Space

September 25, 2012

Lockheed Martin achieves key software milestone for Iridium NEXT communications satellite

A “switchboard in the sky” for the Iridium NEXT constellation of global communication satellites is one step closer to becoming reality as Lockheed Martincompleted a major software design milestone.

Lockheed Martin’s Application Software for the Iridium NEXT constellation held the Critical Design Review, which showed that the design is at a high level of maturity and keeps this new generation of communications satellites solidly on schedule toward a first launch in 2015.

The Iridium NEXT satellites are slated to replace those currently in the Iridium® constellation of 66 cross-linked low-Earth orbiting satellites. Iridium NEXT will provide continuous coverage over 100 percent of the Earth’s surface as well as substantially enhance Iridium mobile communications services.

“Successfully completing this milestone verifies that the Iridium NEXT application software will operate as promised to deliver greatly enhanced telecommunications services,” said Bob Kramer, vice president of Operational Systems & Services for Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions-Defense. “The new software supports all capabilities currently available to Iridium subscribers and its modular design will allow 3G services to be seamlessly implemented into the new constellation.”

Lockheed Martin, a member of the Iridium NEXT Mission Team under contract to develop and build the NEXT constellation of satellites, completed the Critical Design Review in September. During this review, the design for the application software, which performs the primary role in supporting subscriber services to user terminals, was rigorously reviewed by teams from Iridium, Thales Alenia Space and Lockheed Martin to ensure it will support all the functions needed for Iridium NEXT satellites. Lockheed Martin’s architecture fully leverages a high performance multi-processor hardware platform and easily incorporates new services via insertion of software modules. This approach results in a satellite that is much more cost effective, modular and reconfigurable.

“Lockheed Martin’s completion of the CDR is an important step in our progress toward providing Iridium users with next-generation capabilities,” said Scott Smith, Executive Vice President, Satellite Development and Operations, Iridium. “The Iridium NEXT Mission Team will continue to work diligently to begin ushering in a new era of satellites to replace the current Iridium constellation.”

“With this successful milestone, Lockheed Martin is on track to deliver the most comprehensive solution for the payload application software, meeting the challenging requirements for Iridium NEXT,” said Nathalie Smirnov, VP Telecom Payloads & Systems of Thales Alenia Space. “We are proud to lead and coordinate this high class Iridium NEXT Mission Team.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
nasa-cassini

NASA Cassini images may reveal birth of new Saturn moon

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has documented the formation of a small icy object within the rings of Saturn that may be a new moon, and may also provide clues to the formation of the planet’s known moons. Images taken w...
 
 

NASA completes LADEE mission with planned impact on Moon’s surface

Ground controllers at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., have confirmed that NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer spacecraft impacted the surface of the moon, as planned, between 9:30 and 10:22 p.m., PDT, April 17. LADEE lacked fuel to maintain a long-term lunar orbit or continue science operations and was intentionally sent...
 
 
Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Kepler telescope discovers first Earth-size planet in ‘habitable zone’

Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech Kepler-186f resides in the Kepler-186 system about 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. The system is also home to four inner planets, seen lined up...
 

 

Lockheed Martin solar ultraviolet imager installed on GOES-R weather satellite

Lockheed Martin has delivered a new solar analysis payload that will help scientists measure and forecast space weather, which can damage satellites, electrical grids and communications systems on Earth. The Solar Ultraviolet Imager instrument was integrated with the first flight vehicle of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrationís next-generation Geostationary Operational Environm...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph

NASA’s Orion Spacecraft powers through first integrated system testing

Lockheed Martin photograph Engineers in the Operations and Checkout Building at NASAís Kennedy Space Center in Florida, perform avionics testing on the Orion spacecraft being prepared for its first trip to space later this yea...
 
 

NASA signs agreement with SpaceX for use of historic launch pad

NASA Kennedy Space Center’s historic Launch Complex 39A, the site from which numerous Apollo and space shuttle missions began, is beginning a new mission as a commercial launch site. NASA signed a property agreement with Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) of Hawthorne, Calif., on Monday for use and occupancy of the seaside complex along Florida’s...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>