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Comtech Telecommunications Corp. announced that its Virginia-based subsidiary, Comtech AeroAstro Inc., has been awarded a $37.9 M contract from the United States Navy's Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) to develop and deliver the spacecraft bus for the Joint Milli-Arcsecond Pathfinder Survey (JMAPS) mission by March 2012. This contract is based on a Phase III SBIR award. The NRL contract also has $4.2M in options for post-delivery technical support that could be exercised.
The JMAPS mission is primarily intended to update the star position catalog for critical national security and civil applications. The JMAPS space vehicle uses Comtech AeroAstro's Astro 200AS bus to host the JMAPS instrument over a three-year mission life. Evolved from spacecraft developed for the Department of Defense's Space Test Program, STPSat-1 and STPSat-2, the Astro 200AS provides unparalleled stability and pointing accuracy for a vehicle in its size class.
Commenting on the award, Fred Kornberg, President and Chief Executive Officer of Comtech Telecommunications Corp., stated, "We are excited to participate on the JMAPS mission and this award represents further evidence that our ongoing investments in our microsatellite product line are resulting in leading-edge products and solutions. We continue to solidify our position as a primary provider of innovative mission solutions."
Paul Lithgow, President of Comtech AeroAstro, added, "The capability offered by this spacecraft enables a range of new high-value mission and sensor options on an affordable platform that can be rapidly developed and deployed."