logo_reaching-critical-will
   

Share

The aerospace industry


In 2007 Reaching Critical Will examined the aerospace industry's contributions to missile defence and the weaponization of space. We found that there are dozens of corporations involved in the development of space weapon and missile defence technology and support systems. 35 of those corporations are represented in this report. RCW has also compiled a list of space weapon technologies and programmes.

Contact person: Ray Acheson

Partner organization: Secure World Foundation

AeroAstro

Though it was founded only in 1988 and employs about 60 people, AeroAstro manages to contribute significantly to the weaponization of space. It specializes in the development of microsatellites and nanospacecraft. One of AeroAstro’s current projects is the Air Force-funded Escort program. Escort satellites carry sensors and lightweight missiles to defend distant satellites against an anti-satellite (ASAT) attack. They can permanently or temporarily disable large satellites that appear threatening. Of course, the technology used to defend against an ASAT attack is the same technology necessary to conduct an ASAT attack, illustrating the fine line between defensive and offensive ASAT systems.

Programs and Products:
- Escort program
- Microsatellites

Headquarters: Ashburn, VA
Website: http://www.aeroastro.com/

Aerojet

Aerojet is a major space and defense contractor specializing in missile and space propulsion and precisicion tactical weapon systems. It works on ramjet and scramjet propulsion for missiles, and is developing combined cycle propulsion for hypersonic cruise and space access applications. Founded in 1942, Aerojet's first product—Jet Assist Take Off rocket motors—provide launch power for US military planes during World War II. During the 1950s and 1960s, Aerojet built the world's largest site for rocket engine development, testing, and production at a facility near Sacramento, California. This site is now Aerojet's headquarters, and is a site of missile and space propulsion operations. In the 1970s and 1980s, Aerojet worked primarily in the field of space electronics, including satellite sensors for weather forecasting and missile detection. It also developed specialized warheads, air-dispensed munitions systems,medium-caliber ammunition, and "smart" weapons for use against tanks and other armored vehicles. In 2001, Aerojet bought General Dynamics' Space Systems and Atlantic Research Corporation, adding to weight to their already heavy hand in the aerospace industry. Today, Aerojet "is well-positioned to benefit from the increased focus on and funding of defense and space programs."

Programs and Products:
- Common Aero Vehicle/Hypersonic Technology Vehicle
- Defense Support Program
- Force Appication and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Hypersonic Demonstrator Aircraft
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Multiple Kill Vehicle Payload System
- Standard Missile-3
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense

Headquarters: Sacramento, CA
Website: http://www.aerojet.com/

Aerospace Corporation

Founded in 1960, Aerospace Corporation is a federally-funded research and development center that supports military and commercial space programs. It was created by the US Air Force Ballistic Missile Division to “serve the Air Force in the scientific and technical planning and management of its missile space programs.” In the 1960s to the 1990s, Aerospace supported programs such as the Advanced Ballistic Rentry System, the Defense Satellite Communications Systems, the Defense Support Program, and anti-satellite technology tests. Today, it provides support to the Defense Support Program, the Space Based Infrared System program, the Space Based Surveillance System, the Space Tracking and Surveillance System, and the Airborne Laser program. Aerospace Corporation also evaluates technical and financial implications of emerging military and commercial space launch systems, including the Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON) program, which is working on the Common Aero Vehicle - now the Hypersonic Technology Vehicle. (See Schafer Corporation for more information on the Hypersonic Technology Vehicle.) Aerospace Corporation has also provided development support for the Operationally Responsive Spacelift, which will allow the US Air Force to rapidly put payload-bearing spacecraft into orbit and maneuver the spacecraft to any point in space.

Programs and Products:
- Airborne Laser
- Common Aero Vehicle/Hypersonic Technology Vehicle
- Defense Support Program
- Force Appication and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Operationally Responsive Spacelift
- Space Based Infrared System
- Spaced Based Surveillance System
- Space Tracking and Surveillance System

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $2,494,160,391
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $11,988 (Democrat), $26,995 (Republican)
Headquarters: El Segundo, CA
Website: http://www.aero.org/

Alliant Techsystems (ATK)

ATK’s Scramjet propulsion technology, already used by NASA, is now used in Department of Defense projects such as the Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle. This aircraft is a reusable unmanned vehicle that can travel at hypersonic speeds. It is an integral part of the Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON) program’s goal “to provide Prompt Global Strike capability to any location in the world in under two hours.” ATK also provides rocket motors for space launch vehicles, stategic missiles, global strike missiles, satellites, and missile defense interceptors. In 2006, ATK received a $90 million contract to provide rocket motors to the Ground-based Missile Defense program. ATK was also selected to support a study of the Kinetic Energy Interceptor project for the US Missile Defense Agency. The US Navy gave Lockheed Martin and ATK $9.2 million to develop a rocket launcher suitable for the Submarine-Launched Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile System. Lockheed Martin and ATK demonstrated their launcher for the US Navy in January 2007.

