NASA and KBRWyle team on geodesy precision-measuring effortNews
October 16, 2018
HOUSTON. KBRwyle -- the global government services arm of KBR, Inc. -- has won a $48 million indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (ID/IQ) contract with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) to construct, deploy, and commission the next-generation Space Geodesy (SG) Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) ground systems.
KBRwyle's build will help maintain and enhance the geodetic infrastructure that enables modern geodesy -- the science of measuring with the highest precision the earth's geometric shape, gravity, and orientation in space and over time -- and supports NASA's earth-science missions.
The KBRwyle-built systems will be part of the new NASA Space Geodetic Network (NSGN), which are slated to feed high-quality millimeter data to the International Terrestrial Reference Frame (ITRF), a world spatial reference system that is the foundation for virtually all earth observations. The SLR systems' data will push information into this reference frame, enabling scientists to assign coordinates to points and objects and determine how those points and objects move over time. According to a KBRWyle statement, the ITRF is critical to spacecraft tracking and navigation, is the basis for georeferenced data used across the globe, and provides measurements that help scientists better understand the impact of geohazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides, tsunamis, floods, storm surges, and hurricanes.
"We are proud of our role in building the future of NASA space geodesy," said Byron Bright, President, KBR Government Services U.S. "KBRwyle's work on these cutting-edge systems will help NASA survey the world. The systems' data has the potential to profoundly and positively impact science, and, ultimately, humankind."
KBRwyle will perform the bulk of work on the seven-year contract at its office in Lanham, Maryland, with additional efforts at GSFC and other locations around the world.