Lockheed Martin submitted its proposal May 1 for the Air Force’s self-awareness space situational awareness program, the company announced May 13. “We have offered a solid technological solution and are well-equipped to help the Air Force achieve successfully achieve their SASSA objectives,” said Phil Bowen, director of Surveillance and Intelligence Systems at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. USAF is expected to award a $30 million contract later this year for the development of a technology demonstration payload, the company said. This suite of threat-warning sensors will be designed to provide tactical situational awareness around a host satellite, the Air Force has said. The launch of the demonstration payload is planned for late 2010. Improving the nation’s ability to monitor and understand the nature of natural and man-made activities in space is a top Air Force priority.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.