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XCOR's Nano Sat Launcher

5 May 2011, 18:25 UTC
XCOR's Nano Sat Launcher
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At Last Week's Space Tourism Society’s +10 Dinner, I spoke with two of the founders of XCOR: Aleta Jackson (Co-Founder/Chief Technician), and Dan DeLong (Vice President/Chief Engineer). We discussed general Lynx status, customers, regulation concerns for each flight, XCOR’s preference to fly out of standard airports, etc. And then we changed gears to discuss the Lynx’s “Dorsal pod” intending to ride a top of the Lynx.Here is an image of the Lynx without the Dorsal pod – in tourist configuration (my term).Here is an image of the Lynx with the Dorsal pod on top – in NanoSat configuration (again, my term). XCOR’s stated plans are to develop an upperstage that can ride inside of the Dorsal pod to launch Nano-Satellites. the Lynx would act as a first stage to get to 100km and the upperstage would take the payload to orbit. Here is an XCOR image of an upperstage launching out of the Dorsal Pod carrying a nanosat on board (perhaps my favorite XCOR image ever).Here are a few of the XCOR Upperstage specs:76cm diameter340cm longMass up to 650kg12kg Nanosat Payload400km circular orbitThis discussion with XCOR’s founders got me thinking again about NanoSat launches themselves. The small payload market (which ...

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