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L3Harris gets $119 million Space Force contract for deep-space telescopes

The contract is to upgrade and expand the Ground-based Electro-Optical Deep Space Surveillance System that track objects in geostationary orbits.
The GEODSS facility at Diego Garcia is one of three operational sites world-wide. The facility tracks known man-made deep space objects in orbit around earth. Credit: U.S. Air Force

WASHINGTON — L3Harris Technologies received a $119.1 million contract to upgrade and expand the network of U.S. military telescopes known as the Ground-based Electro-Optical Deep Space Surveillance System that track objects in geostationary orbits.

The contract, announced Sept. 21 by the U.S. Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center, funds upgrades to existing GEODSS sensors, and the design of new ground-based optical sensors in European and Pacific sites.

The work is to be completed by June 2024. The contract will be worth $218 million if all options are exercised to build the two new sites in Spain and Australia.

L3Harris is responsible to maintain and modernize the military’s network of space surveillance sensors under a 10-year $1.2 billion contract awarded in February 2020 known as MOSSAIC, short for maintenance of space situational awareness integrated capabilities.

There are currently three GEODSS sites — on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean; at the White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; and in Maui, Hawaii.

Sandra Erwin writes about military space programs, policy, technology and the industry that supports this sector. She has covered the military, the Pentagon, Congress and the defense industry for nearly...