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ORBIT Communication Systems and Inmarsat sign MOA for Global Xpress ® government aero terminals opportunities — Press Release

3 July, 2014 – Inmarsat, the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services and ORBIT, a leading provider of satellite communication, Earth observation, tracking & telemetry and communication management systems, have entered into a Memorandum of Arrangement (MOA) regarding the manufacture of aviation terminals for Global Xpress (GX) serving the government market. GX is the next generation of global mobile broadband services operating in Ka-band, strengthening Inmarsat’s position as the world leader in global mobile satellite communications.

Inmarsat and ORBIT will work closely to identify specific opportunities in which ORBIT’s technical offering is best suited to driving the uptake of GX by end-users requiring airborne satellite broadband connectivity.  Under the arrangement, ORBIT will provide airborne tracking and communication GX antenna terminals, addressing further prospects identified in the government market, including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and fixed and rotary wing platforms.

“We are delighted to be announcing this new collaboration with ORBIT,” said Andy Start, President, Inmarsat Global Government. “Global Xpress offers significant opportunities in the Government aviation market, providing the world’s first global high-speed broadband service, which is capable of supporting the most advanced, bandwidth hungry applications virtually anywhere in the world.”

“ORBIT is proud to be part of this important alliance with Inmarsat. Inmarsat’s selection of ORBIT’s products is a vote of confidence in our Ka-Band VSAT antennas solutions and excellent rapport with the Government sector worldwide”, said Ofer Greenberger, the Chairman of ORBIT -CS, Inc., and CEO of ORBIT-CS, Ltd.

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Airbus invites partners to test mission payloads with Zephyr 8 ‘Pseudo-Satellite’

April 25, 2014 by · Comment
Filed under: space, Syndicated Industry News 

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Israel Launches OFEQ 10 Spy Satellite

April 9, 2014 by · Comment
Filed under: IAI, Israel, space, Syndicated Industry News 

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User testing begins on Third AEHF satellite as ultra-secure communications payload activated for first time — Press Release

Flawless Journey to Orbit Used Industry’s Most Powerful Electric Propulsion System

SUNNYVALE, Calif., March 26, 2014The third Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellite has begun transmitting using its protected communications payload, joining two other satellites undergoing system test in orbit with a suite of user terminals. AEHF satellites are produced by Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] for the U.S. Air Force.

Launched on Sept. 18, 2013, AEHF-3 arrived in its final orbit position and began transmissions in January. The first two satellites have been doing well in limited user testing, and other nations are now using the system. Canada and the Netherlands connected in 2013, and an announcement of a first connection by the United Kingdom is expected this year. Now the third satellite will increase capacity and coverage as the international partners grow their user testing community.

“First transmissions on AEHF-3 were exactly what we expected, and orbit-raising was a textbook example of how to deliver a satellite to geostationary orbit,” said Mark Calassa, vice president of Protected Communication Systems at Lockheed Martin. “The satellite’s journey after launch went precisely as planned. We took advantage of the industry’s highest thrust electric propulsion, which was used during 95 percent of the transfer orbit period.”

AEHF is a hybrid spacecraft that uses both chemical and Hall Current Thruster electric propulsion to arrive at its geostationary position. Lockheed Martin has continually evolved and improved its electric propulsion for 30 years on the company’s A2100 satellite buses. Using electric propulsion helps satellites efficiently and precisely arrive on station and maintain their orbit positions.

AEHF is the most secure communications satellite system used by the U.S government. Its jam-proof communications are resilient against enemy forces, including nuclear attack, and a single satellite provides greater capacity than the entire legacy five-satellite Milstar constellation. AEHF’s five-fold increase in data rates speed up secure, survivable tactical military communications, such as real-time video, battlefield maps and targeting data, and improve links for national leaders and troops alike.

The four-nation AEHF program is led by the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., with international partners Canada, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Lockheed Martin is under contract to deliver the Mission Control Segment and six AEHF satellites, which are assembled at the company’s Sunnyvale, Calif., facility.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 115,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.

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Lockheed Martin-BUILT WEATHER Satellite ENCAPSULATED For Upcoming Launch — Press Release

DMSP Satellite Will Improve Military, Civil Weather Warning

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., March 20, 2014 – A Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) satellite built by Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] has been encapsulated into its payload fairing in preparation for an April 3 liftoff. The launch will take place aboard an Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 3 East at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

DMSP satellites collect data that enables military forecasters to find, track and forecast weather systems all over the globe, particularly in remote and hostile areas for deployed troops. Additionally, DMSP supports a broad range of civil users with sensing capabilities not provided by U.S. civil and international weather satellite systems.

“Weather guides some of the most important decisions in the armed forces, from flight patterns to troop movements. Through DMSP, we’re helping to provide safer, successful military missions,” said Sue Stretch, DMSP program director at Lockheed Martin. “Our satellite build and test process went flawlessly. As we approach launch, we are ready to continue serving this mission for the military and civil agencies that depend on it.”

DMSP satellites fulfill the country’s most critical requirements for global atmospheric, oceanic, terrestrial and space environment information. DMSP-19 is the fourth Block 5D-3 version to be launched, and Lockheed Martin has produced more than 40 satellites throughout the program’s 50-year history. Many of the satellites are performing beyond their design life, so refreshing on-orbit capability is important for reliable weather information.

