Defense agency awards satellite imagery pact

The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency has awarded Orbimage Inc. a satellite-imaging contract under its ClearView program.

The Dulles, Va., company's 22-month contract has a minimum guarantee of $27.6 million.

Orbimage joins DigitalGlobe Inc. of Longmont, Colo., and Space Imaging LLC of Thornton, Colo., to work on the Defense Department program.

The ClearView contracts require the vendors to deliver high-resolution satellite images to NGA. The vendors must provide images with nominal ground sampling distances of one meter or less.

'This is an important step because it helps make the commercial satellite capabilities of the United States even more viable and robust,' the NGA director, retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James R. Clapper Jr., said in a statement.

Meanwhile, NGA continues to work on the follow-on to ClearView.

Through NextView, the agency wants to assure access to next-generation commercial satellite imagery. So far, it has awarded one contract, to DigitalGlobe, for this R&D initiative.

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