SDA Requests Info on PNT Service Payload for Tranche 2 Transport Layer

The Space Development Agency is seeking information on industry sources that could provide a position, navigation and timing service payload for the second tranche of the National Defense Space Architecture’s transport layer.

SDA intends to proliferate a low cost L-band PNT service payload on the Tranche 2 Transport Layer, according to a request for information published Thursday.

The PNT payload would include a mid-size high powered amplifier, on-orbit reprogrammable PNT signal generator and a fixed wide beam width antenna. 

According to the RFI, the Department of Defense and combatant commands have identified the potential role of SDA’s proliferated constellation in low-Earth orbit in the transmission of a PNT service that would complement or serve as a backup to GPS.

In this way, the SDA PNT service could serve as a forward-looking capability within navigation warfare (NAVWAR) resilience planning and operations. Implementation of the SDA PNT service would be compatible with military service planned software-defined PNT receiver user equipment programs (SDUE) and, potentially, as a software upgrade to the Modernized GPS User Equipment (MGUE) Increment 2 program,” the notice reads.

Responses to the RFI are due Nov. 21.

In March, SDA awarded prototype agreements to Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC) and York Space Systems to build and demonstrate 126 satellites for the Tranche 1 Transport Layer.

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