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Small Satellite Launch to LEO: A Review of Current and Future Launch Systems

Article (PDF Available) inTransactions of the Japan Society for Aeronautical and Space Sciences 12(ists29) · July 2014
DOI: 10.2322/tastj.12.Tf_39
Nicholas Husayn Crisp at The University of Manchester
  • 4.82
  • The University of Manchester
Katharine Lucy Smith at The University of Manchester
  • 21.35
  • The University of Manchester
Peter Michael Hollingsworth at The University of Manchester
  • 11.96
  • The University of Manchester
Abstract
As minaturisation of ever improving enabling technologies increase the capabilities of small satellites, the issue of commercially affordable access to Earth orbit becomes more significant. Whilst the current practice of multiple manifesting is dominant, the emergence of new small launch vehicles may instigate a transition to the dedicated launch of these small satellites. A brief review of the current range of launch vehicles is presented and available small satellite launch market projections briefly examined. The small launch vehicles currently in development are also outlined and their potential to drive the future small satellite launch market discussed.