DMSP-19 is equipped with a sophisticated sensor suite that can capture visible and infrared cloud cover; measure precipitation, surface temperature and soil moisture; and collect specialized global meteorological, oceanographic and solar-geophysical information in all weather conditions.

The approaching launch is the first in five years for DMSP. The previous one was October 18, 2009, when DMSP-18 joined the constellation. The DMSP program is led by the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., and control is provided by a joint team of the U.S. Air Force and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Suitland, Md. All DMSP satellites were integrated and tested at the Lockheed Martin Space Systems facility in Sunnyvale, Calif.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 115,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.

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Northrop Grumman’s Astro Aerospace Delivers Antennas For Next-Generation GPS III Satellites 3 through 6 — Press Release

CARPINTERIA, Calif., March 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Continuing its support for the U.S. Air Force’s Global Positioning System (GPS), Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) has delivered 32 self-deploying, monopole JIB antennas for the third, fourth, fifth and sixth GPS III satellites.

The company’s Astro Aerospace strategic business unit delivered the antennas to Lockheed Martin, which leads the industry team developing GPS III satellites in Littleton, Colo. Once installed, eight JIB antennas on each GPS III satellite will deploy to form an RF antenna array.

This is the delivery of the first 32 antennas supporting the third through sixth GPS III space vehicles out of 48 total antennas on order for GPS III space vehicles three through eight. Sixteen more JIB antennas will be delivered in early 2014, according to Dan Johansen, Astro Aerospace Program Manager.

“Astro Aerospace has delivered more than 1,000 JIB assemblies altogether for GPS IIF, GPS IIR and GPS III spacecraft, all with a 100 percent on orbit success rate,” said Johansen. “The antennas we supply are designed to help Lockheed Martin and the Air Force meet affordability and mission assurance goals for the next generation of GPS satellites.”

The GPS III program will affordably replace aging GPS satellites, while improving capability to meet the evolving demands of military, commercial and civilian users. GPS III satellites will deliver three times better accuracy; provide up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities; and include enhancements which extend spacecraft life 25 percent further than the prior GPS block. The GPS III also will carry a new civil signal designed to be interoperable with other international global navigation satellite systems, enhancing civilian user connectivity.

The JIB antenna is a stored energy monopole that deploys typically in 200 milliseconds. The stowed package is one of the smallest available and most compact for a deployable antenna of a given size. The unit is adaptable and comes in diameters from 0.25″ up to 2″ for impedance matching and in lengths from 12 inches to 25 feet.

Astro Aerospace, a pioneer of space deployable structure technologies, has a perfect record of on-orbit deployments since it was founded in 1958. Having delivered hardware for hundreds of spaceflight missions, it operates under the Aerospace Products group that offers a broad set of mature, proven and affordable products and services. For additional information about Astro Aerospace please visit www.northropgrumman.com/AerospaceProducts

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.

SOURCE Northrop Grumman Corporation

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Inmarsat selects Northrop Grumman to provide spectrum monitoring for Global Xpress ® government users — Press Release

SINGAPORE
, Fla., Feb. 11 , 2014 – Inmarsat (LSE:ISAT.L), the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services, announced today that it has selected Northrop Grumman Corporation to field its Spectrum Interference and Monitoring System
(SIMS) to government users of Inmarsat’s Global Xpress service.

SIMS will provide improved speed, flexibility, and performance in monitoring Global Xpress services. Northrop Grumman developed SIMS based on the globally-deployed monitoring system it previously developed for the Department of Defense (DoD) Wideband Global System (WGS) constellation. Through familiar user interfaces, customizable views and graphical reporting, SIMS provides Inmarsat value added resellers (VARs), network operators and government customers with unparalleled insight i
nto their networks’ operations. SIMS is the advanced tool needed for spectrum situational awareness, rapid
interference detection, and problem resolution, ensuring optimal availability, reliability and quality of service to Global Xpress users.

Inmarsat Global Xpress (GX) will be the first globally available high-speed, mobile commercial satellite wideband network. It will offer the unique combination of global coverage from a single operator, consistent performance everywhere, and the network reliability for which Inmarsat is renowned. GX is the first satellite fleet from Inmarsat that will access Ka-band frequencies and allow for even higher bandwidth communication, virtually anywhere in the world. The first satellite
(Inmarsat-5 F1) was successfully launched on December 8th, 2013 covering Europe, the Middle-East, Africa and Asia. Full
global coverage from the GX constellation of three Ka-band satellites is scheduled to be achieved by the end of 2014.

“We are excited to have Northrop Grumman as a mission partner in providing spectrum monitoring capabilities to our Government customers”, said Peter Hadinger, President, Inmarsat US Government Business Unit. “We have designed Global Xpress from the ground up to be a trusted network that complements the Wideband Global System and other MILSATCOM. We chose an advanced spectrum and interference monitoring system that is based on a common platform to the one used by the U.S. DoD to facilitate interoperability and support our commitment to assured access.”

“Northrop Grumman is proud to partner with Inmarsat on SIMS. This leveraging of defense technology and
operational flexibility represents a tangible and game-changing step in the collaboration between defense and commercial SATCOM that both enhances the value of Global Xpress services and sets a standard for future partnerships,” said Martin Amen,
director of satellite and network operations for Northrop Grumman’s Information Systems sector.