Programs and Products:
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System
- Kinetic Energy Interceptors
- Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle
- Hypersonic Demonstrator Aircraft
- Standard Missile-3
- Submarine-Launched Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile System

CEO: Dan Murphy
Total 2006 Sales: $3.1 billion
Campaign Contributions 2002-2006: $175,360
Headquarters: Edina, MN
Website: http://www.atk.com/

Analytical Graphics, Inc.

Analytical Graphics, Inc. provides software to national security and space professionals for integrated analysis of land, sea, air, and space assets. Its products support applications in battlespace management, geospatial intelligence, space systems, and national defense programs, and its software is used in projects such as the Airborne Laser, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System, Space Tracking and Surveillance System, and Kinetic Energy Interceptor. The Satellite Tool Kit developed by Analytical Graphics is a program for simulation and visualization of space and missile operations.

Programs and Products:
- Airborne Laser
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Space Tracking and Surveillance System
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense

Headquarters: Exton, PA
Website: http://www.stk.com/

Andrews Space

Founded in 1999, Andrews Space provides space systems technology for the Department of Defense and NASA. It has worked on projects such as the Operationally Responsive Spacelift, and the Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle, Common Aero Vehicle, and Small Launch Vehicle for the FALCON weapons system.

Programs and Products:
- Common Aero Vehicle/Hypersonic Technology Vehicle
- Hypersonic Cruise Vehicle
- Operationally Responsive Spacelift
- Small Launch Vehicle

Headquarters: Seattle, WA
Website: http://www.andrews-space.com/

Ball Aerospace

Ball Aerospace is owned by Ball Corporation, a metal and plastic packaging supplier. Ball Aerospace was formed in 1956 by a group of scientists from the University of Colorado to build controls for miltary rockets. It was later given a contract to build one of NASA’s first spacecraft, the Orbiting Solar Observatory. Ball now provides imaging, communications, and information technologies to the aerospace defense industry. It is part of Boeing’s Orbital Express team, which intends to demonstrate autonomous techniques for on-orbit refueling, reconfiguration, and repair of satellites. Ball provided Northrop Grumman’s Tactical High Energy Laser team with beam alignment and stabilization assembly. This team has demonstrated that directed energy weapons can successfully track and destroy multiple missies in flight. Ball is also working on Northrop Grumman’s Kinetic Energy Interceptor project and Space Based Surveillance System. It nearly doubled its sales in the last five years, to $672.3 million in sales in 2006, and employs about 3000 people.

Programs and Products:
- Boeing Orbital Express System
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser
- Space Based Surveillance System

Headquarters: Boulder, CO
Website: http://www.ballaerospace.com/

Bechtel Corporation

Bechtel is heavily involved in constructing ballistic missile defense system command and control centers, and maintaining support structures at these bases. In Fort Greeley, Alaska, Bechtel has completed construction of the initial phase of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, which is the heart of the US missile defense system. Bechtel also manages the operation of a missile defense test range at Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands, under the charge of the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command. The work conducted there plays a central role in the development of the next generation of US long-range missiles and nuclear delivery systems. Both ballistic missiles and ballistic missile interceptors are tested here: missiles are launched from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California 7000 kilometers from the Marshall Islands, while interceptors are launched from the Kwajalein site.

Bechtel is also one of three corporations that joined with the University of California in 2006 to manage and operate the Los Alamos National Laboratory, under a contract worth up to $79.7 million per year. The Laboratory’s Center for Space Science and Exploration is currently developing nuclear power and propulsion systems for outer space exploration. It also builds small satellites and satellite instruments that are used for space surveillance of threats to the US’ space assets.

Programs and Products:
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- Kwajalein Atoll test site
- Los Alamos National Laboratory
- Microsatellites

CEO: Riley Bechtel
Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $4,407,883,109
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $716,651 (Democrat), $921,265 (Republican)
Headquarters: San Francisco, CA
Website: http://www.bechtel.com/

Boeing

As a member of the US Air Force’s Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Prime Integration team, Boeing will provide engineering, flight controls, ground subsystems, and weapons systems testing for the US Intercontinental Ballistic Missile fleet until 2012. Boeing is the prime contractor for the Pentagon’s largest missile defense effort, the Ground-based Midcourse system. Boeing is currently developing, testing, and integrating all components for the system. Raytheon and Boeing were contracted by the US Missile Defense Agency to build the Standard Missile-3 for the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System. Boeing is also one of Lockheed Martin’s subcontractors for the production of Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missiles. Boeing built the propulsion system, which provides the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System interceptor with the ability to maneuver as it closes in on its targets.

