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|Orbital Sciences Corporation : ORBITAL SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES COMPANY-BUILT NuSTAR SATELLITE ABOARD PEGASUS ROCKET FOR NASA|
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Barron Beneski (703) 406-5528
ORBITAL SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES COMPANY-BUILT NuSTAR SATELLITE ABOARD PEGASUS ROCKET FOR NASA
-- Latest Pegasus Mission Is 27th Consecutive Successful Launch --
-- NASA Astrophysics Satellite to Advance Understanding of the Origins and Destinies
(Dulles, VA 13 June 2012) -- Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) announced that its Pegasus® rocket earlier today successfully launched the company-built Nuclear Spectroscopic Array Telescope (NuSTAR) satellite for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) into its intended orbit. Early results indicate that the NuSTAR satellite is operating as expected at this stage of its mission.
The Pegasus/NuSTAR mission originated from the U.S. Army's Reagan Test Site, Kwajalein Atoll, which is a part of the Marshall Islands in the mid-Pacific Ocean. Following a one-hour preplanned positioning flight, the Pegasus rocket was released from Orbital's L-1011 carrier aircraft at approximately 12:00 p.m. (EDT). After a 13-minute powered flight sequence, Pegasus launched the 770 lb. NuSTAR satellite into its targeted circular orbit approximately 400 miles above the Earth.
"We are very pleased to support NASA and JPL on this important scientific project," said Mr. Ron Grabe, Orbital's Executive Vice President and General Manager of its Launch Systems Group. "The NuSTAR program is another 'dual' mission for our launch vehicle and satellite engineering teams, building on our history of supporting successful NASA scientific programs such as AIM, GALEX, SORCE, ACRIMSAT and IBEX with our launch vehicles and satellite platforms."
About the NuSTAR Mission
During its mission, NuSTAR will use high-energy x-rays to detect black holes and other energetic phenomena in the universe with the purpose of expanding our understanding of the origins and destinies of stars and galaxies. NuSTAR will have more than one hundred times the sensitivity of previous instruments to detect black holes and will be the first focusing hard x-ray telescope in space.
Orbital provided a comprehensive mission support combination for the NuSTAR mission, including performing overall system integration of the payload with the company's LEOStar-2 satellite platform, and conducting the launch operations with its Pegasus air-launched rocket.
About the Pegasus Rocket
Orbital develops and manufactures small- and medium-class rockets and space systems for commercial, military and civil government customers. The company's primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-Earth orbit, geosynchronous-Earth orbit and planetary spacecraft for communications, remote sensing, scientific and defense missions; human-rated space systems for Earth-orbit, lunar and other missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense systems that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also provides satellite subsystems and space-related technical services to government agencies and laboratories. More information about Orbital can be found at http://www.orbital.com.
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