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Teal Ruby (P80-1, AFP-888)

Teal Ruby [USAF]

Teal Ruby was a technology experiment to test new IR sensors for early warning satellites. Originally named P80-1 until December 1983 when it was renamed AFP-888 and its launch date became classified.

It has essentially a rectangular parallelepiped shape and approximate dimensions 2.4 × 2.4 × 0.7 m. The spacecraft is three-axis stabilized to maintain one 2.4 × 2.4 m surface vector pointing at the nadir. The spacecraft serves as a stable platform reference for three experiment telescopes. The spacecraft telemetry capability is PCM and it uses onboard tape recorders with up to 6 hours storage.

Originally to be launched on a Shuttle mission from Cape Canaveral with an two stage solid motor transfer stage, it was later moved to the first from Vandenberg. After the Challenger disaster it was put into storage. Later it was manifested for a 1990 launch from Cape Canaveral, but the project was finally cancelled in 1988. The satellite, still in storage, served as a laboratory for aging processes of space equipment.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Early warning technology
Operator: DARPA, USAF STP (Space Test Program)
Contractors: Rockwell, DARPA
Equipment: Cryogenic IR Telescope
Configuration: ?
Propulsion: ion engine thrusters
Power: Deployable solar array, batteries
Mass: 1940 kg
Orbit: 740 km × 740 km, 57 (CC launch), 70 (Va launch)
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Teal Ruby (P80-1, AFP-888) - cancelled CCK LC-39 Shuttle [kick stage]


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