Boeing built the Experimental Spacecraft System-10 (XSS-10), the first in a series of XSS mirosatellites. The Boeing Orbital Express System is another project aimed at developing a fully autonomous (unmanned) satellite. The contract, given to Boeing by the US Defense Advanced Research Project’s Agency, is worth over $100 million.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System
- Airborne Laser
- Arrow Interceptor
- Boeing Orbital Express System
- Experimental Spacecraft System-10 (XSS-10)
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missiles
- Sea-based Midcourse Defense system
- Space Based Surveillance System
- Standard Missile-3
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System

CEO: W. James McNerney, Jr.
Defense Contracts 2005: $18.3 billion
Campaign Contributions, 1990-2006: $4,661,907 (Democrat), $5,977,472 (Republican)
Headquarters: Chicago, IL
Website: http://www.boeing.com

Booz Allen Hamilton

Booz Allen is a global consulting firm with more than 18,000 employees on six continents. It is currently conducting a study for the US government on its space industrial base to determine the industry’s capabilities and viability over the next 15 years. Booz Allen also receives contracts for specific missile defense and space weapon projects. For example, it provides performance analysis and systems engineering and integration for Northrop Grumman’s Kinetic Energy Interceptor project, and support on the Missile Defense Agency’s project to test the national missiles defense system.

Programs and Products:
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $3,031,707,940
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $43,020 (Democrat), $162,650 (Republican)
Headquarters: McLean, VA
Website: http://www.boozallen.com/

British Aerospace Electronics (BAE)

In 2001, BAE and formed a joint venture in missile systems, called MBDA, with other European aerospace corporations. MBDA is a €2.5 billion missile manufacturer, challenging Raytheon and Lockheed Martin for dominance of the European defense market. MBDA is the prime contractor or principal partner in developing major European missile systems, and also provides technical and engineering support to missile systems.

Outside of MBDA, BAE’s space weapon and missile defence technology includes tactical surveillance, infrared, and space electronics. In July 2002, BAE and Boeing signed a missile defense memorandum of understanding, agreeing to collaborate on missile defense contracts. This move gave MBDA more access to the US market. Similar agreements with Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin followed during the summer of 2003. While Lockheed Martin and BAE were already working together on the US Missile Defense System, their agreement allowed them both to expand internationally.

In 2004, the Department of Homeland Security gave Northrop Grumman and BAE $45 million each to adapt military defense systems to civilian airliners. As part of Homeland Security’s Counter-Man Portable Air Defense Systems (Counter-MANPADS), the Northrop Grumman and BAE systems are designed to detect a missile launch from a MANPAD and then direct a laser to the head of the missile and disrupt (jam) its guidance signals.

Programs and Products:
- Common Missile Warning System
- Counter-Man Portable Air Defense Systems
- Vertical Launching System

Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $4.8 billion
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $468,608 (Democrat), $732,810 (Republican)
Headquarters: Farnborough, UK
Website: http://www.baesystems.com/

Carlyle Group

Carlyle Group is a private investment firm that “invests in the opporunities created in industries strongly affected by changes in government policies.” It has tred controversial waters since its inception, employing high-profile people with political connections. The Bush family in particular has strong connections to the firm. It has been noted that George W. Bush will be able to benefit financially from his own administration’s decisions, through his father’s investments. Carlyle is the leading private equity investor in the aerospace and defense industries, completing 23 transaction representing a combined purchase total of more than $7.4 billion.

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $9,334,962,462
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $507,821 (Democrat), $1,132,124 (Republican)
Headquarters: Washington, DC
Website: http://www.carlyle.com/eng/index.html

Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC)

CSC is a major Department of Defense contractor for missile defense engineering, software development, and systems integration, and has held contracts with the Missile Defense Agency since 1988. Under a $250 million contract, CSC engineered the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Weapon System software in 2005. The software guides interceptors to incoming ballistic missiles. Currently, Aegis Weapon Systems software is on 68 US Navy cruisers and destroyers stationed around the world, and there are plans to install the system on an additional 18 destroyers. CSC was also contracted to provide scientific, engineering, and technical support to the Ground-based Midcourse Defense program.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $6,789,832,719
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $91,540 (Democrat), $243,900 (Republican)
Headquarters: El Segundo, CA
Website: http://www.csc.com/

Davidson Technologies Inc.

