Press Release

NASA Awards ATLAS Space Operations Space Relay Partnership and Services Study Contract

By SpaceRef Editor
May 6, 2019
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ATLAS Space Operations, Inc., a leading innovator in communications for the space industry, today announced NASA has awarded it a contract for the Space Communications and Navigation (SCaN) Program’s Space Relay Partnership and Services Study. Prime contractor ATLAS partnered in its proposal with Laser Light Communications, Inc, a leader in advanced optical communications and data distribution via its proprietary HALO Global Network.

Both firms are Founders of the Empower Space Alliance. As part of the contract, ATLAS will explore ways to help NASA enable new and greater scientific discovery, improve communication and navigation services, and reduce development and operations costs for both networks and missions.

During the evaluation process, NASA found that ATLAS’s proposal “would provide substantial value to the Government through completion of its study.” In recognition of ATLAS’s promising technology and industry experience, ATLAS was the only small business that was awarded a contract.

“ATLAS is pleased to be among the selected community which represents the depth and breadth of the emerging field of optical communications,” said Sean McDaniel, CEO and Founder of ATLAS. “NASA’s awarding of this contract to participate in the study is the latest step in ATLAS’ mission to demonstrate the value of integrating advanced commercial communication technology in government applications. We are especially proud to be the only small business and new entrant in this sector, which represents NASA and the Government’s interest in new approaches and applications in space communications.”

“Working with Atlas on its submission to NASA for this study, was a tangible extension of our existing relationship as Founders and Partners in the Empower Space Alliance” said Bob Brumley, CEO, Laser Light. “This study will enable us to outline and validate for NASA, the benefits of a secure, commercially-owned and operated solution for space-based optical communications in near Earth and Deep Space.”

ATLAS Space Operations is at SATELLITE 2019 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. from May 6-9, at booth 2142. There, attendees can learn more about this program. ATLAS industry experts will also be on hand to discuss the latest trends in space communications, including technology, security and the new space economy. To book interviews, please use the contact information below.

About ATLAS Space Operations

ATLAS Space Operations, Inc., based in Traverse City, Michigan, empowers global access to space through FreedomTM, a simple solution for processing and analyzing data from space, through a global antenna network, powered by a revolutionary cloud-based software. ATLAS’s forward-thinking communications solutions are transforming the space industry by making ground communications simple, affordable and scalable than ever before. For more information on ATLAS Space Operations, please visit

About Laser Light Communications

Laser Light intends to deploy its proprietary All Optical Hybrid Global Communications Network – HALO. The service capacity of the planned HALO Global Network will be +33Tbps. The HALO network – satellite and SD-WAN’s – will be fully interconnected with Laser Light’s proprietary Extended Ground Network System (XGNS), a greenfield software-defined fiber network, and its patented StarBeam operating system, ensuring its customers carrier-grade service, enhanced redundancy, resiliency, and unprecedented privacy & security. HALO is designed to support its “Optical Satellite as a Service” (O-SaaS) product suite – Global Access 100Gbps Circuits and its proprietary HALO Direct Connect service – for global enterprises, data centers, media, finance firms; carriers; and government entities.

About the Empower Space Alliance

The Empower Space Alliance is the first space to ground global data distribution joint venture to exclusively use optical communications, and is comprised of Xenesis, ATLAS Space Operations, and Laser Light Communications. Empower Space™ will provide a turnkey direct optical data distribution service from spacecraft to customer locations, worldwide. Empower Space™ intends to serve LEO, MEO, GEO, Cislunar, and Deep Space customers with standardized interoperability, robust data capacity and unprecedented access to customer locations worldwide. Space data platforms will now have a choice between relying on radio frequency (RF) transmission and distribution, or higher capacity all optical “direct delivery” of their data to its ultimate distribution…on a single network.

SpaceRef staff editor.