Lockheed Martin SBIRS team delivers major subsystems for second GEO satellite

SUNNYVALE, Calif, 23 Dec. 2008. The Lockheed Martin- led team developing the U.S. Air Force's Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) has achieved major milestones on the second geosynchronous orbit (GEO-2) spacecraft with the completion and delivery of the remaining major spacecraft bus subsystems.

SUNNYVALE, Calif, 23 Dec. 2008. The Lockheed Martin- led team developing the U.S. Air Force's Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) has achieved major milestones on the second geosynchronous orbit (GEO-2) spacecraft with the completion and delivery of the remaining major spacecraft bus subsystems.

The GEO-2 spacecraft core structure and propulsion subsystem was recently completed and the high-performance communications subsystem for the spacecraft was delivered earlier this month .

Developed and tested at Lockheed Martin's facilities in Newtown, Pa., and delivered to its Space Systems Company in Sunnyvale, Calif., the communications subsystem will deliver anti-jam, survivable communications, and data from the infrared payload to the warfighter and provide worldwide coverage of missile launch detection and defense data. The subsystem also provides secure command and control of the satellite by continuous interaction with ground stations.

The propulsion subsystem is essential for maneuvering the satellite during transfer orbit to its final location as well as conducting on-orbit repositioning maneuvers throughout its mission life. It was developed at Lockheed Martin's Mississippi Space & Technology Center, an advanced propulsion, thermal, and metrology facility located at the John C. Stennis Space Center. The SBIRS propulsion subsystem design is based on Lockheed Martin's A2100 geosynchronous spacecraft series and consists of 18 reaction engine assemblies, a fuel tank, two oxidizer tanks, and a liquid apogee engine.

In April 2009 the GEO-2 Infrared Payload will be delivered by Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems in, Azusa, Calif., for integration into the flight configuration, leading to the start of the vehicle integrated test flow in the summer of 2009 and launch in fiscal year 2011.

SBIRS is designed to provide early warning of missile launches, and simultaneously support other missions including missile defense, technical intelligence and battlespace characterization.

The SBIRS team is led by the Space Based Infrared Systems Wing at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif. Lockheed Martin Space Systems Cois the SBIRS prime contractor and Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems, Azusa, Calif., is the payload integrator. Air Force Space Command operates the SBIRS system.

As the SBIRS prime contractor, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company provides program management, the GEO spacecraft bus, HEO and GEO payload pointing, and system engineering and integration. Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Services builds and maintains the SBIRS ground segment which has been operational since 2001. Northrop Grumman is the major subcontractor and provides the HEO and GEO payloads and participates in ground system development and systems engineering.

Lockheed Martin's current SBIRS contract includes the two HEO payloads now on-orbit, two GEO satellites, as well as ground-based assets to receive and process the infrared data. The program is in the early stages of adding additional GEO spacecraft and HEO payloads to the planned constellation.

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