Boeing awarded contract modification for WGS satellite support

Press Release From: Los Angeles Air Force Base
Posted: Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Boeing has been awarded a contract modification for services required to ensure continued Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite operations and logistics sustainment support.

The contract modification, worth around $10 million, was awarded by U.S. Air Force Space Command’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) located at Los Angeles Air Force Base, California. Fiscal 2018 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of around $1 million are being obligated at the time of award.

Work will be performed at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado; El Segundo, California; and Colorado Springs, Colorado, with an expected completion date of Dec. 31, 2018.

Wideband Global SATCOM system (WGS) is a high capacity satellite communications (SATCOM) system planned for use in partnership by the United States’ Department of Defense (DoD) and the Australian Department of Defence. The system is composed of the Space Segment satellites, the Terminal Segment users and the Control Segment operators.         

The primary contractor for the satellites is Boeing Satellite Development Center, which is building them around the Boeing 702 satellite platform.

The end users of the communication services provided by the WGS are described by the DoD as the terminal segment. Users include the Australian Defence Force and U.S. Army ground mobile terminals, U.S. Navy ships and submarines, national command authorities for the nuclear forces, and various national security/allied national forces.

The constellation of WGS satellites increases the communications capabilities of the militaries of the United States, Canada, and Australia by providing additional bandwidth and communications capabilities for tactical command and control, communications, and computer; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR); battle management; and combat support information.

WGS also augments the current Ka-band Global Broadcast Service (on UHF F/O satellites) by providing additional information broadcast capabilities as well as providing new two-way capability on that band.

DoD wideband satellite communication services are currently provided by a combination of the existing Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) and Global Broadcast Service (GBS) satellites. According to United Launch Alliance (ULA), a single WGS spacecraft has as much bandwidth as the entire existing DSCS constellation.

The combination of the Wideband Global Satellites, DSCS satellites, GBS payloads, wideband payload and platform control assets, and earth terminals operating with them has been referred to as the Interim Wideband System (IWS).

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