WGS-11+ satellite completes Preliminary Design Review

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An artists’ conception of the WGS 11+ satellite. (Courtesy of Boeing)
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The Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS)-11+ program completed its first ever, all-virtual Preliminary Design Review (PDR) culminating in the successful conclusion of the review on July 1, 2020, after an eight-month long campaign.

Leveraging the Space and Missile Systems Center’s cross-corps enterprise structure, the three-day event was co-chaired by SMC’s Production Corps and Portfolio Architect’s Mission System Integration leadership. Stakeholders across the Wideband community including system engineers from the Army, Navy and U.S. Space Force participated in the PDR. The WGS-11+ design was evaluated by all stakeholders against specific technical criteria to ensure the optimal capability is delivered to the warfighter. Zero liens were recorded and the WGS-11+ program was declared ready to proceed to detailed design. 

“This engineering design review is a key milestone because it means we are one step closer to delivering this groundbreaking satellite to the warfighter in record timing, significantly improving capacity and coverage to soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines.” said Col. John Dukes, SMC Production Corps’ Geosynchronous/Polar Division chief.

To overcome the challenges stemming from the COVID-19 Pandemic, the WGS Program office collaborated with Boeing and external stakeholders to conduct the PDR in an all-virtual environment.

“The successful accomplishment of this significant milestone demonstrates the WGS team’s commitment to delivering these new capabilities to our warfighters on time despite facing limitations in an unprecedented work environment.” said Maj. Shawna Matthys, WGS-11+ program manager.

With the PDR complete, WGS-11+ continues to be a SMC pacesetter program for the rapid application of the latest commercial technology our industry partners have to offer. The program continues to maintain an aggressive 5-year production schedule and is expected to deliver the satellite six months faster than legacy WGS satellites.

The revolutionary WGS-11+ satellite will have more coverage beams than the combined existing WGS constellation and will provide Combatant Commanders with twice the mission capability in contested environments. Each individual beam is shapeable and can be uniquely tailored to each situation. This enables increased mission flexibility and responsiveness with narrower beams that help protect against jamming while allowing greater frequency reuse. WGS-11+ will eventually join a constellation of ten WGS satellites currently on orbit, substantially enhancing global coverage of essential communication services for the Department of Defense and its allies.
 
 
 

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