SpaceX awarded contract to build US military tracking satellites

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Elon Musk’s SpaceX is one of two companies to be awarded a $149 million contract from the Space Development Agency to develop missile-tracking satellites for the U.S.

SpaceX and defence contractor L3 Harris were chosen to build the satellites as part of the National Defense Space Architecture’s Trache 0, which will include 20 transport layer satellites and 8 tracking satellites.

The companies will build four overhead persistent infrared imaging (OPIR) satellites that must be able to track missiles and communicate directly with transport layer satellites. Those satellites are currently being developed by Lockheed Martin and York Space Systems.

SpaceX will be developing its satellites around an infrared sensor with a wide field of view. 

The satellites should be ready by the end of fiscal 2022.

SpaceX on Tuesday launched 60 new Starlink satellites at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

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