DARPA awards Blackjack contracts to Blue Canyon, SA Photonics

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by — June 10, 2020

Blue Canyon obtained a contract. SA Photonics’ contract is right for communications terminals.

The Blackjack application is a test to demonstrate that the military utility of low Earth orbit constellations and mesh networks of cheap satellites.
Both firms already had been chosen as a member of a pool of Blackjack satellite bus and payload suppliers and’d obtained study contracts. These contracts are to create hardware.
Where fresh payloads can be added without needing to redesign the bus, DARPA would like to create plug-and-play satellites. That strategy would enable the army to speed up the creation and also lower the cost of satellites compared to traditional acquisitions of spacecraft.
DARPA intends to establish the very first two satellites in 18 and late 2020 increased.
The contract awarded to Blue Canyon Technologies, located in Boulder, Colorado, requires delivery of a massive number of satellite buses by June 2021.
SA Photonics, of Los Gatos, California, obtained a contract to make optical communications terminals to be sent by March 2021. DARPA will set up a pair of satellites that will carry optical inter-satellite links for broadband info. The bureau said that this technology may form the cornerstone of networks .