ARES provides operations development and support for major DoD and civil space missions, including launch range support, launch site integration, payload operations, and hardware recovery.

Launch Site Infrastructure and Operations

As prime contractor for the KLXS-III contract in support of NASA’s Exploration Ground Systems (EGS) Program at Kennedy Space Center, ARES provides operations development, interface management, flight vehicle processing planning, and ground segment and facilities management support. We directly support maintenance and preparation of the KSC launch infrastructure, provide work planning and verification artifact development, coordinate scheduling of operations, and develop risk-informed alternatives to accommodate issues that invariably materialize. We supported EGS development, integration, and operation of the ground infrastructure system that successfully launched and recovered Artemis I and are supporting the upgrades required for future Artemis missions.

Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center

On-Orbit Operations Support

ARES provides on-orbit operations support for NASA human spaceflight and DoD technology spacecraft. We support on-orbit science mission operations for ISS through our participation in the NASA/MSFC Mission Operations & Integration (MO&I) contract and it’s follow-on, the Marshall Operations, Systems, Services and Integration II (MOSSI II) contract. Our efforts include mission preparation, crew and flight controller training, and real-time operations requirements support for spaceflight operations for all phases of flight. ARES supports mission safety functions, including Payload Safety Review Panels, analyses to maintain hazard controls and safe operations, independent safety verification reviews of Payload Operations Data File procedures, safety training, and development and maintenance of the Payload Hazard Control Matrix. ARES also provides Launch and Early Orbit Operations (LEOPS) support for AFRL technology spacecraft at Kirtland AFB.

Launch Range Maintenance, Upgrade, and Operations

On the Launch and Test Range System (LTRS) Integrated Support Contract (LISC), ARES supports range and launch operations at both Patrick SFB, FL (SLD45) and Vandenberg SFB, CA (SLD30). We provide operations and sustaining engineering for LTRS subsystems including, Command Destruct, Communications, Data Handling, Flight Safety, Optics, Planning and Scheduling, Radar, Surveillance, Timing and Sequencing, Telemetry, and Weather. ARES personnel coordinate and schedule planning and implementation actions with the Range Offices ensuring the delivering of key range and mission documentation, analyses, and reports to meet required operational need dates. Our staff assesses flight hardware for compliance with Range Safety test requirements and provide Range Safety System Support and Analysis assessments. ARES assists in preparation and delivery of Communications Console Operations Guides and Launch Books supporting Range mission and mission system operations. We prepare range operating instructions, including integrated Countdown Documentation. Our support has contributed to the recent outstanding range availability and unprecedented increases in launch rates, particularly from the Eastern Range. As government and commercial launch cadence continues to grow, we to support range infrastructure and process improvements to facilitate further launch rate increases and work with the 45SLD and 30SLD to incorporate the Range of the Future plans.

Recovery Operations

As major subcontractor to ManTech on the Human Space Flight Support (HSFS) contract, ARES supports development and execution of CONOPs, timelines, and technical assistance to SLD45 Det 3’s mission providing recovery services for government and commercial crewed space missions. We provide mission operations planning, training, and mission execution efforts for recovery, retrieval, and rescue operations. Our personnel assess and evaluate the crew vehicle configurations, changes, and planning, development, and verification actions. We support development of operational and tactical requirements and concepts, logistical support, and forward planned actions. We prepare, evaluate, and deliver CONOPs, detailed operational procedures, tactics, and mission-related practices, including underway, in-pool NBL and open water test demonstrations and training exercises, ensuring readiness to successfully execute nominal and contingency mission-related space vehicle recovery and astronaut rescue operations. Our efforts paid off in the completely successful recovery of the Orion capsule following completion of the Artemis I mission.