Satellite payloads for DARPA Blackjack program delivered and testedNews
September 08, 2022
LAFAYETTE, Colo. Blue Canyon Technologies (BCT) and SEAKR Engineering (wholly owned subsidiaries of Raytheon Technologies) announced that they have delivered one Saturn-class microsatellite bus and completed acceptance testing of the first two of twelve "Pit Boss" battle-management systems for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Blackjack satellite program.
According to the companies' announcement, BCT is providing a total of ten Saturn-class buses total; the remaining nine buses are expected to ship in late 2022. Each BCT bus includes advanced electric propulsion, a robust power system, command and data handling, radio-frequency communications, and dedicated payload interfaces that could host several different U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) payloads.
The Blackjack mission is intended to develop and demonstrate critical elements of a global high-speed network in low-Earth orbit (LEO) that satisfy DoD performance and payload requirements at a much lower cost, with shorter design cycles, and with easier and more frequent technology upgrades.
Dave Anderson, SEAKR’s Vice President, Advanced Product Development and CTO, says that Pit Boss satisfies many needs for the Blackjack constellation by providing on-orbit mission autonomy, a space platform for DevSecOps Docker applications, network routing of optical satellite links, and high-speed link encryption.