Functional and design concepts, and a number of promising scenarios for use of a low-cost, simple Orbital Transfer Vehicle (OTV) are presented in this paper to help provide the rationale for developing such a vehicle for near-term use in supporting and extending the mission life of valuable space assets. A principal factor in reducing development and production costs is the suitability of a basic OTV bus vehicle for many of the applications considered. Special attachments can be added, in a retrofit mode, to be used in future, more demanding service applications. Use in supporting large satellite constellations in an emergency standby mode, with one OTV being assigned to each of the constellation’s orbit planes, requires numerous such vehicles in operation simultaneously. Preliminary cost estimates, a development schedule, and a list of principal maneuver performance requirements support this discussion.
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Meissinger, H.F., J.T. Collins. AIAA Space Technology Conference and Exposition. September 1999, Albuquerque, New Mexico.