L-3 Telemetry-West (L-3 TW) announced today that it has been awarded a contract from Thales Alenia Space to provide satellite command decryption capabilities for the Iridium NEXT space program.
Iridium NEXT, the most comprehensive commercial space program under way, is planned to start launching in 2015. The Iridium NEXT constellation will comprise 66 low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites connected by crosslinks, with an additional six in-orbit spares and nine spares available on the ground.
L-3 TW’s Space Systems group will supply multiple command decryptor units that, when installed on the Iridium NEXT satellites, will decrypt the command signals from the ground to various functions of each satellite.
“We have been pursuing this application ever since 2009 when initial plans for the new constellation were beginning to take shape,” said Larry Dobbs, director of business development for L-3 TW’s Space Systems group. “We are very pleased to be a part of the Iridium NEXT program in providing a key Information Assurance product role.”
Scott Smith, executive vice president of satellite development and operations for Iridium, said, “Iridium today is a vital component in the global communications infrastructure, and we are excited about expanding our capabilities even further through Iridium NEXT. But we cannot do it without innovative solutions, such as the command decryption only L-3 TW can provide.”
Source: L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. (NYSE: LLL)
Date: May 7, 2012