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SDA Awards Link 16 Antenna Development Contract to CesiumAstro

Proliferated Warfighter

Space Architecture

SDA Awards Link 16 Antenna Development Contract to CesiumAstro

The Space Development Agency has selected CesiumAstro to develop Link-16 compatible active electronically scanned array antennas for the agency’s low-Eath orbit satellite network called the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture, formerly known as the National Defense Space Architecture. CesiumAstro will build the antennas under a $5 million contract award.

According to the company, the antennas will use multiple beams to allow users in various locations to connect to the PWSA satellites simultaneously and receive critical information faster, SpaceNews reported. Since the AESAs are software-defined, they can be reprogrammed to meet specific mission needs.

PWSA will consist of the Transport Layer for data transmission and the Tracking Layer for missile warning and detection. The SDA previously awarded similar contracts to Redwire and MDA but they will deliver antennas for the first tranche of Transport Layer satellites. CesiumAstro’s products will be used for future Transport Layer mission requirements.

The SDA also announced a contract worth over $250 million with Raytheon Technologies to build seven satellites for Tranche 1 Tracking Layer. The spacecraft will be based on Blue Canyon Technologies‘ Saturn-class microsatellite bus and will carry Raytheon’s Wide Field of View overhead persistent infrared sensor and Seakr Engineering‘s electronics payload.

Raytheon acquired Blue Canyon in 2020 and Seakr in 2021.

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Category: Space