Founded in 1996, Davidson Technologies provides management, technical, and engineering services to the government and to missile defense prime contractors such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Raytheon. The President of Davidson Technologies, Dr. Julian Davidson, was the first Director of the Advanced Ballistic Missile Defense Agency responsible for all US ballistic missile defense advanced technology development. After leaving the government, he held management positions with Science Applications International Corporation and Booz Allen Hamilton. He was also a chairman of the Technology Assessment Committee of the US Space Command.

Programs and Products:
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Medium Extended Air Defense System
- Miniature Kill Vehicle
- Patriot Advanced Capability-3 Missile
- Space Based Infrared System
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System

Headquarters: Huntsville, AL
Website: http://www.davidson-tech.com/

General Dynamics

General Dynamics entered the space weapons industry when it acquired Spectrum Astro in March 2004. Spectrum Astro was heavily involved in both missile defense and space weapons-related work, primarily through satellite manufacturing. With the acquisition, General Dynamics inherited several aerospace contracts, including the $34.4 million Missile Defense Agency contract for Astro’s work on the Near Field Infrared Experiment (NFIRE). General Dynamics is also a major contractor for the Space Tracking and Surveillance System. It is responsible for building the system’s satellites along with Northrop Grumman. In December 2006, General Dynamics was given a $23.3 million contract by the US Air Force to research and develop the Alternative Infrared Satellite System program, which is being designed as an alternative to the Space Based Infrared program.

Spectrum Astro is not the only small company General Dynamics has benefited from. The US Navy granted Granted Dynamics a 12-month contract worth $41.8 million to provide engineering and technical support to the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Program. This contract was originally awarded to Anteon International Corporation, an IT firm that General Dynamics bought in December 2005. As CorpWatch points out, in the past several years defense contractors “have been swallowing up small technology firms in order to uprade to the type of high-tech warfare that the [former] Defense Sectretary Donald Rumsfeld is pushing in the Pentagon. General Dynamics got on the ball early, setting up an Information Technology sector in the late 1990s, which has now become one of General Dynamics’ fastest growing divisions with revenues of $4 billion.”

Programs and Products:
- Near Field Infrared Experiment (NFIRE)
- Space Tracking and Surveillance System
- Alternative Infrared Satellite System
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Program

CEO: Nicholas D. Chabraja
Defense Contracts 2005: $10.6 billion
Campaign Contributions, 1990-2006: $3,989,932 (Democrat), $5,112,560 (Republican)
Headquarters: Falls Church, VA
Website: http://www.generaldynamics.com

Honeywell

Honeywell Space Systems designs, developes, and produces control systems and subsystems for satellites, launch vehicles, missile defense, and strategic missiles. As a component supplier for various defense projects, Honeywell’s products include navigation systems for satellites, electronics, satellite launchers, and missile defense boosters. It has participated in many Boeing and Orbital Sciences missile defense projects, and hopes to extend into the Japanese missile defense industry. With over $1 billion in space- and missile defense-related sales per year, Honeywell is the largest non-prime contractor in the aerospace industry.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense
- Airborne Laser
- Boeing Orbital Express System
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System
- Space-Based Infrared System
- Standard Missile-3

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $6,135,622,361
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $348,577 (Democrat), $809,134 (Republican)
Headquarters: Phoenix, AZ
Website: http://www.honeywell.com/

IBM

IBM’s software, program languages, and computers are used by the government and major defense contractors to operate satellites and other aerospace technology. In August 2002, IBM supplied the Department of Defense with computer servers to be used in the Ground-based Missile Defense program. In 2004, Boeing and IBM announced a strategic alliance to develop digital communications and information technologies for ground- and space-based missile defense systems. Raytheon and IBM have created a joint office to pursue aerospace defense contracts, advertising Raytheon’s defense electronics and IBM’s chip design and network implementation to attract customers.

In addition, some of IBM’s commercial products have military space applications. For example, APL2, a programming language with a variety of functions that are intended to be used for data processing, system design, engineering, and scientific computing, has been used by Northrop Grumman teams working on missile defense contracts. Northrop Grumman used APL2 in its Kinetic Energy Interceptor program for predicting the path of a target missile so an interceptor missile could hit it.