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LOCKHEED MARTIN POWERS ON SECOND GPS III SATELLITE IN PRODUCTION — Press Release

DENVER, Jan. 29, 2014 – The Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] team developing the U.S. Air Force’s next generation Global Positioning System (GPS) recently turned on power to the bus and network communications equipment payload of the program’s second satellite designated GPS III Space Vehicle 2 (SV-02).

The successful powering on of GPS III SV-02, on Dec. 19, 2013, at Lockheed Martin’s Denver-area GPS III Processing Facility (GPF), is a major production milestone which demonstrates the satellite’s mechanical integration, validates its interfaces, and leads the way for electrical and integrated hardware-software testing.

“The GPS III SV-02 bus power on is a significant milestone, positioning SV-02 in line with the Air Force’s first GPS III space vehicle, SV-01, in our GPF, where both satellites are progressing through sequential integration and test work stations specifically designed for efficient and affordable satellite production,” explained Mark Stewart, vice president for Lockheed Martin’s Navigation Systems mission area.

On Nov. 11, 2013, the propulsion core module for SV-02 was delivered to the GPF from Lockheed Martin’s Space & Technology Center, in Stennis, Miss., where the core was manufactured. The structural backbone of the satellite, the core contains the integrated propulsion subsystem that allows the GPS III to maneuver on orbit immediately after launch, as well as to conduct repositioning maneuvers throughout its mission life.

The GPS III program will affordably replace aging GPS satellites, while improving capability to meet the evolving demands of military, commercial and civilian users. GPS III satellites will deliver three times better accuracy; provide up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities; and include enhancements which extend spacecraft life 25 percent further than the prior GPS block. The GPS III also will carry a new civil signal designed to be interoperable with other international global navigation satellite systems, enhancing civilian user connectivity.

Lockheed Martin is currently under contract for production of the first six GPS III satellites (SV 01-06), the first four funded under the original contract and the fifth and sixth recent fully funded by an exercised Air Force option on Dec. 13, 2013. Lockheed Martin had previously received advanced procurement funding for long-lead components for the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth satellites (SV 05-08).

The first GPS III satellite (SV-01) was powered on in Feb. 28, 2013. GPS III SV-01’s spacecraft bus and antenna assemblies were delivered to Lockheed Martin’s GPF this summer. SV-01 is now in the integration and test flow leading to delivery “flight-ready” to the Air Force.

The GPS III team is led by the Global Positioning Systems Directorate at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. Lockheed Martin is the GPS III prime contractor with teammates Exelis, General Dynamics, Infinity Systems Engineering, Honeywell, ATK and other subcontractors. Air Force Space Command’s 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2SOPS), based at Schriever Air Force Base, Colo., manages and operates the GPS constellation for both civil and military users.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 115,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.

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GLI-METRO-G gives user complete control over Effective Radiated Power (ERP) levels for the entire GNSS range. — Press Release

PUEBLO, Colorado (November 2013) GPS Source announces the release of the GLI-METRO-G.  A smart GNSS controller designed with technology derived from high performance systems and military applications. Capable of handling any GPS L1/L2, GLONASS L1/L2 Signal application, it has many highly desired features, including  the ability to select GPS+ GLONASS, GPS only or GLONASS only signal output power control.  It also has built-in antenna monitoring and oscillation detection.

With the GLI-METRO-G, the user has complete control over effective radiated power (ERP) levels for the entire GNSS range.  GLI-METRO-G has the unique benefit of allowing selection for the power control between signals. A user can easily decide which signal output the GLI-METRO-G will use to control signal power: GPS+GLONASS, GLONASS only or GPS only. When used in conjunction with an active GPS/GLONASS receive antenna, it will pass GPS+GLONASS signals inside a building, hangar or any structure where signal is not accessible. It can be used in an automated test environment or in a shielded room. GLI-METRO-G reduces the need for multiple antennas, receive devices and multiple antenna runs, while lowering maintenance and installation costs.

Robert Horton of GPS Source, said “We are excited to have the opportunity to bring the GLI-METRO-G to market.  The frustration of trying to get a high quality GNSS signal, inside a building or covered structure is over.  This is a state-of-the-art GNSS smart amplifier system that will help anyone select an output signal, select the power level and safely bring the signal inside.”

The GLI-Metro-G is currently in production and will be available November 2013.  GLI-Metro-G offers support for present and future GNSS signals, including Galileo, ensuring operation with future devices.

Founded in 2000, GPS Source, Inc. designs, develops and manufactures solutions that bring GNSS inside for the military, defense, aerospace, commercial and public sector markets. This includes a complete line of GNSS antennas, splitters, repeaters, cables, etc.  The “GPS Live Inside” products ensure GPS signal availability inside.  GPS Source, Inc. is a veteran owned small business and an AS9100 certified company.  For more information, visit www.GPSSource.com.

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U.S. NAVY AND LOCKHEED MARTIN DELIVER NATION’S newest secure communications satellite for mobile users — Press Release

MUOS 2 unloadingSUNNYVALE, Calif., May 13, 2013 – The U.S. Navy and Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] have delivered the second Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) spacecraft to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., where it will be prepared for a July liftoff aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket.

MUOS vastly improves current secure mobile satellite communications. It links mobile users for the first time to a powerful voice and data system that delivers high speeds and streaming data, similar to consumer smartphone capabilities. The complete constellation of four spacecraft plus on-orbit spare will provide global coverage with prioritized voice, video and data services.

