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SDNews
2012-07-31 08:54:43

Boeing has received a $338.7 million contract modification from the U.S. Air Force to produce and launch a tenth Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite.

The authorization includes production, launch site activities, initial orbital operations and checkout.

Boeing is working with the Air Force on potential cost-effective upgrades that would further increase the WGS satellites' capacity and operational flexibility. In June, Boeing was contracted to implement an enhanced Wideband Digital Channelizer upgrade that provides a 90 percent improvement in satellite bandwidth -- with no additional cost to the government. The new channelizer will be included on satellites WGS-8 and beyond.

The contract announcement comes six months after Congress provided funding for the Air Force in fiscal year 2012 to purchase WGS-10. This additional order is part of the WGS Block II follow-on contract, under which Boeing had previously been authorized for production and launch of WGS-7 through WGS-9.

The Block II program also is proceeding well. WGS-4, the first in the Block II series, was launched on Jan. 19 and handed over to the Air Force on April 11. The launches of WGS-5 and WGS-6 are scheduled for 2013.



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