Airbus Defense and Space has been awarded a contract by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a satellite bus in support of the Blackjack low-earth orbit satellite constellation network architecture demonstration program.
The Blackjack program seeks to acquire commercial satellite buses and integrate them with military sensors and payloads, thus providing savings. Airbus has teamed with Florida-based OneWeb Satellites to bid for the Blackjack service provider contract.
“Airbus has previously co-invested hundreds of millions of dollars in high-rate manufacturing technology and supply chain logistics to build large constellations of small satellites,” Airbus Defense and Space Inc Director of US Space Programs, Tim Deaver said in a statement.
“Airbus is committed to growing manufacturing capability in the US and our government customers can leverage this commercial capability to develop low-earth orbit constellations to complement large existing systems.”
CEO OneWeb Satellites, Tony Gingiss added, “We have created a game changer with our overall design, supply chain and production system. Our team is transforming the space industry and we are in the midst of demonstrating we can deliver on our promises.”