“Delivery of the second MUOS satellite begins the process of launch site testing and delivery to orbit,” said Iris Bombelyn, vice president of Narrowband Communications at Lockheed Martin. “MUOS-2 will add on-orbit military satellite communication that is heavily in demand. Our first space vehicle has performed exceptionally on orbit, providing legacy payload voice calls at full capacity. In fact, we recently demonstrated mobile data and voice transmissions using our advanced payload.”

Today, MUOS-2 was safely transported from Lockheed Martin’s Sunnyvale, Calif., facility to nearby Moffett Federal Airfield. The 60th Air Mobility Wing of Travis Air Force Base, Calif., then loaded the satellite aboard a C-5 aircraft and successfully shipped the spacecraft to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

Prior to launch, engineers will complete post shipment testing, fuel the satellite’s propulsion system and encapsulate the spacecraft inside the launch vehicle’s payload fairing. The fairing will then be mated on top of the Atlas V launch vehicle for final integrated testing and closeout preparations for launch.

MUOS-1 has been providing crystal-clear voice communications since it started operating in 2012. More recently, its advanced Wideband Code Division Multiple Access payload has performed flawlessly since terminals began using its waveform, which was developed by General Dynamics and delivered by Lockheed Martin earlier this year. There are more than 20,000 existing terminals compatible with and can access the MUOS legacy payload. After MUOS-2 is operational and the ground stations and terminals have been certified, the full suite of MUOS features will be available to users in the field as new terminals are deployed.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 118,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.

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Raytheon Bids for New Air Force Communications Terminal

The Global Aircrew Strategic Network Terminal (Global ASNT) is a U.S. Air Force project that is part of the Minimum Essential Emergency Communications Network (MEECN)system. It’s role is to provide messaging and aircrew alert functions. It will be part of the Advanced Extremely High Frequency / Extremely High Frequency (AEHF/EHF) system utilizing new AEHF communication satellites now being built by Lockheed Martin (LMT) to improve U.S. communication capabilities.

The requirement has existed for several years but earlier this month the U.S. Air Force asked for final proposals by 18 January. The solicitation information may be found on FedBizOpps.Gov here.

It has been reported that Raytheon (RTN) did submit a proposal for this requirement. It believes that the contract will be awarded this summer. The company is already building AEHF ground terminals for use by the military.

The program is still R&D and this contract would develop the terminal. It would then move into production later. If any other company bid on the contract it has not been publicized.

Due to the budget uncertainty of the sequestration and continuing resolution it may be hard in FY13 to begin new programs like this. They might, as the Army has already announced with the Ground Combat Vehicle, delay them a few months to get to FY14 and a more stable fiscal environment.

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GeoEye and DigitalGlobe Receive Antitrust Clearance in Connection with Pending Combination — Press Release

HERNDON, Va., Jan. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — GeoEye, Inc. (NASDAQ: GEOY), a leading source of geospatial information and insight, announced that it has received antitrust clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice in connection with its pending combination with DigitalGlobe, Inc. (NYSE: DGI).

As previously announced, on July 23, 2012, the boards of directors of both GeoEye and DigitalGlobe unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which the companies will combine. Completion of the transaction is subject to satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, including obtaining regulatory approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). GeoEye is working cooperatively with the FCC and NOAA, and the transaction is expected to close by January 31, 2013. Shareowners of both GeoEye and DigitalGlobe have previously voted overwhelmingly in favor of the combination. Simultaneous with the closing of the transaction, the company expects to complete a $1.2 billion refinancing, which is expected to include a combination of senior notes and senior secured credit facilities.

Pursuant to the Agreement and Plan of Merger between the parties and the anticipated closing date of January 31, 2013, all stockholder election forms with respect to the consideration to be received in the merger by GeoEye stockholders must be received by the Exchange Agent, American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, LLC (AST) by no later than 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on January 29, 2013. Further information regarding the stockholder election form may be obtained by contacting AST toll free at (877) 825 – 8619.

About GeoEye

GeoEye is a leading source of geospatial information and insight for decision makers and analysts, who need a clear understanding of our changing world to protect lives, manage risk and optimize resources. Each day, organizations in defense and intelligence, public safety, critical infrastructure, energy and online media rely on GeoEye’s imagery, tools and expertise to support important missions around the globe. Widely recognized as a pioneer in high-resolution satellite imagery, GeoEye has evolved into a complete provider of geospatial intelligence solutions. GeoEye’s ability to collect, process and analyze massive amounts of geospatial data allows our customers to quickly see precise changes on the ground and anticipate where events may occur in the future. GeoEye is a public company listed on NASDAQ as GEOY and is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia with more than 700 employees worldwide. Learn more at www.geoeye.com.

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

This release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Without limitation, the words “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “intends,” “plans,” “will” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. All statements that address operating performance, events or developments that we expect or anticipate will occur in the future, including statements relating to growth, expected levels of expenditures and statements expressing general optimism about future operating results, are forward-looking statements. Similarly, statements that describe our business strategy, outlook, objectives, plans, intentions or goals also are forward-looking statements. All such forward-looking statements and those presented elsewhere by our management from time to time are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those described in “Risk Factors” included in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011, which we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on March 13, 2012, as updated in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the periods ended March 31, 2012, June 30, 2012, and September 30, 2012, which we filed with the SEC on May 4, 2012, August 7, 2012, and November 6, 2012, respectively. Copies of all SEC filings may be obtained from the SEC’s EDGAR Web site, http://www.sec.gov or by contacting: William L. Warren, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, at 703-480-5672.

