COLORADO SPRINGS, April 9 (UPI) -- A U.S. aerospace company is developing a line of small satellite prototypes for rapid manufacture and configuration for specific missions.
Boeing said the Phantom Phoenix prototypes will share common architecture, flight software and integrated payload options, suitable for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions as well as science.
"Our customers need greater mission flexibility from smaller satellites that can be built more affordably, and delivered more quickly, without sacrificing quality," said Boeing Phantom Works President Darryl Davis. "Building upon the success Boeing has had with expanding our 702 satellite family, we've rapidly developed a line of satellites to address the market between large geosynchronous spacecraft and nano-satellites."
Boeing said Phantom Phoenix will come in three variants: the Phantom Phoenix, the Phantom Phoenix ESPA and the Phantom Phoenix Nano.
The Phantom Phoenix, weighing between 1,102 pounds and 2,204 pounds for single and dual launch; Phantom Phoenix ESPA, which attaches to a common inter-stage adapter for the launch of more than one satellite at a time; and the Phantom Phoenix Nano, a nano-satellite weighing between 8.8 and 22 pounds for science and weather missions.
The satellites will be designed for use on all major launch vehicle types, the company said.
"Boeing has been providing quality satellites to our global customers for over five decades," said Bruce Chesley, director of Advanced Space & Intelligence Systems. "The Phantom Phoenix prototypes are designed to give our commercial and government customers affordable, agile solutions to address the ever-evolving market and mission requirements."