This paper will concern itself with the reliability aspects of the ABRES feasibility programs. A specific example of the Athena program will address booster and data acquisition system reliability improvement. In addition to typical reliability practices, strong management control and examination of the hardware, procedures and design compromises resulted in a continuous reliability growth during the course of the program. The criticality of payloads obtaining good payload test data from very few and expensive flights requires an entirely different approach for the reliability aspects of these systems. Finally, some specific thoughts and techniques employed to achieve the enviable record for this program will be described.