EADS North America and Infoterra awarded U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency contract to supply radar satellite data for intelligence, military and homeland security users
Arlington, 03 February 2010
EADS North America has received a five-year contract to provide commercial radar satellite data to the U.S. government’s National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) for use in intelligence, military and homeland security applications.
The data will be provided by the geo-information service provider, Infoterra GmbH, an EADS Astrium subsidiary that holds the commercial exploitation rights for the German radar satellite TerraSAR-X.
This Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract has a value of up to $85 million, and involves the supply of imagery from TerraSAR-X, an EADS Astrium-built synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellite, along with related products and direct downlink services. The data will enable the NGA to provide other U.S. government and DoD agencies improved information acquisition capabilities – particularly in bad weather and low light conditions.
“This new contract underscores EADS North America’s ability to support the U.S. warfighter and protect our homeland by applying the company’s vast resources and technologies in meeting demanding customer requirements,” said Sean O’Keefe, chief executive officer of EADS North America.
“EADS North America and Infoterra already have demonstrated their value as a partner to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in providing high quality data on demand,” said Eric Beranger, the chief executive officer of Infoterra's parent company, Astrium Services. “We look forward to building on this excellent relationship during the years ahead, utilizing the capabilities of both TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X.”
The agreement follows an initial 18-month contract in which NGA evaluated data delivered by the commercial TerraSAR-X radar satellite, which has been in orbit since 2007 and fully operational since early 2008.
Andreas Kern, director of business development and sales at Infoterra adds, "results have exceeded expectations and demonstrated superb geo-location accuracy as also illustrated in a paper titled "Geometric Precision in SPACE RADAR IMAGING: Results from TerraSAR-X" which was presented at the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) conference in March 2009.
During the new five-year contract, TerraSAR-X will be complemented with another EADS Astrium-built SAR satellite, TanDEM-X, which is scheduled to be launched in 2010. Together they will create a unique twin-satellite formation that will collect data for a global digital elevation model.
The SAR instruments on TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X enable large-area coverage as well as extremely high resolution and geolocation accuracy – performance that is particularly well suited for reconnaissance and intelligence applications. Data and products supplied under this contract can be used in processing centers of U.S. Department of Defense agencies and the U.S. intelligence community, as well as down linked directly to ground receiving facilities. Satellite images, fused with other intelligence and geospatial information deliver actionable information to national decision makers and warfighters.
NGA, as the Department of Defense’s (DoD) sole procurer of commercial remote sensing (CRS) data, routinely procures commercial imagery from both domestic and foreign sources. NGA and its mission partners utilize commercial SAR data for intelligence, military and homeland security applications.
About EADS North America
EADS North America is the North American operation of EADS, a global leader in aerospace, defense and related services. As a leader in all sectors of defense and homeland security, EADS North America and its parent company, EADS, contribute over $11 billion to the U.S. economy annually and support more than 200,000 American jobs through its network of suppliers and services. Operating in 17 states, EADS North America offers a broad array of advanced solutions to its customers in the commercial, homeland security, aerospace and defense markets.
About Infoterra GmbH
Infoterra GmbH, Germany, provides a broad portfolio of geo-information products and services, based on both radar data and remote sensing data acquired by other spaceborne sensors. Infoterra provides reliable and timely knowledge to customers in versatile fields of application around the globe. The company holds the exclusive commercial exploitation rights for the new German radar satellite TerraSAR-X, enabling the company to provide weather-independent, high-resolution, new-quality radar data as well as reliable data access services. Infoterra GmbH is a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS Astrium, Europe's leading space systems and services specialist and part of Spot Infoterra, the Earth Observation Division of Astrium Services.
The TerraSAR-X Earth observation satellite is a joint venture being carried out under a public-private-partnership between the German Aerospace Center DLR and EADS Astrium GmbH. At DLR, a team of four institutes is responsible for implementing the mission in collaboration with the space agency.
Astrium GmbH developed, built and launched the satellite; the exclusive commercial exploitation rights are held by the geo-information service provider Infoterra GmbH. TerraSAR-X was launched on June 15, 2007 and has been in operational service since January 2008.
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