Military Space Quarterly
Contractors in the hunt to build the GPS satellites the U.S. Air Force will launch next decade are already touting their work on a fully digital navigation payload, an upgrade lawmakers want the Air Force to include when it finally places a follow-on order for the GPS 3 satellites now being built.
The U.S. Air Force is sharing what service officials have described as “eye-watering” data from its missile warning satellites with the intelligence community as part of a wider effort to maximize exploitation of the system.
The U.S. Air Force is studying the feasibility of a common ground system that would be available in the early 2020s to track and communicate with national security satellites, a move service leaders see as a way to save money, increase capability and improve responsiveness.
The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency hopes to start as many as five new space development programs next year in areas including space threat awareness and satellite propulsion technology.
The U.S. Air Force, which is developing an experimental tactical missile warning sensor slated for launch late next year, has unveiled tentative plans to follow that up with a strategic sensor demo that would launch in 2019 or 2020.
The U.S. Air Force is growing increasingly concerned that the $1.6 billion ground system for its next-generation GPS satellites will not be ready when needed and is putting a backup plan in motion.
The U.S. Air Force is contemplating an expanded role for the rapid-response space development shop it proposed shuttering as recently as last year, but the service has yet to identify how it plans to fund the office beyond next year.
France’s long search for a European partner and co-investor in a next-generation optical reconnaissance satellite system has paid off with the agreement by Germany to help finance a third satellite in return for access to the full three-satellite system.