NASA is requesting information from U.S. companies interested in pursuing unfunded partnerships to develop integrated systems that will advance the development of commercial space products and services for human space exploration and operations. NASA officials describe the effort as a win-win-win for industry, NASA and the nation.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co., Sunnyvale, Calif., is being awarded a $9,552,979 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to provide security hardware, associated software, equipment installation, system test, accreditation, certification and delivery of nuclear weapon security system equipment at U.S. Navy Installations. This contract contains options, which if exercised, will bring the contract value to $10,917,152. The Navy's Strategic Systems Programs, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity (N00030-13-C-0043).
Seven projects from six universities will be put to the test in NASA and the National Space Grant Foundation’s 2014 Exploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge, a program designed to heighten students’ interest in spaceflight-related disciplines and complement NASA’s current research and development on deep-space habitats.
On-the-move communications go digital for troops in regular or disadvantaged locations.
The Boeing Co., Seal Beach, Calif., has been awarded a $10,892,553 cost-plus-award-fee contract modification for contractor logistic support, analysis, and Type III anomaly support for the Space Based Space Surveillance Block 10 System. This modification provides for the exercise of an option for these services, which are provided under the basic contract. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center/Space Superiority Directorate, Los Angeles, Calif., is the contracting activity.
NASA has exercised a contract option with Lockheed Martin Corp. of Gaithersburg, Md., to provide continued mission control systems services, development, maintenance and operations support as part of the Facilities Development and Operations Contract. The extension has a total estimated value of $166.8 million and extends the period of performance through Sept. 30, 2014. The total contract value has been increased to $1 billion.
The U.S. Defense Department has signed a space situational awareness (SSA) memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Australia’s Department of Defence. The MOU permits the the two countries to exchange SSA data, which facilitates transparency and improve flight safety.
Future conflicts likely will be fought in degraded information technology environments, which will require the U.S. Navy to develop and exploit new capabilities to continue to operate in contested cyberspace. Technologies such as a flexible information grid, assured timing services and directed energy weapons must be part of the naval information system arsenal if the sea service is to maintain information dominance through the year 2028.
NASA has selected three companies to provide engineering solutions and products to Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. The companies are Radiance Technologies Inc. and Teledyne Brown Engineering Inc., Huntsville, Ala., and Wyle Laboratories Inc., Houston, Texas. The performance-based, cost-reimbursement fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contracts have a potential value of $350 million.
To facilitate multinational operations, the European Defence Agency (EDA) has set a future communications project in motion to study the terrestrial and satellite communication network systems in European Union (EU) countries. In this initial step of what will be a four-phase project, the primary EU member states’ existing and future assets will be inventoried. During the first phase of the project, operational scenarios and capability requirements will be identified.
The latest generation Tracking and Data Relay Satellite, TDRS-K, updates existing technology with an eye to the future. New electronics and better power management will help extend the TDRS constellation for at least another decade, but NASA already is looking ahead to major changes in the system’s capabilities that would define the next-generation TDRS.
Earthbound technologies and computer programming that make most popular video games possible are driving development of the remote-controlled robots now in use by NASA in the unmanned exploration of Mars and the solar system. Those improvements in both hardware and software also spur innovation in the next generation of robots envisioned for use by government and industry. That is important because NASA recently has proposed a new, multiyear program of sending robot explorers to Mars, culminating in the launch of another large scientific rover in the year 2020.
Pacific Defense Solutions LLC, Kihei, Hawaii is being awarded a $9,724,737 cost plus fixed fee contract for space situational awareness research and development. The contracting activity is Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M.
Students age 14 to 18 can compete to have astronauts in space carry out their experiments if they win the Space Lab challenge. Budding scientists must upload a video outlining their idea, but they don't have to carry out the experiments themselves.
A new strategy for certifying commercial launch vehicles aims to expand the number of companies qualified for space launch missions. The entrant launch vehicle certification strategy is a cooperative effort between the U.S. Air Force, the National Reconnaissance Office and NASA.
No matter how vast it seems, even space gets a little crowded. Hundreds of active satellites and thousands of pieces of space junk clutter the area surrounding Earth-from lost astronaut tools to pieces of rockets. To help track and identify the debris, the U.S. Air Force is replacing its aging and outdated Air Force Space Surveillance System, which has been in service for 50 years.
The Pennsylvania State University Applied Research Laboratory, State College, has been awarded a $150 million contract modification to increase the contract ceiling, providing up to 1,560,000 additional staff hours to provide research, development, engineering, test and evaluation. The core areas include guidance, navigation and control of undersea systems, advanced thermal propulsion, materials and manufacturing technology, atmosphere and defense communications and other related technologies. Research and development areas include, but are not limited to, missiles, radar, sonar, space, und