Air Force embarks on major protected MILSATCOM study with more than 15 contracts awarded

With an eye to developing protected military satellite communications (MILSATCOM), the Air Force has embarked on a major contracting initiative by issuing more than 15 contracts under the “Protected MILSATCOM Design for Affordability Risk Reduction Demonstration Study.”

The work is being led by the Air Force Space Command’s Space and Missile Systems Center, Military Satellite Communications Systems Directorate at Los Angeles AFB, CA. The goal of the study, which will include concept development and component level demonstration, is to determine the feasibility and affordability of using existing and/or narrowly modified commercial protected satellite communication systems to support future protected MILSATCOM needs.

Protected MILSATCOM is defined as extremely high frequency services to both strategic and tactical forces. Protected, strategic MILSATCOM must be able to provide low probability of interception/detection/exploitation (LPI/LPD/LPE), survivable, anti-scintillation and anti-jam communications, as well as nuclear command and control services in all operational environments: nuclear, contested and benign. Protected, tactical MILSATCOM must be able to provide anti-jam and LPI/LPD/LPE communications in both contested and benign operational environments.

The following list includes the contract winners and their particular roles in the study. All the work is scheduled for completion by July 28, 2013. 

* The Boeing Co., Space & Intelligence Systems, won a $11.7 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development, affordable protected space/ground segment design and demonstration, and affordable mission planning and management demonstration.

* Northrop Grumman Systems, Redondo Beach, Calif., won a $11 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development, affordable protected space/ground segment design and demonstration, and affordable mission planning and management demonstration. 

* Space Systems, Palo Alto, Calif., won a $10.1 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development, affordable protected space/ground segment design and demonstration, and affordable mission planning and management demonstration. 

* Raytheon, Marlborough, Mass., won a $8.7 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development and affordable terminal design and demonstration. 

* L-3 Communications, Communications Systems, won a $7.9 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development and affordable terminal design and demonstration.            

* Hughes Network Systems, won a $1.8 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development and affordable mission planning and management demonstration. 

* Lockheed Martin, Information and Systems and Global Solutions, King of Prussia, Pa., won a $979,000 contract for protected MILSATCOM affordable gateway risk reduction and demonstration.  

* ViaSat, Comsat Laboratories, Germantown, Md., won a $1.4 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development and affordable terminal cryptographic component development and demonstration. 

* L-3 Communications., Communications Systems, Camden, N.J., won a $1,2 million contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development and affordable terminal cryptographic component development and demonstration.    

* Orbital Sciences, Dulles, Va. won a $175,000 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development.       

* General Dynamic Advanced Information Systems, Santa Clara, Calif., won a $174,624 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development. 

* Space Micro, San Diego, Calif., won a $174,320 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development study.           

* Lockheed Martin, Space Systems, Sunnyvale, Calif., won a $159,643 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development.            

* Harris, Government Communications Systems, Palm Bay, Fla., won a $158,285 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development. 

* Hughes Design Group, Culver City, Calif., won a $157,656 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development.             

* Markham Technology, Irvine, Calif., won a $154,840 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development.             

* General Dynamics, Taunton, Mass., won a $152,450 contract for protected MILSATCOM waveform specification development. 

About the Author

Barry Rosenberg is editor-in-chief of Defense Systems. Follow him on Twitter: @BarryDefense.

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