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SMC Announces Feasibility Assessment Contracts for Next Round of GPS III Satellite Competition

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May 6, 2016
Inside GNSS, May/June 2016

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The USAF Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) announced today (May 5, 2016) the award of three contracts to support companies in preparing for the competition to build additional GPS Block III space vehicles (SVs).

The SMC’s GPS Directorate at Los Angeles Air Force Base, California, will award one GPS III Phase 1 Production Readiness Feasibility Assessment contract to each of the following companies: Boeing Network and Space Systems, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, and Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.

The three GPS III Space Vehicles 11+ Phase 1 Production Readiness Feasibility Assessment contracts are firm, fixed-price contracts not to exceed $6 million, with a base contract of $5 million, plus two $500,000 options. The periods of performance are 26 months for the basic contract, and six months each for the two options, for a total possible period of performance of 38 months.

“Industry told us they were ready to compete for the GPS III space vehicles. We look forward to working with Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman to assess the feasibility of a follow-on, competitive production contract,” said Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves, SMC commander and Air Force program executive officer for space.

According to the Air Force, the scope of these contracts include insight into each of the contractor’s readiness efforts in preparation for the Phase 2 competition for production SVs and includes access to design artifacts as well as a demonstration of navigation payload capability. GPS III SV11+ will use the current GPS III SV01-08 requirements baseline with the addition of a redesigned Nuclear Detonation Detection System Government Furnished Equipment (GFE) hosted payload, a search and rescue/GPS GFE–hosted payload, a laser retro-reflector array GFE–hosted payload, unified S-Band compliance capability, and a regional military protection capability. GPS III SV11+ designs are not allow to require changes to the GPS Next Generation Operational Control System or Military GPS User Equipment interfaces.

The Air Force released the request for proposals for the feasibility assessment contracts in January.

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