WASHINGTON — The U.S. Space Force’s launch enterprise awarded ManTech a $20.9 million six-month contract extension to provide systems engineering and integration services until September 2020.

The Space and Missile Systems Center said last month it would extend ManTech’s contract as it continues to review bids from vendors competing for the 10-year launch systems engineering and integration (SE&I) contract. The actual amount of the contract was disclosed on May 19.

ManTech is the incumbent SE&I contractor and the job is now being re-competed. The company’s 10-year contract awarded in 2020 expired in March. To bridge the gap until the next contract, SMC awarded a six-month extension.

The SE&I contract supports the SMC launch enterprise at Los Angeles Air Force Base as well as the 30th Space Wing and the 45th Space Wing at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, respectively. According to SMC, the contractor will provide “critical support necessary to ensure successful on-time launches in a new era of national security space launch.”

SMC said a sixth-month extension was necessary to ensure a smooth transition and continuity of service until a new contract is awarded. If a new vendor is selected, the contract extension requires ManTech to help train the workers from the incoming contractor.

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 two decades as editor of NDIA’s National Defense...