Programs and Products:
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor

CEO: Samuel J. Palmisano
Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $1.2 billion
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $327,100 (Democrat), $280,621 (Republican)
Headquarters: Armonk, NY
Website: http://www.ibm.com/

L-3 Communications

L-3 is a prime contractor in command, control, and communications, and surveillance and reconnaissance for many industries, including missile defense. It provides sensor and instrumentation design, system integration, and aircraft modification to the US ballistic missile defense system. In 2001, L-3 purchased Coleman Research, which specializes in making targets that are used to simulate incoming warheads in missile defense tests. In 2005, L-3 absorbed Titan Corporation, which is an IT firm that, among other things, produces targeting systems for missile defense. This acquition made L-3 the sixth largest defense contractor in the US.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System
- Standard Missile-3
- Vertical Launching System

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $5,233,392,435
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $155,850 (Democrat). $185,710 (Republican)
Headquarters: New York, NY
Website: http://www.l-3.com; http://www.titan.com/

Lockheed Martin

Many of Lockheed Martin’s recent contracts have led to the development of technology that will be necessary for the future deployment of interceptors (such as missiles) and other space weapons, such as miniature electronics and propulsion systems. For example, Lockheed Martin is under contract to the US Army Air and Missile Defense Program Executive Office for the production of Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missile. The PAC-3 missile system will work in concert with Lockheed Martin’s Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System. The PAC-3 will also be incorporated into Lockheed Martin’s Medium Extended Air Defense System.

Lockheed Martin has also developed a thruster (launch device) for kill vehicles (objects which are used to smash into enemy objects in space). It is designed for the US Missile Defense Agency’s Multiple Kill Vehicle Payload System (for which Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor). The type of propulsion developed for the Multiple Kill Vehicle Payload System is similar to that which is required for a small satellite to manuever close to an incoming missile for surveillance purposes. Lockheed Martin applied this technology to the development of the Experimental Spacecraft System-11 (XSS-11). In 2001, Lockheed Martin was granted a $21 million contract to design, build, and fly the XSS-11.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Program
- Airborne Laser
- Exerimental Spacecraft System-11 (XSS-11)
- Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missile
- Payload Launch Vehicle
- Medium Extended Air Defense System
- Multiple Kill Vehicle
- Sea-based Midcourse Defense System
- Small Launch Vehicle
- Submarine Launched Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile Booster System
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense
- Vertical Launching System

CEO: Robert Stevens
Defense Contracts 2005: $19.4 billion
Campaign Contributions 1990-2006:
$5,833,178 (Democrat), $8,474,517 (Republican)
Headquarters: Bethesda, MD
Website: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/

Microcosm, Inc.

Established in 1984, Microcosm is a space systems engineering firm that specializes in reducing space mission costs. Microcosm developed the Scorpius family of liquid-fueled small rockets for the Pentagon under a $25 million per year contract. Microcosm’s Sprite Mini-Lift vehicle, part of the Scorpius family, is designed to be launched on eight hours’ notice. US Air Force Brig. Gen. Simon “Pete” Worden, who is in charge of briefing the Pentagon on this initiative, has said that small communication and reconnaissance satellites, and weapons for striking in space or on the ground, are among the possible payloads for quick reaction launchers such as Sprite. It is contracted to develop a Small Launch Vehicle for the FALCON program.

Programs and Products:
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Small Launch Vehicle

Headquarters: El Segundo, CA
Website: http://www.smad.com/ns/nsframessr3.html

MicroSat Systems, Inc.

Founded in 2001, MicroSat is a small business that designs, builds, integrates, tests, and operates satellites. It also builds spacecraft subsystems, such as data storage and solar arrays. MicroSat's primary focus is on small satellite systems that enable multiple satellites to be launched as secondary payloads on larger launch vehicles, or single satellites on smaller space launch vehicles, for one quarter to one tenth the cost of launching conventional satellites.

Programs and Products:
- Microsatellites

Headquarters: Littleton, CO
Website: http://www.microsatsystems.com/

Miltec Corporation

Miltec specializes in the design, development, integration, and testing of missiles and aerospace technologies. Miltecs’ Kinetic Warhead Evaluation is computer code that predicts damage to a ballistic missile payload from interaction with a Kinetic Energy Weapon. Miltec also provides a variety of optics and electronics analysis, design, integration, and test capabilities for infrared systems and lasers, supporting various segments of the US missile defense system.

Programs and Products:
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System

Headquarters: Huntsville, AL
Website: http://www.miltecmissiles.com/

Mitsubishi

Mitsubishi is at the forefront of Japan’s contributions to weaponizing outer space. In the 1980s, a major aspect of Japan’s space industry was the development of launch vehicles. The H-1 was Mitsubishi’s first rocket launcher, but it included US technology and was thus was restricted from competing for international launch contracts. By 2006, Japan’s rocket technology was completely domestic. Due to its increased fuel capacity, the H-IIB is able to launch two satellites simultaneously, making it commercially competitive on the American and Europeon markets.

