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Mr. ROBACK. You are really afraid to to deal with this nuclear stuff, afraid you might get burned!
Mr. JAFFE. No, sir; I wouldn't put it that way. .
Mr. JAFFE. Our current rate of progress in the development of the reactor supply indicates that we will not have a reactor supply available to us of the SNAP-8 variety, which we think is a next generation type of power unit, until the end of the 1970's, and our plans, our internal plans are based on that assumption.
Mr. RoBACK. You want to leapfrog the isotope to the power reactor!
Mr. JAFFE. We have not found an economically attractive isotope supply at this stage of the game that would be acceptable to all concerned.
Mr. ROBACK. You said you had a feasibility study on the second generation ATS.
Mr. JAFFE. That is right.
Mr. ROBACK. Can you supply us, without too much difficulty, a list of all the contracts now outstanding and about to be let? Let us say the RFP's that have been put out for satellites, communication satellites, a list of the contracts, a brief description of what they propose to do, and the cost estimates, if available, of what the effort is going to cost?
Mr. JAFFE. Yes.
Mr. ROBACK. Just so we get a little idea of your imagination and variety. Mr. JAFFE. Yes, sir. (The list referred to follows:)
Summary of current and pending contracts concerning advanced communications
1. ITT Contract, “Modulation Techniques for Active Communication Satellites," NAS5–10123, $360K. Study and development of a time division multiplex approach to a multiple access communications satellite system.
2. RAND Contract, “Technological Studies and Operational Factors,” NASI 21 (02), $350K. Technical studies of communications satellite systems. Includes theoretical studies of modulation and multiplexing techniques for multiple access; stabilization and control systems for active and passive communications satellites; factors affecting orbital control.
3. SSC Contract NASW-1216, “Studies of Communications Satellite Systems," $98K. Studies of time division multiple access systems applicable to small terminal communications; studies of interference prediction techniques, broadcast satellite subsystem studies.
4. G. E. Co. NASW-1475, $125K; RCA YASW-1476, $125K. “Voice Broadcast Satellite Mission Studies.” Two independent studies of short wave and frequency modulation broadcasting of aural program material.
5. Radiation Applications Inc. NAS5–3923, $130K, “Development of a Prototype Plastic Space Erectable Satellite." Develops irradiated polyethylene as a lightweight photolyzable structural material for passive communication satellites.
6. G. T. Schjeldahl Co. NAS5–3943, $135K, "Development of a 425 Foot Diameter Passive Communication Satellite with Self-erecting Properties."
7. AoTech Corp. Contract Pending, $SJK, “Millimeter Wave Steerable Antenna Studies and Development.” Studies spacecraft beam forming and steering techniques for the range 30 to 100 gcs.
8. B. T. L. "Deep Space Communications and Navigation System Comparison and Tradeoff Study,” Contract Pending. Study of advantages of alternative approaches to deep space communications.
9. Raytheon Co. NAS5-9523 $144K, “Millimeter Wave Propagation Studies."
10. “REP for Millimeter Wave Experiment" estimate $800K. Design and fabricate engineering and prototype models of spacecraft equipment for a propagation experiments at 16 and 35 GHZ.
11. NASW-1412, Lockheed Missiles and Space Company, CPFF $137,477.
Six month feasibility studies to set forth details necessary for planning and development of ATS-F and G Mission, the primary objective of which is development of capability to place in geostationary orbit and experiment with a large spacecraft containing a 30' diameter parabolic antenna good to 10 GHz, a multibeam high gain phased array antenna, a precision interferometer, and an attitude control system good to +.1° in three axes.
Mr. DahliN. Are the minutes of the TCCS meeting of August 22 and 23 available yet?
Mr. JAFFE. No.
Mr. Dahlin. Will you supply them to the committee when they are available, please?
Mr. JAFFE. Yes.
(The minutes referred to were scheduled to be available early in October.)
Mr. Dahlin. Mr. Sohier, from the standpoint of NASA, was there a delay in the NCS filling your requirements and approving your proposals with respect to this whole pollo communications business?
Mr. SOHIER. If you are talking from the time that we were authorized to go ahead and start negotiations, I would not say so.
Mr. Dahlin. No; before that, before you got approval to go ahead.
