in part at assisting the development of commercial launch vehicles. The study assesses three phases of support: 1) launch vehicle to LEO transport, 2) transfer of the cargo from LEO to the ISS approach ellipse, and 3) proximity operations at the ISS. There are also requirements for both a large cargo size (4000 lbs) and a small cargo size (300-1000 lbs) that can be handled separately or together, and a requirement for controlled reentry of cargo, such as waste material. The contract will begin in August, 2000, with study completion in mid-November.
Telephone: 734 975-8777 x108