posted on Aug, 8 2006 @ 01:05 PM
Originally posted by warpboost
I was wondering if someone will ever build a private commercial spy sattelite? Would you even be allowed to?
To put a standard communications sat in orbit is a very expensive undertaking - somewhere north of 250 million USD (not including insurance); a
topographic surveillance sat costs a little more depending on optics (I believe IKONOS has 1 meter resolution, you can call that a "spy sat" if you
like, but it's not);
That said, to fly a real spy sat
that has better than 5 cm resolution optics and has real time imaging is easily going to cost way over 500
million USD, and could easily cost 1 to 1.5 billion USD depending on optics and "other" technologies.
Also you must consider the actual flight to orbit - who is going to put it up? Ariane? Russian Federal Space, Japan Aerospace "JAXA"? Loral
launching out of Vandenberg's Complex-2 West? etc...
Also, seeing that this is a "spy sat", how secret do you want to keep the fact that this is a hi-res ISR payload? Because somebody with the
organization you use is going to have to know the functionality of the bird and if you think "they" are going to keep it a secret from their
controlling government, you would be mistaken.
[edit on 8-8-2006 by intelgurl]