Northrop Grumman recruits Australian SMEs for satellite bid


US prime defence contractor Northrop Grumman has brought together a powerful group including Australian SMEs to bid to construct a military satellite communications system.

The team includes Inmarsat, L3Harris, AECOM, Blacktree Technologies, EM Solutions and Vocus, and will be able to draw on decades of collective experience to invest in and grow an ‘Australian sovereign satellite communications capability’, according to a statement.

Northrop Grumman Asia Pacific general manager Christine Zeitz: “The Northrop Grumman Australia team brings together technologies and capabilities that will significantly increase Australia’s sovereign space capability.

“Building on proven experience, our team is developing an industry leading solution to support critical and complex missions for Australia’s next generation space programmes.”

Northrop Grumman will integrate its high capacity mobility satellites and provide sustainment of the mission system including through the state-of-the-art Parallax Labs facility opened in Australia during 2021.

Linked to Inmarsat Global Express satellites, the Australian Defence Force will gain the capability to assign capacity and coverage immediately as a mission requires.

AECOM’s support will include designing Satellite Ground Stations and Satellite Operations Centres, while L3 Harris will manufacture Wombat terminals locally.

This will create up to 100 additional jobs for supporting small to medium enterprises.

Blacktree Technologies will provide the High Mobility UHF ground segment to the solution offering, with Australian design and manufacturing company EM Solutions to offer certification services to the team.

Vocus, an Australian fibre network, will provide robust communications links.

Picture: The team from Northrop Grumman Australia, Inmarsat, L3Harris, AECOM, Blacktree Technologies, EM Solutions and Vocus

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