WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee recommended adding $125 million to the president’s budget request for a program used to purchase commercial satellite imagery for defense and intelligence purposes.

The committee approved the increase for the EnhancedView program May 24 in its markup of the 2013 National Defense Authorization bill, Tara Andringa, a committee spokeswoman, said via email May 25. Total annual budgets for EnhancedView, administered by the U.S. National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, are classified.

The NGA in 2010 awarded EnhancedView contracts valued at more than $7 billion combined to DigitalGlobe and GeoEye, with a portion of the funding to go toward next-generation imaging satellites and related infrastructure, and the remainder for imagery purchases. The contracts are to be renewed annually over a 10-year period, with imagery purchased under so-called service level agreements with a combined potential annual value of about $300 million.

The Pentagon earlier this year signaled its intent to significantly scale back its commercial satellite imagery purchases starting in 2013.



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