NASA awards delivery order for multi-satellite SLI spacecraft

NASA has awarded a contract to Orbital Sciences Corporation for delivery of Landsat9, a multi-satellite, multi-decadal sustainable land imaging spacecraft, the administration said.

The contract is a five-year, firm fixed-price delivery order in the amount of USD129.9 million. Orbital will design and fabricate the spacecraft, integrate the mission´s two government-furnished instruments, and conduct satellite-level testing, in-orbit satellite checkout, and mission operations support. The work will be performed at the contractor´s facilities and at the launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

The spacecraft will extend the Landsat program´s record of land images to half a century. Landsat has provided accurate, 98-foot (30-meter) resolution, multi-spectral, global measurements of Earth´s land cover since 1972, building an archive of more than six million satellite images. With data from Landsat satellites, ecologists have tracked deforestation in South America, water managers have monitored irrigation of farmland in the American West, and researchers have watched the growth of cities worldwide.