When operational in 2013, GeoEye-2 will deliver the highest resolution and most accurate color imagery to GeoEye’s commercial, government and international customers.
The Exelis-built imaging payload for GeoEye-2 includes a telescope, sensor subsystem and outer barrel assembly and has the potential to capture panchromatic ground sample distance imagery of the Earth’s surface at 0.34-meter, or 13.38-inch, ground resolution.
“Exelis was instrumental in helping Lockheed Martin revolutionize the commercial remote sensing market by designing and manufacturing the imaging system for GeoEye’s IKONOS satellite, launched in 1999. More than a decade later, Exelis is proud to deliver the imaging system for GeoEye’s next-generation satellite,” said Rob Mitrevski, vice president and general manager, Environmental Intelligence and Integrated Geospatial Sensing Systems at Exelis Geospatial Systems. “Exelis has long relationships with Lockheed Martin and GeoEye, and together, we look forward to the next phase of integrating the Exelis-built imaging system into the GeoEye-2 spacecraft.”
GeoEye-2 will have significant improvements in capability compared with current systems, including enhanced tasking; longer focal length, which enables better resolution; advancements to the sensor subsystem, which improves image quality; and the ability to collect more imagery at a faster rate. The GeoEye-2 satellite will provide cost-effective, increased coverage and easier access to high-resolution satellite imagery for intelligence analysts, warfighters, map producers and commercial customers.
Bill Schuster, GeoEye’s chief operating officer, said, “We commend Exelis for completing this next milestone of our GeoEye-2 program with a superbly performing camera and an on-time delivery of the imaging system to Lockheed Martin. Commercial satellite imagery plays a fundamental and essential role in our country’s national security, disaster response and humanitarian efforts. Soldiers depend on it on the battlefield every day for the most up-to-date situational awareness and to meet many of their operational mission requirements. Commercial imagery is unclassified, and as such, is easily shared with coalition forces.”
The GeoEye-2 satellite bus is being assembled at Lockheed Martin in Sunnyvale, Calif. Its propulsion system has been installed and many of the subsystems are completed and being integrated into the spacecraft.
“Delivery of the imaging payload is a major milestone for the team and another critical step forward in our objective to deploy this cutting-edge satellite in a timely fashion,” said Allen Anderson, GeoEye-2 program director for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. “We look forward to integrating the payload with the GeoEye-2 space vehicle and achieving mission success for our customer.”
GeoEye-2 will surpass the performance of the GeoEye-1 satellite, launched in 2008, in resolution, capacity and agility. GeoEye-1 currently is the world’s highest resolution imagery satellite. GeoEye selected Exelis to begin work on the GeoEye-2 imaging system in October 2007.
GeoEye is a leading source of geospatial information and insight for decision makers and analysts who need a clear understanding of our changing world to protect lives, manage risk and optimize resources. Each day, organizations in defense and intelligence, public safety, critical infrastructure, energy and online media rely on GeoEye’s imagery, tools and expertise to support important missions around the globe. Widely recognized as a pioneer in high-resolution satellite imagery, GeoEye has evolved into a complete provider of geospatial intelligence solutions. GeoEye’s ability to collect, process and analyze massive amounts of geospatial data allows our customers to quickly see precise changes on the ground and anticipate where events may occur in the future. GeoEye is a public company listed on NASDAQ as GEOY and is headquartered in Herndon, Va. with more than 700 employees worldwide.
About ITT Exelis
ITT Exelis is a diversified, top-tier global aerospace, defense and information solutions company with strong positions in enduring and emerging global markets. Exelis is a leader in networked communications, sensing and surveillance, electronic warfare, navigation, air traffic solutions and information systems with growing positions in cyber security, composite aerostructures, logistics and technical services. The company has a 50-year legacy of innovation and technology expertise, partnering with customers worldwide to deliver affordable, mission-critical products and services for managing global threats, conflicts and complexities. Headquartered in McLean, Va., the company employs about 20,500 people and generated 2011 sales of $5.8 billion.
(source: ITT Exelis)