Moorestown NJ (SPX) Jul 03, 2009
The U.S. Air Force has awarded Lockheed Martin a $30 million contract to begin concept development for Space Fence, a system of land-based S-Band radars and supporting operations centers that will detect and report on objects and debris orbiting the Earth. Lockheed Martin was one of three industry teams to receive contracts.
The Air Force Materiel Command's Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts leads the procurement for Space Fence, which is intended to significantly enhance space situational awareness as legacy systems in the Space Surveillance Network (SSN) are retired.
Under the contract, a Lockheed Martin-led industry team will perform prototyping, design, trade studies and analysis of potential system configurations, concluding with a system design review and final prototyping demonstration. The contract also includes site and facility surveys, and planning and development of net-centric approaches to integrate with the existing architecture of the SSN.
The remaining effort - through preliminary design review, system development, deployment and follow-on support - will be the subject of future competitive procurements. The new system's Initial Operational Capability is scheduled for 2015.
The Lockheed Martin-led team, which includes General Dynamics, AT and T and AMEC, has decades of collective experience in space-related programs including sensors, mission-processing, cataloging, orbital mechanics, net-centric communications and facilities.
A leader in S-Band radar development and production, with more than 100 operational systems deployed worldwide, Lockheed Martin supports a range of critical space command and control programs and contributes to national-level space-related intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. General Dynamics is an industry-leading developer and provider of mission processing systems and complex antennas and radar structures for space surveillance.
AT and T is a leading systems engineering developer of orbital mechanics and astrodynamics for operational space surveillance and space control. AMEC is highly experienced in domestic and international design along with engineering services and construction for the U.S. government.
"The ability to detect and to track smaller objects in space will significantly improve mission support for U.S. Air Force space operations in an increasingly complex domain," said Ms. Linda Haines, Space Fence Program Manager for the Air Force Materiel Command.
"Space Fence will provide a fully-integrated, net-centric radar 'system of systems' that will allow information to be shared on the Global Information Grid with space operators across the community," noted Carl Bannar, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin's radar business headquartered in Syracuse, NY.
"Lockheed Martin will build on our long and established partnership with the Air Force to support operational commanders in meeting the ever-increasing challenges of space situational awareness with a capable, responsive and affordable enterprise solution."
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Space Technology News - Applications and Research
Bethesda MD (SPX) Jun 29, 2009
Launchspace is seriously looking at the increasing risk of space debris interfering with operational satellites in a proactive way. Although no one knows when this will turn into a crisis, we do know it will happen, unless the world stops using space applications. But, the benefits of space are simply too important and they have become an integral part of modern living. The options seem obvious. ... read more
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