[Satellite TODAY 06-18-12] The U.S. Air Force
has issued a request to the satellite industry for ideas on developing the next generation of military weather satellites and satellite sensor payloads, the U.S. Department of Defense
announced June 15.
The Air Force said companies would have one year to submit white papers on the topic, and that only those submitting acceptable ideas will be asked to bid on follow-on contracts. The solicitation asks for companies to submit their ideas for a new weather satellite and sensor in white papers due no later than July 1, 2013.
Air Force officials expect to spend $7 million in the initial phases of development to define the weather satellite itself, $6 million to define its microwave environmental sensor, and as much as $14 million to define its electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) environmental sensor.
“The space-based EO/IR weather sensors should be able to provide detailed imagery of conditions such as cloud cover and layers, cloud top temperature, snow cover, and sea ice,” the Air Force said in the request. “Our preference is to spend no more than $83 million total. Contracts should be for 12 to 15 months.”