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Raytheon Technologies Books $250M Space Development Agency Contract to Deliver Missile Satellite Constellation; Dave Broadbent Quoted

3 mins read
Raytheon Technologies Books $250M Space Development Agency Contract to Deliver Missile Satellite Constellation; Dave Broadbent Quoted

Raytheon Technologies has won a contract with a value of over $250 million to design, develop and deliver a seven-vehicle missile satellite constellation for the Space Development Agency.

Under the award, Raytheon will also provide the agency with assistance for launch and ground operations, the Arlington, Virginia-based company announced on Thursday.

“Developing a resilient and affordable proliferated satellite constellation in low-Earth orbit will improve our ability to track emerging threats like hypersonic missiles,” said Dave Broadbent, president of space and C2 at Raytheon Intelligence & Space.

He noted that developing this constellation is a “high priority” for the enterprise in the coming months.

Since its 2020 acquisition of small satellite manufacturer Blue Canyon Technologies and its more recent acquisition of space electronics provider SEAKR Engineering, Raytheon Technologies has broadened its space payload and satellite bus portfolio in line with its goal to grow within the space market.

To decrease technical risk and accelerate the delivery of the missile satellites, Raytheon will use existing designs, available commercial products and common components to build the new constellation. These elements will include Raytheon’s Wide Field of View overhead persistent infrared sensor as well as Blue Canyon’s Saturn-class microsatellite bus and SEAKR’s electronics payload. 

Raytheon and its subsidiaries have recently conducted a number of space-related efforts. In January, Raytheon Intelligence & Space won a prime contract from the Space Force, under which the company and partner Lockheed Martin are developing a missile warning satellite prototype to improve the detection and tracking of missiles in medium-Earth orbit.

Last year, Blue Canyon supplied the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency with the first of 10 Saturn-class microsat buses, which include dedicated payload interfaces, advanced electric propulsion, a novel power system and radio frequency communication, command and data handling capabilities.

Earlier, SEAKR performed optical communications on two satellites, which were able to successfully send over 280 gigabits of data within a 40-minute time period at a distance of 114 kilometers.

Both Blue Canyon’s and SEAKR’s efforts fell under DARPA’s Blackjack program, which is intended to support the development and demonstration of elements necessary for a global high-speed network in low-Earth orbit using private sector technology.