In late 1998 Japan publicly announced its plans to develop and deploy a military/intelligence satellite reconnaissance system. In 2005, nearly one-third of Japan’s space spending went to developing military reconnaissance and war fighting satellites manufactured by Mitshubishi. Third, and fourth generation spy satellites are planned for launch in 2009 and 2011.

Japan has been keen to develop a ballistic missile defense system since 1998, when North Korea “lobbed a suspected long-range missile over its main island and into the Pacific.” In December 2005, the Japanese government officially approved plans to develop the joint ballistic missile defense system with the US. It is estimated to cost Japan $30-$50 billion total for their share of system; in 2006 the Japense government put $26 million towards the project. The US and Japan are aiming for the deployment of a joint missile defense shiled by 2010, “combining the land-based Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) and the sea-based Standard Missile-3 systems.” The Standard Missile-3 is jointly developed by Raytheon and Mitsubishi, while Mitsubishi is the primary manufacturer in Japan of the PAC-3 missile. Mitsubishi has also developed a surface-to-ship missile, air-to-ship missile, and air-to-air missile, and built a Vertical Launching System for anti-air and anti-submarine missiles.

Programs and Products:
- missiles and missile launchers
- Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile
- Standard Missile-3
- spy satellites
- US-Japanese joint missile defense shield
- Vertical Launching System

Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan
Website: http://www.mitsubishi.com/

Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman’s missile defense contracts increased fivefold from $104 million in 2001 to $534 in 2004, largely due to its acquisition of TRW, a major missile defense and space contractor. Now one of the top four missile defense contractors, Northrop Grumman is a major player in the emerging space weapons industry.

In June 2003, Northrop Grumman became the prime contractor on the eight-year, $4.5 billion Kinetic Energy Interceptor project for the US Missile Defense Agency. Northrop Grumman’s work on the Space Based Laser Integrated Flight Experiment, cancelled in 2002, could also be applied to the design of satellites capable of destroying objects in space by crashing into them.

Northrop Grumman has supplied the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD)’s missile attack warning system with satellites and sensors since 1970. Now, Northrop Grumman is developing a sensor for the Missile Defense Agency’s Space Tracking and Surveillance System. The sensor will detect possible hostile satellites, and relay data to missile interceptors. The 2002 contract is worth $868.7 million. As prime contractor, Northrop Grumman is responsible not just for the senor but also for two satellites and engineering support. Northrop Grumman has also developed sensors for the missile-tracking Space-Based Infrared System. Northrop Grumman is responsible for the program’s design, and integration with the Ballistic Missile Defense system. Northrop is also in charge of the Space Based Surveillance System.

Along with Boeing and Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman is a member of the Airborne Laser team selected by the US Air Force. Northrop Grumman’s task is to design and develop the system’s Chemical Oxygen Iodine Laser and the Beacon Illuminator Laser. Northrop Grumman was also the primary contractor for Mobile Tactical High Energy Lasers, which are intended to intercept rockets, missiles, and other aerial threats. It is the first “reusable interception element,” as opposed to non-reusable kinetic energy kill vehicles, which are destroyed when they smash into their targets. Funding for this program was cut in 2004; its future remains unknown.

Northrop Grumman also plays an engineering and analysis role in some of the US military’s biggest missile defense projects. Its contribution to the Ground-based Midcourse Defense is the Fire Control/Communications System, which guides the interceptors to their targets. Meanwhile, for the Missile Defense Agency’s Joint National Integration Center, Northrop Grumman handles modeling and simulation for testing components of the US missile defense system.

Programs and Products:
- Airborne Laser
- Boeing Orbital Express System
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense
- Joint National Integration Center
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Mobile Tactical High Energy Lasers
- Space Based Laser Integrated Flight Experiment
- Space Based Infrared System
- Space Based Surveillance System
- Space Tracking and Surveillance System

CEO: Ronald D. Sugar
Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $33.8 billion
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $1,253,025 (Democrat), $2,455,975 (Republican)
Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA
Website: http://www.northropgrumman.com/

Octant Technologies

Since 1997, Octant has provided engineering services to aerospace companies and the US government on all aspects of control systems design, simulation, and implementation, with an emphasis on spacecraft systems. Octant was responsible for the flight software, mission simulator, and onboard guidance, navigation, and control for both the [Experimental Spacecraft System] XSS-10 and XSS-11 projects.

