Reboost packages[i] have been proposed, to extend the lifetime of geosynchronous satellites. Since present-day GEO satellites are not designed to handle refueling, the reboost package is an autonomous system including fuel, an engine, controls and communications, as well as the capacity to rendezvous and attach to a satellite. Reboost packages are extremely significant, because they substantially extend the lifetime of a satellite. The military interest in this stems from the possibility to execute several plane-change maneuvers, which are expensive in fuel consumption, to respond to international crises. Initial customers outside the military are expected to be GEO satellite operators whose satellites are nearing their successful design life. These satellites have paid off, and are generating revenue at little cost. Additional life would be gravy. The ability to do orbit reboost vastly reduces the risk of GEO launches, and thus reduces insurance costs.
The idea of reboost has been
discussed in conference presentations and DARPA solicitations. In the
For our purposes, DoD funding
is assumed to have paid for the development of the
Mass - 500 kg
Revenue - $60 million
Material - $20 million
Maintenance - $10 million
Launch - $13 million
Fixed - $3 million
Launch Costs determined by $26,000/kg to GEO (source: Futron[iii] , $13,000/kg to LEO)
Revenue starts decreasing by 5%, 13 years after start of company.
J.B., "Teleoperation Experiment Model".
In "An Investigation of Predictive and Adaptive Model-Based Methods for
Direct Ground-to-Space Teleoperation with Time Delay". MS Thesis,
[iii]Futron Corporation. Space Transportation Costs: Trends in Price Per Pound to Orbit 1990-2000. 6 September
2002. 22 August
2006. http://www.futron.com/pdf/FutronLaunchCostWP.pdf Viewed