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SUNNYVALE, Calif., Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --The Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) team designing GeoEye's (Nasdaq: GEOY) next-generation, high-resolution imaging satellite, known as GeoEye-2, successfully completed the program's Preliminary Design Review (PDR) three weeks ahead of the planned schedule. The successful PDR completion validated the spacecraft's design maturity, meeting or exceeding all GeoEye standards and program requirements.
During the two-day PDR, representatives from Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company and GeoEye thoroughly reviewed the spacecraft's intricate design and advanced capabilities. With the validation that GeoEye-2 design will meet the critical geospatial information requirements of GeoEye's government and commercial users worldwide, the team is now gearing up for the Critical Design Review scheduled for early 2011, a key milestone that precedes the production phase of the program.
GeoEye-2 will be launched aboard an Atlas V rocket provided by Lockheed Martin Commercial Launch Services and will be operational in early 2013. Once fully operational, GeoEye-2 will be the highest resolution commercial satellite in the world. In addition, it will have significant improvements in performance capabilities, such as enhanced tasking and the ability to collect more imagery at a faster rate.
Bill Schuster, GeoEye's chief operating officer, said, "This is an important milestone for our GeoEye-2 satellite program. We are very pleased Lockheed Martin is committed to meeting our stringent objectives and schedule. Worldwide commercial market demand is increasing, and the U.S. government has growing requirements for large-area coverage at the best resolution commercially available. We look forward to commissioning GeoEye-2, which will meet this increased demand and help sustain GeoEye's strong growth rate when fully operational."
"The steady pace at which we are progressing on GeoEye-2 is fully aligned with the cost, schedule and technical requirements established by our customer," said Allen Anderson, GeoEye-2 program manager for Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. "We understand that achieving mission success on this program is imperative in a global environment that is significantly increasing its demands for geospatial information. We look forward to fielding GeoEye-2 at the earliest possible launch date."
In development under a fixed-price contract with GeoEye to support the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency's EnhancedView commercial imagery program, GeoEye-2 will provide intelligence analysts, war fighters, and decision makers map-accurate images at an increased resolution, with a greater spacecraft response rate and level of performance reliability unmatched by existing spacecraft.
GeoEye-2 is based on the latest generation of the LMx configure-to-order low Earth orbit bus product line initiated with Lockheed Martin-built IKONOS satellite, and it features a new high-resolution ITT camera that has been in development for more than two years.
"ITT and Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company's excellent working relationship has spanned nearly 20 years, beginning with the development of the IKONOS satellite," said Rob Mitrevski, vice president and general manager, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Systems, ITT Geospatial Systems. "The exceptional collaboration between ITT and Lockheed Martin Space Systems helped meet this important program milestone ahead of schedule. ITT looks forward to delivering the advanced camera and camera electronics for GeoEye-2--providing a resolution and accuracy never achieved before in commercial remote sensing."
Space Systems Company designs, develops, tests, manufactures and operates a full spectrum of advanced-technology systems for national security, civil and commercial customers. Chief products include human space flight systems; a full range of remote sensing, navigation, meteorological and communications satellites and instruments; space observatories and interplanetary spacecraft; laser radar; ballistic missiles; missile defense systems; and nanotechnology research and development.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 133,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation's 2009 sales from continuing operations were $44.0 billion.
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Low- and high-resolution JPEG image files of GeoEye-2 are available at: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/products/geoeye2
SOURCE Lockheed Martin