Programs and Products:
- Experimental Spacecraft System-10 (XSS-10)
- Experimental Spacecraft System-11 (XSS-11)

Headquarters: San Jose, CA
Website: http://www.octanttech.com/

Orbital Sciences Corporation

Orbital was founded in 1982 to “make space technology more affordable, accessible, and useful to millions of people on Earth.” Since then, Orbital has helped develop space technology that endangers civil space assets and makes outer space less accessible to people on Earth. Over the last ten years, Orbital has provided launch vehicles for various US missile defense systems, including the Kinetic Energy Interceptor program, the Experimental Satellite System-11 (XSS-11), and the Space-Based Surveillance System. Orbital also built the Orbital Boost Vehicle, which is used in the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system. It is designed to intercept and destroy long-range enemy missiles while they are in flight. Orbital also designs, builds, and launches target vehicles for programs such as the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile, the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System, the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense Program, and Lightweight Exoatmospheric Projectile Intercept missile defense programs. Target vehicles are “threat simulators” used to test missile defense systems. Orbital also designed, built, and launched the Demonstration of Autonomous Rendezvous Technology space vehicle under a $47 million NASA contract. The technology developed here will allow spacecraft to rendezvous with other spacecraft without human interaction. As with the XSS-11 microsatellite, the capacity that enables spacecraft to maneuver around others to service them can also allow it to destroy them. The debris created by such collisions cluters outer space and inadvertently destroys other space assets. With its range of products, Orbital isn’t really making space affordable to “millions of people” so much as it is capitalizing on the global space market, which exceeds billions of dollars each year.

Programs and Products:
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense
- Demonstration of Autonomous Rendezvous Technology
- Experimental Satellite System-11 (XSS-11)
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Lightweight Exoatmospheric Projectile Intercept
- Orbital Boost Vehicle
- Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile
- Space-Based Surveillance System
- Terminal High Altitude Area Defense Weapon System

Total Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $606,017,074
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $47,500 (Democrat), $313,948 (Republican)
Headquarters: Dulles, VA
Website: http://www.orbital.com/

Rafael Armament Development Authority Ltd.

Rafael is a former subdivision of the Israeli Ministry of Defense and is considered a governmental firm. Rafael’s space systems division develops and manufactures propulsion systems for micro- and minisatellites. Rafael has partnered with Raytheon to develop a missile defense interceptor for the Israel Defense Forces. The design for the kinetic energy interceptor is based on Lockheed Martin’s PAC-3 missile. The partnership allows Raytheon to ensure the interceptor is compatible with the US military’s missile defense systems, thus providing the US with a low-cost air defense option for the future.

Programs and Products:
- Israeli Short Range Missile Defense program
- Microsatellites

Headquarters: Haifa, Israela
Website: http://www.rafael.co.il/

Raytheon

Raytheon has produced a variety of components of the US Ballistic Missile Defense system, including sensors to detect enemy missiles (and satellites), and kill vehicles that can knock them out of orbit One of Raytheon’s sensors, designed for the Missile Defense Agency’s Space Tracking and Surveillance System, detects possible enemy satellites and relays data to missile interceptors. Raytheon also provides sensors for the Sea-Based X-Band radar, the Space-Based Infrared System, and the Upgraded Early Warning Radar, which track targets for the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense system. In 2006 Raytheon received a $114 million contract from the Missile Defense Agency to implement the Upgraded Early Warning Radar program in Thule, Greenland.

Under subcontract to Lockheed Martin, Raytheon provides a radar system for the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense program. Raytheon’s radar component is designed to detect and destroy incoming ballistic missiles. Lockheed Martin also subcontracted Raytheon to develop the Track Illuminator Laser for the US Air Force’s Airborne Laser program.

Raytheon also builds interceptors. Its Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle is designed to destroy ballistic missile targets outside the atmosphere, while the missiles are in flight. In addition, Raytheon is the lead subcontractor to Northrop Grumman on the eight-year, $4.5 billion Kinetic Energy Interceptor project for the US Missile Defense Agency. Raytheon is developing the kill vehicle, while Northrop Grumman is working on systems engineering and integration. Raytheon, along with Alliant Techsystems and Boeing, also designed the Standard Missile-3, an integral component of the Sea-based Missile Defense System.

Programs and Products:
- Airborne Laser
- Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor
- Space-Based Infrared System
- Sea-based Missile Defense System
- Sea-Based X-Band radar
- Space Tracking and Surveillance System
- Standard Missile-3
- Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense
- Track Illuminator Laser
- Upgraded Early Warning Radar
- Vertical Launching System

CEO: William H. Swanson
Defense Contracts 2005: $9.1 billion
Campaign contributions in 2004: $935,000
Headquarters: Waltham, MA
Website: http://www.raytheon.com/

 

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC)

