PALO ALTO, California – March 28, 2013 – Space Systems/Loral (SSL), a leading provider of commercial satellites, today announced that it has been selected to study the feasibility of accommodating next-generation U.S. military weather systems on commercial polar orbiting satellites. SSL will examine options for the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center to lower its cost to replace the legacy Defense Meteorological Satellite Program, through the use of alternative architectures such as equipping commercial satellites with advanced meteorological sensors.
The six-month study contract was awarded under a broad agency announcement issued in June 2012. SSL will study the technical feasibility of hosting a third generation meteorological instrument on an SSL commercial bus platform; identify commercial business opportunities that the Air Force can leverage to achieve weather sensing from a Highly Inclined Elliptical Orbit (HIEO); and quantify the value proposition for performing the mission in this non-traditional fashion.
“SSL can bring the benefits of a shared platform to both its commercial and government customers,” said David Anhalt, vice president, U.S. Government Solutions, SSL. “We commend the Air Force and SMC for its leadership in looking to alternative architectures in order to reduce costs and speed the delivery of next generation systems.”
As a satellite manufacturer that works with most of the world’s leading satellite operators, SSL is well-positioned to find suitable opportunities for placing government payloads on commercial spacecraft. SSL also has experience building dedicated HIEO satellites, which can provide a persistent view of arctic latitudes for the next generation weather program.
The company’s experience includes the first constellation of three satellites designed and built for Sirius XM Satellite Radio, which were launched into 24 hour Tundra orbits in 2000. This fleet of HIEO satellites continues to provide service today.
Additionally, the SSL satellite platform is particularly well-suited to hosted payloads because of its size and high power capability. The company’s extensive hosted payload experience includes SES-5, a commercial telecommunications satellite, which was launched in 2012 and hosts a navigation payload for the European Union. SSL also built Intelsat-14, which hosted the first commercial Internet Router in Space (IRIS) and was successfully launched in 2009. SSL’s experience with hosted payloads also includes Optus-C1, built for SingTel Optus, which was launched in 2003. Optus-C1 provides commercial communications services in Australia and also hosts several milsatcom payloads for the Australian Defence Forces.
SSL has a long history of delivering reliable satellites and spacecraft systems for commercial and government customers around the world. As the world’s leading provider of commercial satellites, the company works closely with satellite operators to provide spacecraft for a broad range of services including television and radio distribution, digital audio radio, broadband Internet, and mobile communications. Billions of people around the world depend on SSL satellites every day. For more information, visit www.ssloral.com.
This news release contains forward-looking statements and information, which reflect the current view of Space Systems/Loral (SSL) with respect to future events and financial performance. When used in this news release, the words “believes”, “expects”, “plans”, “may”, “will”, “would”, “could”, “should”, “anticipates”, “estimates”, “project”, “intend” or “outlook” or other variations of these words or other similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements and information. Actual results may differ materially from the expectations expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements as a result of known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Known risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to: risks associated with operating satellites and providing satellite services, including satellite construction or launch delays, launch failures, in-orbit failures or impaired satellite performance; risks associated with satellite manufacturing, including competition, cyclicality of SSL’s end-user markets, contractual risks, creditworthiness of customers, performance of suppliers and management of SSL’s factory and personnel; risk associated with financial factors such as volatility in exchange rates, increases in interest rates, restrictions on access to capital, and swings in global financial markets; risks associated with domestic and foreign government regulation, including export controls and economic sanctions; and other risks, including litigation. The foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive. The information contained in this news release reflects SSL’s beliefs, assumptions, intentions, plans and expectations as of the date of this news release. Except as required by law, SSL disclaims any obligation or undertaking to update or revise the information herein.