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Raytheon submits Space Fence proposal to the US Air Force — Press Release

Leverages lessons learned from operational prototype and 7 decades of radar leadership to track space debris

TEWKSBURY, Mass., Nov. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) has submitted its proposal for the U.S. Air Force’s Space Fence program.

Space Fence, a large, S-band radar to be based in Kwajalein atoll, will be capable of detecting more and much smaller objects in low Earth orbit to provide greater accuracy and timeliness to meet space situational awareness requirements.

“Raytheon’s Space Fence solution will track more than 150,000 pieces of unaccounted space debris that threaten manned space flight and the satellites we all rely on for many critical services, including accurate weather forecasts, navigation and financial transactions,” said David Gulla, vice president of Global Integrated Sensors in Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems business.

“Raytheon’s decades of expertise building large-scale radars in remote locations, our investment in key technologies and the proven success of our working Space Fence prototype enable us to offer the U.S. Air Force a low-risk solution at an affordable price,” he added.

Raytheon leads the industry in delivering innovative, affordable and reliable radar solutions, leveraging a 70-year radar heritage to provide global customers a decisive intelligence edge in all domains. Raytheon produces the world’s broadest range of radar solutions and continually works to advance radar technologies to deliver enhanced capabilities for warfighters around the world.

“Raytheon has partnered closely with the Air Force during the technology development phase to understand the requirements and has come up with a number of innovative solutions that will make Space Fence affordable,” said Scott Spence, Raytheon’s Space Fence program director. “Raytheon is looking forward to supporting the Air Force as this vital program moves forward.”

About Space Fence and Space Debris

  • A piece of debris as small as 1 centimeter can seriously damage – or even destroy – an operational satellite.
  • Critical infrastructures such as power grids, banking operations and transportation systems are all dependent on the GPS satellite constellation.
  • The Space Fence system will replace the U.S. Air Force’s Space Surveillance System radar that has been operational since 1961.

About Raytheon

Raytheon Company, with 2011 sales of $25 billion and 71,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, homeland security and other government markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 90 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at www.raytheon.com and follow us on Twitter @raytheon.

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Lockheed Martin submits Space fence radar proposal to U.S. Air Force to detect and TRACK ORBITal objects — Press Release

MOORESTOWN, N.J., Nov. 13, 2012 – Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] has submitted its final contract proposal to build Space Fence, an advanced ground-based radar system that will improve the way the U.S. Air Force identifies and tracks orbital objects.

Space Fence will provide much-needed enhanced space situational awareness capabilities for the Air Force and allow the service to decommission the aging U.S.-based Air Force Space Surveillance System, originally installed in 1961.

“The original surveillance system wasn’t designed to detect and track the hundreds of thousands of smaller, orbiting objects that are in space today, potentially threatening the International Space Station, future manned space flight missions and our nation’s critical satellite assets,” said Steve Bruce, vice president for space surveillance systems at Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems & Sensors business. “With decades of experience developing powerful S-band radar systems, Lockheed Martin has proposed a scalable and affordable Space Fence solution for the Air Force that will transform space situational awareness.”

The Air Force plans to begin construction at its first Space Fence site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands in the fall of 2013 to meet the program’s 2017 initial operational capability goal. The contract value is estimated at $1.9 billion over a seven-year period of performance.

Using powerful, new ground-based S-band radar technology, Space Fence will enhance the way the U.S. detects, tracks, measures and catalogs orbiting objects and space debris with improved accuracy, better timeliness and increased surveillance coverage. Earlier this year, Lockheed Martin demonstrated its prototype Space Fence radar proving it could already detect resident space objects.

With more than 400 operational S-band arrays deployed worldwide, Lockheed Martin is a leader in S-band radar development, production, operation and sustainment. The Lockheed Martin-led team – which includes General Dynamics, AMEC and AT&T – has decades of collective experience in space-related programs, including sensors, mission processing, cataloging, orbital mechanics, net-centric communications and facilities.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 120,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2011 were $46.5 billion.

# # #

Photo courtesy of Lockheed Martin

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ULA Wins Contract for Further Launch Services

As the fiscal year came to an end this weekend the Pentagon closed it out by awarding several FY12 contacts. One of the biggest was to United Launch Alliance (ULA) for launch services in FY 2013.

ULA is a joint venture between Boeing (BA) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) and builds Atlas and Delta rockets used to launch military payloads. The overall program is the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV). Under the contract ULA provides both the launchers as well as engineering, management and launch activity support.

This part of the contract option for FY13 is worth a little over $1 billion and the number of launches planned for this year was not specified.

The original plan for EELV a decade a go was to support both Boeing and Lockheed as separate launch vehicle providers but eventually the decision was made to establish a joint venture between the two companies as a way to reduce costs.

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ATK Changes Paying Off? — Seeking Alpha

Here is an article I wrote at Seeking Alpha discussing Alliant Techsystems (ATK) latest earnings.