Mr. SOHIER. Well, there was considerable study conducted, and that took time, so that there was delay. I don't think we are critical of the delay. We participated very much in the studies to see what alternatives there were.
Mr. Dahlin. I wasn't asking you if you were critical. Was there a delay which interfered with any of your planning and preparation for Apollo communications and Apollo missions?
Mr. SOHIER. I don't think so. I think that with the exception of the slight delay that Comsat itself has undergone technically in the spacecraft, getting it ready, I think we are in shape to meet the requirement.
Mr. DAHLIN. And you believe that all of the alternatives have now been fully studied; that is, for contingencies or for all alternative needs of supplying the same services if anything goes wrong?
Mr. SOHIER. We studied it with great care. Mr. Buckley chaired a joint NASA-DOD group that looked at all the alternatives, and we looked at them in-house as well, and I think the answer to that is "Yes, that we have looked thoroughly at the other ways of getting the communications requirement met."
NAVIGATION AND AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL SATELLITES
Mr. ROBACK. Mr. Jaffe mentioned the emphasis given to the navigation satellite and the interest of FAA. Is this research and development that the FAA should be doing or is this R. & D. that you are doing in cooperation with them, or what? You know they had some kind of discussions with Comsat.
Mr. JAFFE. Yes, sir.
Mr. JAFFE. It is research and development, specifically, we are doing in cooperation with them. The FAA is involved in the program cooperatively with us.
Mr. ROBACK. Is this a research and development problem now, or is this now one that you can build, a system for traffic control, navigation or multipurpose, or whatever?
Mr. JAFFE. In my opinion, it is definitely a research and development problem. We have not developed the techniques for communicating from a spacecraft to a very complicated aircraft, and certainly not in large quantities.
Mr. ROBACK. What was Comsat offering to do? Is that a research and development program?
Mr. JAFFE. Comsat was offering to deliver, I believe, one or two channels of capability from a spacecraft to an aircraft.
Mr. ROBACK. You were the technical adviser to Comsat on that. Did you tell them that it was too far out?
Mr. JAFFE. We were not asked to advise on this particular issue.
Mr. ROBACK. Do you mean to say that you weren't consulted on this even though you are the repository of research and development information on the subject?
Mr. JAFFE. Comsat was aware of our early experiments involving Syncom and our plans on the ATS program. Mr. ROBACK. Did FAA come to you? Mr. JAFFE. Yes, they did. Mr. ROBACK. After Comsat, or before? Mr. JAFFE. They talked to us about their discussions with Comsat. Mr. ROBACK. What did you tell them?
Mr. JAFFE. We told them that it was feasible to do an experiment involving one or two channels. That this was in essense what we were talking about doing with the ATS series of spacecraft and the VHF transponder, and they agreed to cooperate with us in the use of that transponder in the experimental program.
Mr. ROBACK. In other words, you could do it for them for free rather than having to hire Comsat, that is free from the standpoint of the FAA?
Mr. JAFFE. It was being done and had been in the plan long before the submission.
Mr. ROBACK. They weren't going to learn any more from Comsat on the contract that they considered entering into than you were proposing to do for them.
Mr. JAFFE. From an experimental standpoint, the answer is right. They were not going to learn any more.
Mr. ROBACK. That is what we are talking about, an experiment, because they must have known what you just said-you are not ready for a system.
Mr. JAFFE. I think we are not ready for a system. I think the FAA discussions were in the terms of the context of making available on an operational basis one or two channels. When I say that I don't think we are ready for a system, I feel that the problem is broader than just one or two channels of voice communications with an aircraft.
Mr. ROBACK. What is the problem, briefly?
Mr. JAFFE. The problem is one of not only providing communications to an aircraft, but providing for position determination of these
aircraft and being able to convey this information to some useful traffic control system.
Mr. ROBACK. Isn't the position information already available through satellites?
Mr. JAFFE. No, it is not.
Mr. ROBACK. Doesn't the Navy have a navigation system which has position-finding capability?
Mr. JAFFE. It has not been developed to be used with aircraft operationally. Mr. ROBACK. That is only with ships. Mr. JAFFE. That is my understanding.
Mr. ROBACK. What relationship do you have with the Navy on navigation !
Mr. JAFFE. We are also evaluating the Navy's navigation system in terms of its potential use to nonmilitary systems, such as the air traffic control system.
