The U.S. Space Force has awarded Lockheed Martin a $511 million contract for two new GPS 3F satellites. The contract was finalised on October 7th, on the basis of a 2018 deal.
GPS 3F, the latest version of the satellites, offer global positioning, navigation, and timing services. They are also equipped with a completely digital navigation payload, and their signals possess better protection against jamming and other kinds of interference, reported SpaceNews.
The U.S. Air Force had signed a deal to purchase up to 22 satellites from Lockheed Martin for $7.2 billion, in September 2018, and on the 26th of the same month, it also awarded the company a $1.3 billion contract for two GPS 3F satellites called space vehicles 11 and 12.
The next and most recent $511 million contract is for space vehicles 13 and 14. It’s a much smaller one, as the previous contract also included development costs.
The deal was finalised after the satellites cleared a critical design review to ensure its risk assessment, earlier this year.
SMC stated that this latest version of the GPS 3F satellites offers better anti-jam protection, along with a new search-and-rescue hosted payload built jointly with Canada, a redesigned nuclear detonation detection system, and a new laser retroreflector array hosted payload.