WGS-4 Work Progresses

According to a Feb. 10 release from Boeing, the company in late December passed a key milestone when it successfully integrated the satellite bus and payload module for the fourth of six Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft Boeing is manufacturing. The work, which took place at Boeing’s El Segundo, Calif., satellite development facility, “capped a great year, which included launching two satellites less than eight months apart,” said Craig Cooning, Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems VP and GM. Boeing predicts that WGS-3, launched in December 2009, will enter operational service in April. WGS-4, the first of three Block II spacecraft, is slated to launch in the 2011-12 timeframe along with WGS-5 and WGS-6. The Air Force has requested in its 2011 budget purchase of a seventh WGS satellite.