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TeleCommunication Systems Receives $19 Million Delivery Order from U.S. Army for SNAP Deployable Satellite Systems Equipment and Support — Press Release

ANNAPOLIS, Md., Aug. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — TeleCommunication Systems, Inc. (TCS) (NASDAQ: TSYS), a world leader in highly reliable and secure mobile communication technology, today announced that it has received a new $19 million delivery order from the U.S. Army for equipment, field services support and maintenance of Secret Internet Protocol Router and Non-secure Internet Protocol Router Access Point (SNAP) Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) satellite systems. The funding is the result of a successful bid on a task order for satellite communications equipment and support from the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command.

The order is initially funded at $700 thousand and will be funded up to a total of $19 million if the options are fully exercised. This new order will provide the U.S. Army with equipment and support for TCS’ SNAP deployable communications products. The U.S. Army Project Manager for the Warfighter Information Network – Tactical (PM WIN-T) Commercial Satellite Terminal Program is funding these procurements through the Army’s $5 billion World-Wide Satellite Systems (WWSS) contract vehicle.

“The U.S. armed forces need satellite communications systems that are easily deployed, secure and reliable,” said Michael Bristol, senior vice president and general manager of government solutions for TCS. “TCS’ SNAP VSAT satellite systems equipment meets these criteria and can help our military succeed.”

The TCS SNAP VSAT systems provide multimedia communications capabilities which convey encrypted voice, video and data. TCS SNAP products are highly transportable and ruggedized, and have a graphical user interface that facilitates easy set-up and operation. The modularity and plug-and-play interfaces between all radio frequency (RF) and baseband configurations inherent in the SNAP product line result in communication solutions tailored to the end-user’s specific needs.

About TeleCommunication Systems, Inc.
TeleCommunication Systems, Inc. (TCS) (NASDAQ: TSYS) is a world leader in highly reliable and secure mobile communication technology. TCS infrastructure forms the foundation for market leading solutions in E9-1-1, text messaging, commercial location and deployable wireless communications. TCS is at the forefront of new mobile cloud computing services providing wireless applications for navigation, hyper-local search, asset tracking, social applications and telematics. Millions of consumers around the world use TCS wireless apps as a fundamental part of their daily lives. Government agencies utilize TCS’ cyber security expertise, professional services, and highly secure deployable satellite solutions for mission-critical communications. Headquartered in Annapolis, MD, TCS maintains technical, service and sales offices around the world. To learn more about emerging and innovative wireless technologies, visit www.telecomsys.com.

Except for the historical information contained herein, this news release contains forward-looking statements as defined within Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These statements are subject to risks and uncertainties and are based upon TCS’ current expectations and assumptions that if incorrect would cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. Risks include without limitation the possibility that the contract options will not be exercised, or that the total value of the order will not be fully funded, and those detailed from time to time in the Company’s SEC reports, including the report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011, and on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2012.

Existing and prospective investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise the information in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances, or otherwise.

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ATK Announces Retirement of TacSat-3 Satellite — Press Release

Spacecraft Significantly Exceeded Mission Life ? On-Orbit Operations Lasted Nearly Three Years

Mission Confirms Robustness of ATK’s Quick-to-Launch Spacecraft Bus and Components

ARLINGTON, Va., May 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — ATK (NYSE: ATK) announces the conclusion of the Tactical Satellite-3 (TacSat-3) mission. The Air Force announced on April 30th, 2012, that the satellite deorbited into and burned up in the Earth’s atmosphere nearly three years after its May 2009 launch. TacSat-3 was designed for six months of operation, with a goal of one year. Not only did it outlive its design life, it also surpassed its original mission requirements and goals as an experimental spacecraft, and was successfully transitioned to operational status in 2010.

The satellite was removed from operational status and transferred to the Space and Missile Systems Center in February 2012. Once transitioned, ATK provided the Air Force Research Laboratory with updated flight software, which allowed the vehicle to conduct on-orbit collection testing.

TacSat-3′s mission demonstrated the capability to conduct hyperspectral imaging to support the needs of U.S. warfighters.

“TacSat-3 served America well. We were proud to be part of the team that provided reconnaissance data from space to warfighters in the field and to intelligence analysts at home,” said Tom Wilson, vice president and general manager, Space Systems Division, ATK Aerospace Group. “Our innovative bus technology was a key factor in successfully extending the TacSat-3 demonstration to a longer-term operational mission. The mission enabled us to apply and enhance our flexible, modular bus platforms for future small satellite missions that included the ORS-1 spacecraft.”

The spacecraft is a pioneer of the emerging Operationally Responsive Space program, which was designed to meet the growing need of U.S. forces for flexible, affordable and responsive satellite systems.

ATK, as the spacecraft bus prime contractor, provided the complete bus system, which included the onboard command and data handling system, electrical power system, spacecraft bus primary structure, and interfaces to the launch vehicle and payload. Built and designed in just 15 months, ATK’s spacecraft bus met the TacSat-3 program goals of being operationally responsive, low-cost and with expected performance. The spacecraft also featured first-generation modular bus technology designed to provide flexibility for future small satellite missions. As a rapid, affordable experimental mission, the specification did not include a propulsion system to sustain long-term low-Earth orbit.

The TacSat-3 program was managed by the Air Force Space Command with collaboration from the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate and the Army Space and Missile Defense Command.

ATK is an aerospace, defense and commercial products company with operations in 22 states, Puerto Rico and internationally. News and information can be found on the Internet at www.atk.com.

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Seeking Alpha: Orbital Poised for a Good Year?

