Credit: Sierra Space

LOUISVILLE, Colo. – Jan. 16, 2024 – Sierra Space, a leading commercial space company building the first end-to-end business and technology platform in space, announced today that it has won a significant contract by the Space Development Agency (SDA) for 18 missile warning and tracking satellites.

The prime contract, valued at $740 million and awarded through an Other Transaction Authority (OTA), is for the design, production, delivery, operations and sustainment of 16 missile warning and tracking satellites and two satellites for missile defense and fire control. The contract includes two operational ground segments as well.

The satellites are for the portion of SDA’s proliferated space warfighting architecture known as Tranche 2 Tracking Layer, part of the Defense Department’s Low Earth Orbit constellation. Sierra Space’s solution will accelerate the capability to provide global, persistent indications, detection, warning, and tracking of conventional and advanced missile threats, including hypersonic missile systems. The company’s solution also delivers preliminary missile defense capability by incorporating fire control quality sensors into the constellation; it will generate fire control quality tracks that enable missile defense kill chains, a critical defense capability, to the warfighter.

“Under the $740 million SDA contract, Sierra Space will deliver an 18-satellite constellation for missile detection, and warning, with fire control quality tracks”, said Sierra Space CEO Tom Vice. “Given the strength of our experienced mission-driven team, disruptive innovative technologies, employment of differentiated commercial practices, significant investments in systems and infrastructure, and the ability to execute with reliable performance and on-time delivery of warfighting capabilities to orbit, we have secured approximately $1.3 billion in next generation space-based national security programs.”

“Missile warning and missile defense is critical to the safety and security of our nation and its people,” added Rusty Thomas, Chief Technology Officer and SVP/GM Space Applications at Sierra Space. “Past winners of prior tranches for the tracking layer mission have been traditional big primes. This award puts Sierra Space on the short list of companies that can deliver, as a prime, in missions critical to the warfighter.”

The tracking layer satellites carry two configurations of optical sensor payloads built by Sierra Space mission payload partner GEOST, a LightRidge Solutions company. GEOST develops and builds high performance, multi-orbit optical payloads that are affordable, low-weight and low-power, with integrated on-orbit processing and ground-based infrastructure.

This latest contract award makes Sierra Space the SDA’s newest supplier of satellites. The agreement includes a $20 million incentive payment for on-time delivery. The company will develop, integrate and test its space vehicles at Sierra Space’s satellite production facilities in Colorado.

About Sierra Space

Sierra Space is a leading commercial space company at the forefront of innovation and the commercialization of space in the Orbital Age®, building an end-to-end business and technology platform in space to benefit life on Earth. With more than 30 years and 500 missions of space flight heritage, the company is reinventing both space transportation with Dream Chaser®, the world’s only commercial spaceplane, and the future of space destinations with the company’s inflatable and expandable space station technology. Highly scalable and flexible, this innovative “softgoods” technology will define a new generation of space stations. Sierra Space also builds and delivers a host of systems and subsystems across solar power, mechanics and motion control, environmental control, life support, propulsion and thermal control, offering myriad space-as-a-service solutions for the new space economy.

Source: Sierra Space

Kris Christiaens's Avatar

Kris Christiaens

This article was published by FutureSpaceFlight founder and chief editor Kris Christiaens. Kris Christiaens has been passionate and fascinated by spaceflight and space exploration all his life and has written hundreds of articles on space projects, the commercial space industry and space missions over the past 20 years for magazines, books and websites. In late 2021, he founded the website FutureSpaceFlight with the goal of promoting new space companies and commercial space projects and compiling news of these start-ups and companies on one website.