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The project is to develop two large variants of the mechanical platform of the EADS Astrium Eurostar 3000 telecommunications spacecraft, designated as E3000LX and E3000L. The aim of the programme is enable the Eurostar 3000 family to serve markets in the larger and heavier spacecraft sector.
The development will include all tasks necessary to create fully designed and qualified products ready for immediate application to flight programmes. A significant element of the development is the design and qualification of an improved bonded joint for the central cone / cylinder capable.
Two variants will be developed:-
The major challenges and key issues in this project:
The main benefits from this project are shared between the need to extend the product range and the desire to improve the performance of the bonded joints across the entire E3000 product line.
The E3000 product range has increased from 5.8 tonnes to 6.4 tonnes enabling access to markets requiring large payloads up to 14kW. The E3000LX product also accommodates the standard plasma production system (PPS) which improves the on station life.
The respected heritage of the E3000 platform is valid on the LX and L variants due to the similarity of design, equipment and build.
The new design has resulted in reduced in jig build times and has contributed to a 20% increase to the build capacity at Stevenage.
Main Hardware Changes on L – LX
Key development activities required:
The project has been successfully completed and orders have been awarded for both the E3000L and E3000LX variants.