OBSS will introduce new technologies in a conservative manner such that there are alternative approaches or back ups, if required. Solar radiation pressure will be used to provide smooth precession of the rotation axis, thus avoiding frequent thruster burns. To the extent that the solar radiation pressure is variable, or does not result in the desired precession, thruster burns will be used. The mission is planned such that this will not prevent either the accomplishment of the baseline mission or the extended mission.

OBSS will use an large array of CCDs. While the use of such a large number of CCDs has not been previously accomplished in space, smaller arrays have been used in space on the HST, and a larger OBSS array has been used on the ground for the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The USNO has had experience with both applications, including performing the engineering for the SDSS array and for a smaller array designed for astrometry and photometry at the USNO Flagstaff Station.

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