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L3Harris Technologies has launched the latest in a demonstration series of end-to-end small satellites being developed as part of a US Air Force constellation, the company announced on 6 July.

As the prime contractor for the firm fixed-price development space mission, L3Harris is designing, developing, building, testing and deploying the satellites. The company will task, command and control the satellite system, as well as perform on-board processing of data to deliver imagery products directly to users on tactical timelines.

L3Harris has developed and supported various aspects of satellite missions over the last several decades as a component supplier or hosted payload,” explained Ed Zoiss, President, Space and Airborne Systems, L3Harris. “In collaboration with the US Air Force, we pulled the pieces together to successfully plan, develop and execute an affordable, high-performance space mission, which is part of a responsive constellation contract.”

The Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicles Secondary Payload Adapter, or ESPA-class, satellite system will use L3Harris’ fully reprogrammable payload platform — allowing operators to reconfigure smallsat payloads in orbit for changing missions. The company’s X-band high compaction ratio unfurlable reflector is also on board to enable high-speed data communication. L3Harris is an end-to-end solutions provider for affordable, responsive smallsat systems that deliver high value for the most challenging DoD and intelligence community missions.

The ESPA-class smallsats carry L3Harris’ unfurlable X-band reflector. (Image: L3Harris Technologies)

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