NASA has announced that it is adding Lockheed Martin’s Athena II to the NASA
Launch Services (NLS) contract using the contract’s “on-ramp” provision.
This provides an opportunity for new, emerging launch service providers as
well as incumbents to introduce qualified launch vehicles not available at
the time of the award of the initial NLS contract.

The initial contract was awarded by NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center to:

Lockheed Martin Commercial Launch Services, Inc.

P.O. Box 179

Denver, CO 80201-0179

NASA has not yet identified a potential payload and so there is no specific
launch timeframe or a dollar value associated with this contract
modification as awarded. The contract type is “Indefinite Delivery –
Indefinite Quantity” (IDIQ) with a “not-to-exceed” fixed price to be
specified for the launch services.

Lockheed Martin is now eligible to compete the Athena II for missions in
the future. The initial NASA Launch Services contracts were awarded in June
2000 to Delta Launch Services, Inc. for the Delta class of vehicles and to
Lockheed Martin Commercial Launch Services, Inc. for the Atlas class of

The NASA Launch Services contracts call for launching payloads that weigh
3,300 pounds (1,500 kilograms) or heavier to a 125-mile-high (200-kilometer)
circular orbit.