Mr. ROBACK. You are talking about maritime use?
Mr. JAFFE. No, I am talking about aircraft use as well. We are looking at that one and we are looking at other systems.
Mr. ROBACK. Does the Navy have a satellite system for navigation which applies to aircraft?
Mr. JAFFE. They have a satellite system which was primarily designed for the navigation of ships. It has been used, and they are experimenting with its utility to aircraft. However, this has not yet been demonstrated to the extent that one can be satisfied that this is a solution for nonmilitary operational use.
Mr. ROBACK. Is NASA in the role; I mean, were you requested to evaluate this?
Mr. JAFFE. We are in the role of an evaluator of the nonmilitary use of the Navy's navigation satellite.
Mr. ROBACK. Therefore, you went to the Navy and said: “Let us look at this for nonmilitary purposes."
Mr. JAFFE. Specifically, to date we have requested the use of that satellite for nonmilitary use and assessment, for shipboard use, and we are following very closely the Navy's experiments with aircraft.
Mr. ROBACK. And have you made any findings?
Mr. JAFFE. Yes, we have. At this particular time there seems to be, and our studies have shown that there are systems that look as though they might be more economical to use for nonmilitary purposes. However, I must add that the Navy is, and their contractors are continuing to make improvements in the use of that system, so that it may become a contender.
Nr. ROBACK. Is NASA in effect being an intermediary which can move this classified information into the public domain for possible use?
Mr. JAFFE. I think it is being effectively released, yes.
Mr. ROBACK. In other words, if it weren't for your intermediation, all this information wouldn't necessarily be available to commercial and other agencies?
Mr. JAFFE. I don't think that is quite the way it should be said. Mr. ROBACK. Well, some of it.
Mr. JAFFE. The Navy is releasing this information as I think it is appropriate. It is being made available, yes.
Mr. ROBACK. In other words, they are releasing it generally in the public domain.
Mr. JAFFE. Yes.
Mr. ROBACK. Do you have a report on your evaluation of the Mary satellite?
Mr. JAFFE. We have some reports written to us.
Mr. RoBACK. Can you give us a representative, recent report to show what your opinion of it is?
Mr. JAFFE. We have reports which have been submitted to us by the nonmilitary shipboard users who have evaluated the Navy's system, yes. I can submit those.
Mr. RoBACK. Can you supply those ?
(The report referred to was furnished for the use of the subcommittee.)
Mr. RoBACK. Do you have any reports, do you have any correspondence with FAĂ which throws light on your relationship with them and the possible use of the navigation or traffic control satellite?
Mr. JAFFE. Yes.
Mr. ROBACK. Have you examined the correspondence and can you supply that which you think will illuminate the record ?
Mr. JAFFE. Yes.
JULY 5, 1966.
DEAR MR. ADAMS: At the last meeting of the NASA/FAA Coordinating Committee, held on June 1, you reiterated an earlier request that the FAA provide NASA with specific requirements for a worldwide navigation system to serve as guidance in assessing technical feasibility, cost, accuracy, etc., and provide trade-off type information.
The principal interest of the FAA, and its counterpart in other countries, in long distance navigation is the ability of controlled aircraft to follow a prescribed path on a prescribed time schedule with sufficient accuracy to provide for the safe, efficient utilization of the airspace by all aircraft desiring to use it. With the rapid increase in air traffic in the recent past and the continued increase anticipated in the future, and because of the high speeds of modern aircraft and the even higher speed predicted, it becomes increasingly important that the pilot have direct output in terms of steering and schedule information, with ability to feed this directly into aircraft controls.
A subsystem of this type, perhaps utilizing in some yet undefined manner the integrated outputs of several separate aids, bears close relationship to other subsystems. Adequate, reliable communications with effective independent surveillance capability, for instance, may lessen the need for accuracy or reliability of navigation, or vice versa.
In 1964 the FAA completed a study (SPANAT) recommending improvements in the present North Atlantic system to make it capable of meeting requirements into the early 1970's. A copy of the report of this study has been forwarded to NASA. The FAA is now about to undertake a one-year study to define performance characteristics required in oceanic and remote area air traffic systems on a worldwide basis in the post-1975 time period. Possible roles for satellites will be