Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

BAE Systems wins $450 million contract to build weather satellite instrument

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun8,2024

SAN FRANCISCO — BAE Systems, the former Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., won a $450 contract to develop an ocean-color instrument for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s next geostationary weather constellation.

The cost-plus-award-fee contract announced May 20 directs BAE Systems to develop two flight instruments to analyze ocean color for the Geostationary Extended Operations, or GeoXO, program. BAE Systems will support 10 years of in-orbit operations and five years of in-orbit storage for each GeoXO Ocean Color Instrument, or OCX. The contract includes options for additional flight instruments.

GeoXO, the follow-on to the ongoing Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites – R Series program, is NOAA’s largest procurement in history. The $19.6 billion budget approved last year covers six satellites, operations and support extending to 2052.

Coastal Waters and Great Lakes

With OCX observations, NOAA will monitor U.S. coastal waters, the Great Lakes and the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone, observing biology, chemistry, productivity, ecosystem change, water quality, seafood safety and hazards like harmful algal blooms. OCX is expected to delivery updated information “at least every three hours,” providing “a more frequent and comprehensive view of ocean and coastal conditions than is currently available,” according to the news release.

The OCX instrument is designed to supply information on ocean and coastal ecosystem changes to forecasters, marine resource managers, fisheries, health departments, water treatment managers, and the commerce, recreation and tourism industries. 

Under the OCX contract, BAE Systems will design, analyze, develop, fabricate, integrate, test, verify and evaluate the new ocean color instrument. In addition, BAE Systems will support the launch, supply and maintain the ground support equipment, and aide mission operations at the NOAA Satellite Operations Facility in Suitland, Maryland.

NASA-NOAA Partnership

NOAA and NASA are working together to establish the GeoXO program. NOAA funds and manages the program, operations and data products.

NASA and commercial partners develop and build the instruments and spacecraft and launch the satellites. NASA selected BAE Systems to build OCX for NOAA.

BAE Systems also is developing the GeoXO air quality sensor under a $365 million contract announced May 1.

The GeoXO Imager is being developed by L3Harris Technologies under a $765.5 million contract announced in March.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “BAE Systems wins $450 million contract to build weather satellite instrument”
  1. I think this is a significant step towards better understanding and monitoring our ocean and coastal environments. The development of the ocean-color instrument by BAE Systems will provide valuable data for analyzing changes in biology, chemistry, and ecosystem dynamics. I look forward to the positive impact this will have on managing marine resources and ensuring environmental sustainability.

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