Press Release

Lockheed Martin Delivers Key Hardware For Third Advanced EHF Military Communications Satellite

By SpaceRef Editor
December 27, 2006
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SUNNYVALE, Calif., December 22, 2006 — Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] today announced that it has delivered ahead of schedule the flight structure for the third space vehicle in the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) program to the company’s Mississippi facility for integration with its propulsion subsystem.  AEHF satellites will provide global, highly secure, protected, survivable communications for warfighters in all services within the Department of Defense.

Over the next several months, a team of engineers and technicians at Lockheed Martin’s Mississippi Space & Technology Center, an advanced propulsion, thermal, and metrology facility located at the John C. Stennis Space Center, will integrate the spacecraft’s propulsion subsystem, which is essential for maneuvering the satellite during transfer orbit to its final location as well as conducting on-orbit operations and repositioning maneuvers throughout its mission life. 

AEHF satellites are based on Lockheed Martin’s flight-proven A2100 geosynchronous spacecraft series and will deliver 10 times greater total capacity and channel data rates six times higher than that of Milstar II communications satellites.  The higher data rates permit transmission of tactical military communications such as real-time video, battlefield maps and targeting data.

Lockheed Martin is currently under contract to provide three Advanced EHF satellites and command control system to its customer, the Military Satellite Communications Systems Wing at the Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles, Calif.  The contract for a third AEHF spacecraft was awarded early this year. 

“Delivery of the third AEHF flight structure in just 10 months since contract start is a significant achievement and reflects the team’s commitment to successfully executing this critical program,” said Julie Sattler, vice president, Lockheed Martin Space Systems.  “AEHF will provide unprecedented communications capabilities to the warfighter and we look forward to achieving mission success for our customer.”

Production of the first two satellites is also progressing on-schedule.  In early 2007, the integrated propulsion module for the first AEHF space vehicle is scheduled for delivery from Mississippi to Lockheed Martin’s facilities in Sunnyvale, Calif.  Northrop Grumman Space Technology, Redondo Beach, Calif., the AEHF payload provider, is also on track to ship the first payload module to Sunnyvale early next year.

With the propulsion module and payload in place, the team will begin final assembly, integration and test in preparation for launch in April 2008.  Development of the second AEHF satellite is following close behind and proceeding on schedule for launch in April 2009.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, a major operating unit of Lockheed Martin Corporation, designs, develops, tests, manufactures and operates a full spectrum of advanced-technology systems for national security, civil and commercial customers. Chief products include human space flight systems; a full range of remote sensing, navigation, meteorological and communications satellites and instruments; space observatories and interplanetary spacecraft; laser radar; fleet ballistic missiles; and missile defense systems.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2005 sales of $37.2 billion.

Contact: Steve Tatum, 408-742-7531; e-mail,

SpaceRef staff editor.