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DARPA, Air Force Kick Off Falcon Phase II Small Launch Vehicle

Press Release From: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)
Posted: Friday, September 17, 2004

image The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the U.S. Air Force have awarded funding to four teams for the second phase of the Falcon Small Launch Vehicle (SLV) program. The goal of the Falcon SLV program is to develop and demonstrate an affordable and responsive space lift capability.

Each team was awarded an other transaction for prototypes agreement. The teams and agreement values are:

  • Airlaunch LLC, Reno Nev.; $11,372,342
  • Lockheed Martin Corp., Space Systems Co., New Orleans, La.; $11,691,215
  • Microcosm Inc., El Segundo, Calif.; $10,498,353
  • Space Exploration Technologies Inc., El Segundo, Calif.; $8,000,000

Under the newly awarded agreements, each team will conduct a 10-month phase IIa preliminary design and development effort to mature their launch vehicle designs. In addition, one of the companies, Space Exploration Technologies, will conduct an early, responsive launch demonstration. Next year, DARPA and the Air Force will select one or more of the phase IIa teams to conduct detailed design and fabrication of their launch vehicle. Phase IIb will culminate in 2007 with flight tests to launch a small satellite to validate vehicle performance. In addition to DARPA and the Air Force, NASA has also expressed interest in the Small Launch Vehicle capability and is a formal partner in the Falcon Small Launch Vehicle development program.

Media with questions, please contact Jan Walker, (703) 696-2404, or jwalker@darpa.mil . Companies and military organizations should contact Dr. Steven Walker at (703) 696-2377.

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