Space Systems Command Awards 8 National Security Launch Services Task Orders to ULA, SpaceX

Space Systems Command has issued five launch service task orders to United Launch Alliance and another three to SpaceX under the National Security Space Launch Phase 2 contract that the U.S. Space Force awarded in August 2020.

ULA, a joint venture of Boeing (NYSE: BA) and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), will use its Vulcan Centaur rocket to provide launch services for GPS III-7, Wideband Global SatCom-11, USSF-23, USSF-43 and USSF-16 missions.

SpaceX will use its Falcon 9 launch vehicle to support three missions: USSF-124, USSF-62 and a Space Development Agency mission in support of the Tranche 1 Transport Layer.

The command said USSF-23, USSF-16 and USSF-43 are classified missions that will launch from the eastern range aboard ULA’s Vulcan Centaur vehicles.

The WGS-11 mission is expected to reach a geosynchronous transfer orbit upon its launch from the eastern range atop the ULA rocket, while the GPS III-7 mission is one of the 10 GPS III missions that is expected to reach medium Earth transfer orbit once it lifts off from a Vulcan Centaur vehicle.

The USSF-124 mission will take off from the eastern range aboard a Falcon 9 to reach low-Earth orbit, while the USSF-62 mission includes the first Weather System Follow-on satellite that will lift off from the western range atop the SpaceX-built rocket.

Brig. Gen. Stephen Purdy, SSC program executive officer, assured access to space, said the issuance of the task orders represents the Space Force’s key role in sending space capabilities into orbit to address emerging threats.

We launch the nation’s ‘eyes and ears,’ secure communications, GPS, and Space Awareness that provide our warfighters and national decision-makers with the vital information they need to protect our nation and allies,” Purdy added.

The command expects the missions to launch in the next two years.

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