SBIRS Continues

by: Matthew Potter
June 8, 2009

Category: Business Line, Companies, Congress, Contract Awards, Department of Defense, development program, Events, Lockheed Martin, MDA, missile defense, S&T, Satellites, Services, U.S. Air Force | RSS 2.0

sbirs-10-8-08-a-em_smallgifThe troubled Space Based Infra-Red System (SBIRS) satellite based detection system program has had its highs and lows over the last fifteen years or so. The constellation of satellites will be used to provide detection of missile launches across the globe and will replace the original DSP system. SBIRS is divided into high and low systems and has suffered from cost and schedule problems over its lifetime.

There is no denying that the aging DSP satellites need replacing and the Air Force and the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) have worked hard to keep the SBIRS program going over the years despite criticism from Congress, various Presidential Administrations and outside groups.

On the 2nd of June Lockheed Martin announced that they had received a contract for the third high satellite of that constellation. This $1.5 billion contract will be for the payload, satellite and ground control systems. The launch will be paid for out of a different contract. To date two payloads are in space and the first two satellites are in development with the first planned launch sometime in 2010.

Photo from Lockheed Martin.

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