Latest News

US Air Force Awards Orbital ATK with Integration Contract

By | February 13, 2017
      Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) concept art.

      Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) concept art. Photo: NASA.

      U.S. Air Force Space and Missiles System Center has awarded Orbital ATK a contract to provide payload integration and support services for Space Test Program Satellite 6 (STPSat-6). The multipurpose satellite will operationally demonstrate advanced communication capabilities, collect space weather data and support nuclear detonation detection in the Earth’s atmosphere or in near space. STPSat-6 is the primary payload on the STP-3 mission, which is set to launch no earlier than June 2019.

      STPSat-6 will be built on Orbital ATK’s modular A-500 bus, which will be modified to fit mission requirements. Under the contract, Orbital ATK will integrate and test the spacecraft, deliver operations procedures, and support launch and on-orbit check-out. The satellite will carry nine payloads from the Department of Defense (DOD), the National Nuclear Security Administration and NASA.

      The multiple payloads on board STPSat-6 include the Space and Atmospheric Burst Reporting System (SABRS-3), NASA’s Laser Communication Relay Demonstration (LCRD), and seven experiments from the DOD Space Experiments Review Board. Orbital ATK’s heritage bus and avionics product line is designed to support multiple payloads and can be adapted to support the customer’s desired mission life.

      The Space Test Program (STP), which is the primary provider of spaceflight for the DOD space science and technology community, sponsors and manages the STP-3 mission. The Advanced Systems and Development Directorate of the Space and Missile Center manages STP.