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Rival teams submit their bids for JP9102 SATCOM program

Rival prime contractors Boeing and Lockheed Martin Australia have submitted their bids for Defence’s sovereign SATCOM project, JP9102. It’s expected other bidders, including Airbus and Optus, will also confirm some details of their proposals for this estimated $3 billion program.

Boeing’s bid is based on the U.S. military’s Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) system in which the ADF is already a participant, having paid for one of the WGS satellites itself. Boeing’s JP9102 offering builds on the capability developed for WGS-11+, the newest addition to the WGS constellation.

“Using the WGS-11+ design gives Australia a low-risk, proven next-generation satellite product which will meet Defence’s rapid delivery schedule,” said Matt Buckle, Space and Launch business director at Boeing Defence Australia.

Boeing’s solution will also feature a local supply chain including Saber Astronautics, Clearbox Systems, Leidos, ViaSat, Indigenous Defence and Infrastructure Consortium and Titomic and includes a substantial investment in Australian industry capabilities to deliver sovereign defence SATCOM for Australia.

“When coupled with UHF payloads currently provided by Boeing to the U.S. and Australian governments, and a locally-developed mission systems architecture, it puts us in a unique position to deliver an interoperable solution which maximises reuse of JP2008 infrastructure while providing a resilient and flexible SATCOM capability for the future,” said Buckle.

Lockheed Martin Australia’s bid also has a strong Australian supply chain designed to provide a sovereign MILSATCOM capability with superior coverage, capacity, resilience, and extensibility.

Lockheed Martin Australia’s JP9102 team developed an agile solution that will contribute to the ongoing growth of the nation’s sovereign space capabilities, according to David Ball, the company’s regional director for space. Australian industry capability is represented in every aspect of its JP9102 solution, from control segment software and ground stations to satellite operations facilities and spacecraft.

“From the beginning of this campaign, Lockheed Martin maximised Australia’s in-country space capabilities for JP9102,” said David Ball. “The space industry here brings a vast, diverse network of capabilities, and we’re already seeing two-way transfers of skills, know-how and technology. Spearheaded by Lockheed Martin’s unparalleled heritage in resilient MILSATCOM, our JP9102 team stands united and ready to deliver.”

Linfox is the latest addition to the company’s Australian supply chain and will provide support through warehouse provisioning and distribution operations. It joins an extensive network of Australian SMEs and team members: DXC, Conscia, Av-Comm, Calytrix Technologies, EM Solutions, Shoal Group, Clearbox Systems, STEM Punks and Ronson Gears.

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