Military Embedded Systems

Hypersonic ballistic missile detection key capabilities in L3Harris satellites


September 21, 2021

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

L3Harris Technologies image.

MELBOURNE, Fla. L3Harris Technologies announced that the company has accomplished a key milestone in the development of a missile tracking satellite prototype for the Space Development Agency (SDA).  

The completed Preliminary Design Review (PDR) defines the spacecraft’s design baseline for delivery to SDA and allows the program to move to the next stage of delivering ground-breaking new capabilities at speed.

When completed, the company claims that the satellites will aim to provide the capability to detect and track ballistic and hypersonic missiles via overhead persistent infrared sensing from low earth orbit.

L3Harris received the tracking layer prototype award in 2020 to develop and integrate an end-to-end satellite system under a $193 million firm fixed-price contract. Total period of performance runs through 2025 and covers four space vehicle launches.   


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L3Harris Technologies

1025 W. NASA Boulevard
Melbourne, FL 32919