Defense, NASA and NOAA award $4.5 billion satellite pact

Defense, NASA and NOAA award $4.5 billion satellite pact

A trio of agencies last Friday awarded a $4.5 billion contract to TRW Inc. to build a satellite system that will combine defense and environmental missions.

The National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System is a joint program of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, the Defense Department and NASA.

Under a $1 billion subcontract, Raytheon Co. will develop the ground system for the project. These include the Interface Data Processing Segment and Command, Control and Communications Segment subsystems.

IDPS will deliver massive amounts of data to civilian and military users to support forecasting, scientific research and tactical operations, Raytheon officials said. C3S will let DOD, NASA and NOAA manage satellite mission data and allocate satellite resources.

The agencies predict that the new satellite system will begin replacing separate military and civilian remote-sensing systems in 2009.

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