The United States is on track to launch hundreds of satellites into Low Earth Orbit in successive waves, or tranches in the next six years to ensure a resilient communications, sensor and weapons targeting system that cannot be disrupted, US Space Development Agency Director Derek Tournear told a space engineers conference.
“[We are] coming up with hundreds of satellites that do those missions that talk directly to a weapons platform,” Tournear told the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) AscentX Conference on National Security Space on Thursday. “We are getting tied closely with the Army, the Navy and the Air Forces JADC2 (Joint All Domain Command and Control) backbone for the department.”
Tournear explained the satellites will be deployed in different layers starting with those equipped with sensing capability such as infrared imaging and tracking.
“Every two years we will launch a viable product … hundreds of satellites allowing persistence,” he said.
On August 31, Tournear announced that the Space Development Agency awarded two contracts to develop a constellation of satellites that will serve as the communications backbone for other proposed systems.