The U.S. Space Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) has awarded the final payload development contracts for Protected Tactical SATCOM (PTS) acquisition with Boeing and Lockheed Martin, on Feb. 28.
The contract with Boeing is worth $191 million and the one with Lockheed Martin is $240 million, according to a statement released by SMC.
With the new contract awards, Boeing and Lockheed Martin will join Northrop Grumman as the three prime contractors for PTS payload development. Northrop Grumman was awarded the first payload development contract for the PTS acquisition, worth $253.6 million, on Feb. 12.
The companies were selected for the award through the Space Enterprise Consortium (SpEC). All three prime contractors will use sub-contractors that are non-traditional, keeping with the culture of the SpEC.
“We are thrilled to add Boeing and Lockheed Martin to the PTS effort,” said Col. Dennis O. Bythewood, program executive officer for space development. “The technology maturation and prototyping effort conducted under SpEC will allow SMC to harness the innovation of partnerships between traditional defense and non-traditional/small business contractors with a projected on-orbit capability three years earlier than a traditional acquisition.”
PTS is the space component of the Protected Anti-jam Tactical SATCOM (Satellite Communications) family-of-systems architecture that will provide resilient, worldwide, beyond line-of-sight (BLOS), anti-jam communications to tactical warfighters, resulting in improved combat effectiveness and fewer combat losses. The PTS rapid-prototyping spiral will focus on demonstrating the modularity, scalability, hostability, and operational utility of the payload.
PTS is an SMC pacesetter program, demonstrating new processes while delivering rapid capabilities, and supporting SMC’s commitment to radically reducing time from acquisition to warfighter utilization.
This effort uses the FY 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Section 804 – “Middle Tier of Acquisition for Rapid Prototyping and Rapid Fielding,” and the FY 2016 NDAA Section 815 – “Amendments to Other Transaction Authority” to achieve an affordable, rapidly delivered, operational capability for tactical warfighters.