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Public Domain involvement in Aerospace

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Rollo Ross

Aug 2, 1989, 11:24:33 AM8/2/89

The South Australian company Australian Launch Vehicles is progressing
well with its proposal for a low cost, unmanned, nonmilitary rocket to
launch light satellites into low earth orbit. Significant commitment
from engineering companies, component manufacturers and potential
customers - both locally and internationally - indicate that the
innovative concept has sufficient support to carry it through to

The simplicity of the design is such that the computational requirements
will be within the power of a modern personal computer. Until recently
it was assumed that the software needed for this computer (and also for
the modest ground control installations) would be produced by one of the
many commercial companies able to do so.

However, it has been suggested that the software needs and other
computing related issues could be better met by a coordinated effort in
the international public domain. Software so produced would remain
within the public domain, freely accessible to any interested parties.


1) Express your opinions of the general principle of involving
the public computing community at all levels of this complex project,

2) Submit any ideas you may have on how the logistics of such an
operation might be managed, perhaps covering such things as project
managment strategies, networks involved, possible processing sites, and
the like.

3) Make any other comments you feel to be relevant.

Please Note: It is thought that if this idea goes ahead the
development would proceed in some sort of stage system, with (for
instance) the hardware/operating system needs being discussed and
decided on in one stage, languages in another, and so on. This means
that it is not really appropriate (yet) to contribute to the discussion
your thoughts on specific details. The organisational structure must be
sorted out first.

The future of this very exciting software development project depends
entirely on your response to this message; the concept has never been
tried on such a scale before and if Australian Launch Vehicles is not
quickly convinced it has the full support of the public domain the idea
will be dropped immediately.

Comprehensive details on all aspects of the launch system (covering
the propulsion system, autopilot, ground installations required,
positive and negative environmental aspects, and so on) will be made
available if enough interest is shown.

Australian Launch Vehicles has deliberately set out to take rocket
technology from the realm of vastly expensive militarily or politically
motivated operations to a smaller, commercially viable service. This
means that public domain involvement fits in well with their philosphy
- but they cannot afford to wait for interest to gradually build up.

This message has been approved by the company, and given the widest
possible distribution throughout the world in English, French and German
- please help to pass it on in any way you can.

It's up to you, computing public.
(This message is posted on behalf of an Institute student who has been
in touch with Australian Launch Vehicles in South Australia's
Technology Park. Mailed replies can be sent to him, Dan Shearer, or The original
Fidonet message included the following alternative address:

> Until enough feedback is available to allow a decision to be made,
>Martin Crockett of the S.A. Country BBS has arranged to receive and
>collate all replies. His FIDONet address is 3:681/853 - IF YOU HAVE A

Rollo Ross, Network Manager

Comp Centre, Sth Aust Institute of Technology, The Levels, SA 5095, Australia
Voice: +61 8 343 3158 Old way: Rollo...@levels.sait.oz{.au}
Fax: 349 6939 DTE 505282622004 Standard way:

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