This is an exclusive article I wrote at Seeking Alpha on Orbital Sciences. It may be found here.

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Lockheed Martin Honors Pioneers of Recently Declassified National Reconnaissance Satellites — Press Release

Lockheed Martin Honors Pioneers of Recently Declassified National Reconnaissance Satellites

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Jan. 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Pioneers of the highly successful Gambit and Hexagon legacy reconnaissance systems recently unveiled by the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) were honored during a Jan. 24 ceremony at Lockheed Martin’s (NYSE: LMT) facilities in Sunnyvale, Calif.

Gambit and Hexagon followed Corona, the nation’s first photo reconnaissance satellite system to return an image from space successfully. All three programs were built by industry teams under contract to the NRO with Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company as the satellite system integrator. These programs provided vital national security information from 1960 until 1986.

Approximately 400 former employees involved in some aspect of Hexagon and Gambit and their guests attended the ceremony which featured displays and videos highlighting spacecraft production, launch and technical capabilities including actual Earth imagery. Speakers included Bruce Carlson, director of the NRO, and Joanne Maguire, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company.

In his remarks, Carlson expressed his gratitude to the entire Lockheed Martin team for their contributions to national security: “Without this vital work, we would not have had the search, surveillance, and mapping capabilities that provided the high resolution imagery that gave our nation’s decision makers the ability to deal with our adversaries from a position of strength.”

“The successes achieved by the Hexagon and Gambit teams built upon the Corona legacy to deliver unprecedented mission capabilities and longevity,” said Maguire. “We are enormously proud of our role in providing these vitally important remote sensing assets to the nation.”

The first Gambit system, launched in 1963, was equipped with a 77-inch focal length camera system . The second system, Gambit 3 was equipped with the camera system that included a 175-inch focal length camera. The system was first launched in 1966 and provided the U.S. with exquisite surveillance capabilities from space for nearly two decades.

Hexagon was first launched in 1971 to improve upon Corona’s capability to image broad denied areas for threats to the United States. Twelve of the 19 systems flown also carried a mapping camera to aid in U.S. military war planning.

The United States depended on these search and surveillance satellites to understand the capabilities, intentions, and advancements of those who opposed the U.S during the Cold War. Together they became America’s essential eyes in space.

In addition, Gambit and Hexagon were launched aboard rockets built by Lockheed Martin heritage companies. Gambit 1 was launched on an Atlas rocket with the orbiting Agena D upper stage and Gambit 3 was launched using a Titan III B booster. Hexagon was launched aboard the larger Titan III D rocket.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company is a world leader in the most advanced space-based systems for government and global commercial customers. Its expertise in stabilized, remote sensing spacecraft for high-resolution remote sensing missions began with Corona, a ground-breaking system that achieved its first successful launch in 1960.

The company draws on its wealth of expertise in building and integrating remote sensing satellites to provide commercial customers with advanced systems such as the GeoEye’s IKONOS satellite and its next-generation Earth imaging program, known as GeoEye-2.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 126,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s 2010 sales from continuing operations were $45.8 billion.

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Boeing to Build More WGS Satellites, Follows With Successful Launch of WGS-4

The United States military and government relies heavily on satellite communications to support their operations. Boeing (BA) has been building the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite for several years. Yesterday the aerospace contractor received a contract from the Air Force for more of the systems as well as successfully launching the 4th system into space.

The contract for WGS-9 follows on one recently awarded for number 8 and has a value of about $377 million. This is the exercise of an option on a production contract Boeing won late in FY11. Combined with that for the 8th system Boeing has received contracts worth almost $700 million for WGS birds. Boeing had previously delivered 4 WGS systems.

Also last night Boeing saw a Delta IV rocket successfully place WGS-4 into orbit. WGS-1 was launched in 2007, WGS-2 in 2008 and WGS-3 in 2009. Ultimately a constellation of 9 of the WGS satellites will be launched. Boeing now has received production options for all of them.

The U.S. is also buying two other communication satellites under the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) and Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) programs. WGS was originally a “gapfiller” to provide temporary capability to bridge until AEHF were ready. Now due to their capability and time pressures WGS is becoming a primary communication system.

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Lockheed Wins Contract for More GPS Satellites

Even though the U.S. defense budget and spending overall will decline in the next few years there is no doubt certain critical modernization and support programs that need to be funded. One of these is the U.S. investment in the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) system. The United States military developed the system and has launched several satellites over the last thirty years and is now in the process of carrying out a program to build and place into orbit the GPS III Constellation.

GPS is now used not only for navigation of ships and aircraft as originally intended but also to support ground movement and provide guidance and targeting data for a host of weapons and unmanned vehicles. This is not even considering the capability it provides to the civilian world as well. In the near future GPS will become critical to international and national air traffic control and guidance as while the U.S. upgrades its system the European Union and Russia are deploying their own advanced constellation of updated satellites to provide similar capability.

The Block IIIA satellites have been under development and production by Lockheed Martin (LMT) and other contractors since 2008 when the program passed its Defense Acquisition Board (DAB) review. In early FY11 the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report stating that the program was facing development and deployment delays due to not awarding the contract for the new satellites in a timely manner. This could lead to the GPS constellation being smaller then necessary to support all applications. The Air Force and Lockheed were working mitigation plans.

