SpaceDev provides Technologies for the Mercantile Astronautics

by Jim Benson

The MST-21TM

SpaceDev and Wireless Future to Develop MST-21TM Low Cost Miniature STDN S-Band Transponder for Space Missions.

Lightweight Transponder to be Compatible with NASA STDN and Commercial Ground Stations.

(Poway, California - March 27, 2000) - SpaceDev (OTCBB: SPDVE) and Wireless Future, Inc. announced today that they will jointly develop and market a next-generation, miniaturized, low-cost STDN-compatible transponder (the MST-21TM), for use on government and commercial lunar and earth-orbiting missions. The first MST-21 will fly on the CHIPSat spacecraft currently under development by SpaceDev for the University of California Berkeley. CHIPSat is scheduled for launch in the spring of 2002 from Cape Canaveral on a Boeing (NYSE: BA) Delta-II launch vehicle. The MST-21 can also be used for a variety of other missions, including SpaceDev's proposed live, streaming video lunar entertainment and science orbiter, and for its planned commercial near-earth asteroid exploration mission.

The MST-21 is intended for usage in typical Telemetry, Tracking and Control operations of orbiting satellites, and is configured for digital applications up to 1.5 Mbps. The transmitter section uses linear phase modulation allowing users to receive proprietary baseband waveforms. This important feature gives the MST-21 unparalleled flexibility in space-based applications.

The MST-21 is designed to operate over a wide range of supply voltages, provides coherent receiver-to-transmitter operation upon command, and incorporates coherent ranging capability to allow for precision navigation. Specified by SpaceDev to be fully compatible with NASA's worldwide Space Tracking and Data Network (STDN), and with commercial ground station providers with STDN capability, the MST-21 weighs just under 1 kg, and measures only 17 x 11 x 5 cm (about 7 x 4 x 2 inches). With an efficient 30% solid state power amplifier (SSPA), the MST-21 incorporates commandable power output settings, ensuring its flexibility to accommodate variable link conditions and to support a wide variety of earth-orbit and near-earth missions. Testing will be performed to ensure compatibility with a range of launch vehicle and space thermal and radiation environments.

Speaking of this new agreement, Theo Maxey, President and CTO of Wireless Future, Inc. said, "Humankind has evolved into an informed and mobile creature, depending on diverse, instant communications. Affordable connectivity through space-based hardware is a logical step in our evolution. Together with SpaceDev, Wireless Future is establishing the new paradigm for affordable access to space communications through this first in a series of products."

"The demand for more affordable and capable space communications products cannot be overstated," added Stan Dubyn, President and Chief Operating Officer of SpaceDev. "We're excited to jointly develop and market the MST-21 with Wireless Future. This product will help to further unlock access to space for science, technology, civil, and commercial missions, with worldwide accessibility, NASA STDN compatibility, and affordability."

About SpaceDev

SpaceDev offers low-cost commercial missions and spacecraft for lunar orbiters, Mars orbiters and probe carriers, and asteroid rendezvous and landers for sale as turnkey, fixed price, commercial products, a first for the space industry. Also a first, SpaceDev offers fixed-price package delivery for science instruments and technology demonstrations into earth orbit, deep space and to other planetary bodies. SpaceDev designs and sells small, low-cost Earth-orbiting commercial or research satellites. SpaceDev has recently designed inexpensive orbital transfer vehicles, and secondary payload micro-kick motors for the Air Force. SpaceDev has acquired hybrid sounding rocket, motor, and launch vehicle designs, and intellectual property rights produced by the former American Rocket Company (AMROC).

Established in 1997, SpaceDev ( is the world's first commercial space exploration and development company. SpaceDev's corporate offices are located near San Diego in Poway, Calif. SpaceDev and The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), the world's largest aerospace company, recently announced that they have teamed together to investigate opportunities of mutual strategic interest in the commercial deep-space arena.

Forward-Looking Statements. The foregoing press release includes numerous forward-looking statements concerning the company's business and future prospects and other similar statements that do not concern matters of historical fact. Forward- looking statements in this press release relating to product development, business prospects and development of a commercial market for technological advances are based on the company's current expectations. The company's current expectations are subject to all of the uncertainties and risks customarily associated with new business ventures including, but not limited to, market conditions, successful product development and acceptance, competition and overall economic conditions, as well as the risk of adverse regulatory actions. The company's actual results may differ materially from current expectations. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The company disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or for any other reason.

For more information: Jim Benson, 858-375-2020

P.S. For status on our trading symbol, please check our home page at

Commercial Space Products & Services LEO & GEO Comm Sats, Micro-kick motors Asteroid, Lunar and Mars Missions Small Spacecraft & Launch Vehicle Design


JB - TDF 2/2000 - 30/04/2000