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Raytheon contracted for space-based hypersonic missile tracker

5th January 2023 - 19:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team in London


The MTC ground element can process data from satellites including OPIR space vehicles. (Image: Raytheon)

The Missile Track Custody system will give the US Space Force a medium Earth orbit-based missile tracking capability.

Raytheon Intelligence & Space has been awarded a contract to develop a prototype Missile Track Custody (MTC) system for the US Space Force (USSF), the service’s first medium Earth orbit (MEO) missile tracking capability.

Raytheon will serve as prime contractor for the MTC system, delivering a space vehicle, mission payload and ground-based C2 and data processing. 

The ground segment will use the Raytheon's Future Operationally Resilient Ground Evolution Mission Data Processing Application Framework (FORGE MDPAF). This collects and processes data from satellites, including Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR) space vehicle data from the USSF's Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) constellation and the future Next-Generation OPIR constellation.

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Roger Cole, executive director, strategic systems programmes, at Raytheon Intelligence & Space said: 'From its MEO perch, our system will enable space force to accurately detect and track adversarial hypersonic weapons with precision accuracy.'

The MTC mission payload, which passed critical design review in November, will be integrated on a Lockheed Martin LM400 satellite bus/

The Raytheon/Lockheed Martin team plans to complete a system critical design review this year, followed by a build, integration and test campaign to deliver capability to orbit by 2026.

The Shephard News Team


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