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SDA to Issue Industry Solicitation for Tranche 1 Missile Tracking Satellites

The Space Development Agency is planning to issue a solicitation in the coming weeks for a layer of low-Earth orbit satellites that will track adversarial missiles.

SDA is expected to award contracts to two or more vendors for 28 spacecraft that will comprise the agency’s tracking layer of Tranche 1, which is slated to begin launching in 2025, FedScoop reported Tuesday.

Dr. Derek Tournear, director of the SDA and previous Wash100 Award recipient, said these satellites are part of the national defense space architecture that the SDA is building as the foundation for the Defense Department’s transformational JADC2 initiative.

“We will tie together Army, Navy and Air Force to make sure that they interoperate seamlessly as we provide the backbone to tie all of the sensors and shooters from each of the services together,” Dr. Tournear said during a panel briefing ahead of the 2022 McAleese Defense Programs Conference

Dr. Tournear is scheduled to keynote the Second Annual Industrial Space Defense Summit hosted by the Potomac Officers Club on May 17. Registrations are open now!

The budget for Tranche 1 is estimated to be $2.5 billion in total. With the recently passed $1.5 trillion fiscal year 2022 omnibus spending bill, the SDA received an additional $550 million to fund and accelerate the launch of the Tranche 1 tracking layer.  

SDA has sought multiple rounds of industry feedback on drafts of the Tranche 1 tracking layer solicitation, in efforts to take it live quickly once Congress approved the funding.

The agency’s Tranche 0, or “warfighter immersion tranche,” is reportedly about 30 weeks from launch. With 28 satellites, Tranche 0 will form a “demonstration mesh” that warfighters will use in a training capacity to familiarize themselves with the infrastructure. 

This first deployment of satellites will deliver low-latency tactical connectivity and communications to existing Department of Defense systems and warfighters.

Join the Potomac Officers Club on May 17 for the platform’s Second Annual Industrial Space Defense Summit to hear from leading voices in the space domain across government and industry as they discuss the technological innovations, strategic priorities, challenges and opportunities surrounding the most rapidly growing domain of today.

Register now to save your spot.

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