As the program has progressed the Air Force awarded Lockheed the contract to build the third and fourth satellites in this configuration. The initial value for the contract is almost $240 million. The initial contract awarded in 2008 covered the first two satellites in the program.

Ultimately up to 32 GPS III satellites will be manufactured and deployed over the enxt several years. The first is expected to be launched in 2014.

GPS is critical to support U.S. combat operations and new satellites need to be launched to replace the older, less capable systems from earlier constellations. Lockheed as long as it continues to meet the Air Force’s schedule and requirements should have the bulk of this work which should be due to its importance fairly well funded until its completion.

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ULA To Provide Launch Capability for Military

The U.S. Air Force recently awarded a contract to United Launch Alliance (ULA) to provide vehicles to launch military payloads into space. ULA is a joint venture between Boeing (BA) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) and manufactures these vehicles primarily at their Decatur, AL facility.

ULA was an outgrowth of a program from the early part of this century called Assured Access to Space. The plan was to have the ability to launch when necessary and would rely on Boeing and Lockheed to provide their two main launch vehicles – the Atlas and Delta rockets. Originally the two companies would have competing contracts to control costs. After reviewing the requirements and to assure both systems were available it was decided to combine their efforts into ULA.

A contract to support various satellite launches was awarded this week with a value of over $1.5 billion. This is for 5 Atlas V and 4 Delta IV systems. The launches will all occur by 2014. The payloads include reconnaissance systems, GPS satellites and two weather ones.

ULA has been the primary provider of launch vehicles for military, science and foriegn payloads for several years. With the demise of the space shuttle which also had the ability to deliver satellites to some orbits unless the Air Force or NASA choose one of the newly emerging commercial space contractors, like Space X, ULA will continue to win most of the work.

Photo from Ryan Somma’s Flickr photostream.

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COM DEV USA wins military contract — Press Release

COM DEV USA wins military contract

EL SEGUNDO, CA, Sept. 29, 2011 /PRNewswire/ – COM DEV USA, LLC, a subsidiary of COM DEV International Ltd. (TSX: CDV), today announced that it has been awarded a contract to supply equipment for a military communications satellite. Valued in excess of US$5 million, the contract is a follow-on order for an additional flight set of equipment on a satellite program for which the Company is an incumbent supplier. COM DEV USA will be providing filters, diplexers, ferrite devices and switches for the satellite. Work on the contract will be carried out at the Company’s facility in El Segundo, California with completion expected by the end of fiscal 2012.

“When COM DEV entered the US military satellite communications market in 2008, our stated intention was to be the tier two supplier of choice for a full range of passive microwave devices into that market. Being the incumbent on a number of continuing milsatcom programs has given us the opportunity to demonstrate ourselves as an outstanding supply chain partner to the prime contractors in this market,” said Dan White, president of COM DEV USA. “More importantly, our performance on these programs has resulted in continuing contract awards, and we are grateful for the confidence our customer continues to show in us.”

Commenting on this contract award, Michael Pley, CEO of COM DEV International said, “Even as new government programs are delayed by spending restraint, our position as the incumbent supplier on a number of continuing legacy satellite programs, coupled with our demonstrated ability to deliver value to our customer, is providing our US based business with a significant and steady flow of work, which we expect will continue well into the future.”

About COM DEV

COM DEV International Ltd. (www.comdevintl.com) is a leading global provider of space hardware and services. With facilities in Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States, COM DEV manufactures advanced subsystems and microsatellites that are sold to major satellite prime contractors, government agencies and satellite operators, for use in communications, space science, remote sensing and defense applications. COM DEV’s majority-owned subsidiary, exactEarth Ltd., provides satellite data services.

This news release may contain certain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from results indicated in any forward-looking statements. The Company cautions that, among other things, in view of the rapid changes in communications markets and technologies, and other risks including the cost and market acceptance of the Company’s new products, the level of individual customer procurements and competitive product offerings and pricing, and general economic circumstances, the Company’s business prospects may be materially different from forward-looking statements made by the Company.

The triangular logo and the word COM DEV are each registered trademarks and the property of COM DEV Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Defence Geospatial Intelligence (DGI) 2012 — Conference

Defence Geospatial Intelligence (DGI) 2012

23-26th of January 2012
Westminster, London on
www.dgieurope.com

Defence Geospatial Intelligence (DGI) is Europe’s largest and most international annual gathering dedicated to the high-level discussion of the importance and the major challenges of the use of geospatial intelligence in both defence and national security operations.

DGI brings together heads of Geospatial Intelligence, Remote Sensing, GIS Mapping, Satellite Imagery and Analysis within the Military, Governmental and National Security sectors. It attracts professionals who are responsible for using, and integrating, geo based capabilities in their operations and organisations. DGI provides a unique forum for defence intelligence to discuss and debate the development of geospatial intelligence capabilities across the globe in defence and security sectors – With over 600 attendees year on year, DGI has becomes Europe’s key forum for geospatial strategy.

Addressing the use of geospatial information in scenarios such as international conflicts, defence operations, C4ISR, humanitarian disasters, crime, national security, border control, arms treaty monitoring and global climate change; a fundamental objective of DGI is to help organisations understand how to build the necessary infrastructure and architecture to take advantage of geospatial intelligence capabilities.

To find out more, contact the organisers today:

- W: www.dgieurope.com
- E: [email protected]
- T: +44 (0) 207 368 9465

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