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SDA, Lockheed Conclude Critical Design Review of Tranche 1 Transport Layer

Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) has wrapped up the critical design review of its satellites and related ground systems for the first tranche of the transport layer as part of the Space Development Agency’s Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture.

The CDR phase included a system optical communications terminal interoperability test and design validation tests and involved the production and use of a 3D-printed replica of the Tranche 1 satellite vehicle testbed, the company said Monday.

Lockheed is manufacturing 42 of the 126 satellites for the T1TL project under a $700 million prototype agreement awarded by SDA in February 2022. 

The T1TL constellation will deliver low-latency military connectivity to warfighter systems worldwide using laser optical intersatellite links and Link-16 waveforms in support of the U.S. military’s joint all-domain operations.

“The strength of our relationships and thoroughness of the review positions Lockheed Martin to deliver the T1TL satellites on time for SDA’s 2024 launch,” said Chris Winslett, director for the SDA Transport Layer programs at Lockheed.

The company will now transition its space vehicles to the integration and testing phase at its 20,000-square-foot facility.

Lockheed also produced 10 satellites for SDA’s Tranche 0 Transport Layer under a $187.5 million contract awarded in 2020 and expects the satellites to launch in the summer of 2023.

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