Lockheed Martin Chooses Tesat Optical Terminals for SDA Tranche 1 Transport Satellites


Tesat’s optical communications terminals have been chosen by Lockheed Martin for its Space Development Agency (SDA) Tranche 1 Transport Layer satellites, according to an announcement made by Tesat on October 26.

In addition, Tesat has completed ground interoperability tests for the SDA program. These tests involved demonstrating consistent data communication links between Tesat’s optical communications terminals and a reference modem and optical terminal from another supplier. The successful completion of these tests confirms that Tesat’s terminals comply with the technical specifications and standards set by SDA for interoperability with third-party products.

© Tesat

Tesat CEO Thomas Reinartz commented on the significance of this achievement, stating,

“The successful completion of this important test showcases that our OCTs meet the SDA standards and marks a big step for laser communication technology as interoperability is key.”

Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor responsible for building 42 Tranche 1 Transport Layer satellites, which will provide global communications regional encrypted connectivity. Each satellite must be equipped with optical communications terminals that enable a minimum of four simultaneous optical communications links.

Terran Orbital is in charge of building the satellite buses for Lockheed Martin, while MDA is responsible for constructing the antennas and antenna control electronics.

In addition to its involvement with Lockheed Martin, Tesat is offering its optical terminals for commercial constellations. The company has also secured a deal with Kepler Communications for its Aether constellation.