SAIC’s involvement with the aerospace industry ranges from space station and shuttle safety contracts with NASA to engineering and software contracts with private companies and US government agencies on missile defense and space weapon technology. SAIC worked on both the Experimental Spacecraft Satellite-10 and –11 (XSS-10 and XSS-11) microsatellites, developed by Boeing and Lockheed Martin respectively. SAIC is also a systems engineering subcontractor on the Kinetic Energy Interceptor project. In 2004, SAIC was given an $18 million extention on their contract from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to conduct a study into the feasibility of integrating NATO’s various missile defense systems. Not surprisingly, after determining that the integration was possible, SAIC received a $95 million contract to design and operate the integration procedures. Duane P. Andrews, Executive Vice-President of SAIC, was part of Rumsfeld’s commission on national security uses of space. This commission argued the US should avoid international agreements that limit the deployment of weapons in space, and that the US needs to “develop the capability for power projection in, from, and through space.” SAIC’s missile defense contracts more than tripled between 2001 and 2004, from $47 million to $169 million.

Programs and Products:
- Experimental Spacecraft Satellite-10 (XSS-10)
- Experimental Spacecraft Satellite-11 (XSS-11)
- Kinetic Energy Interceptor

Defense Contracts, 1998-2003: $10,598,835,883
Campaign Contributions, 1998-2003: $773,913 (Democrat), $1,339,501 (Republican)
Headquarters: San Diego, CA
Website: http://www.saic.com/

SI International

SI provides information technology and networking solutions to the US military in areas of space and missile defense systems engineering, military satellite communications, command and control systems, and net-centric warfare technology. It’s goal is to design integrated information systems that can “extend US dominance in the exploitation of space.” Customers include the Missile Defense Agency, Air Force Space Command, and NORAD.

Programs and Products:
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense System

Headquarters: Reston, VA
Website: http://www.si-intl.com/

Siemens

Siemens is part of a European team that also includes Lockheed Martin and Raytheon, which was formed to develop the Medium Extended Air Defense System for the US Army. Siemens also designs and develops software systems and subsystems for aerospace and missile defense ground stations and for spacecraft operation. It provides satellite testing services, and develops new technologies for satellite control systems, satellite communication, and spacecraft payloads. Siemens is currently working on the German Defense Ministry’s radar program. In Greece, Siemens joined with Raytheon to manufacture and maintain the Patriot Air and Missile Defense Systems. Siemens was also one of the manufacturers of the Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-2) missile.

Programs and Products:
- Medium Extended Air Defense System
- Patriot Advanced Capability-2 (PAC-2) Missile

CEO: Klaus Kleinfeld
Headquarters: Munich, Germany
Website: http://www.siemens.com/

Space Development Corporation (SpaceDev)

SpaceDev, founded in 1997, designs, manufactures, markets, and operates micro- and nanosatellites, hybrid rocket-based orbital manueuvering and orbital transfer vehicles, and sub-orbital and orbital hybrid rocket-based propulsion systems. SpaceDev has been awarded contracts by NASA, Boeing, the Missile Defense Agency, and the US Air Force.

Programs and Products:
- Microsatellites

Headquarters: Poway, CA
Website: http://www.spacedev.com/

Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX)

SpaceX is developing a family of launch vehicles that will “reduce the cost and increase the reliability of space assets”. Established in 2002 by the founder of PayPal and Zip2 Corporation, SpaceX has already developed two launch vehicles and been awarded a $100 million contract to launch satellites on its Falcon rockets for the US Air Force’s DARPA/FALCON program. It is also contracted to develop a Small Launch Vehicle for FALCON.

Programs and Products:
- Force Application and Launch from Continental United States (FALCON)
- Small Launch Vehicle

Headquarters: El Segundo, CA
Website: http://www.spacex.com/

Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL)

SSTL was formed in 1985 by the University of Surrey to commercialize the results of its small satellite engineering research. It has taken part in 23 small satellite missions, from concept development to in-orbit operations. In 2000, SSTL built SNAP-1, a nanosatellite capable of “inspecting” other satellites in-orbit – in testing, SNAP-1 came within nine meters of another satellite and took pictures. SSTL insists its satellites are for peaceful uses only, “although its collaboration with the Chinese government on the 2000 mission has raised a few eyebrows among US military officials, prompting some to speculate on whether China is secretly developing ‘parasitic satellites’ as space weapons.”

Programs and Products:
- Microsatellites

Headquarters: Guildford, UK (University of Surrey)
Website: http://www.sstl.co.uk/

University of California (UC)

UC co-manages the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Some of the lab's programmes include missile defense and military space technology, focused largely on studies of aerodynamics and radar. The Los Alamos National Laboratory also builds small satellites and satellite instruments. The military applications of this technology include space surveillance of threats to the US’ space assets. In addition, the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Center for Space Science and Exploration is currently developing nuclear power and propulsion systems for outer space exploration.

UC also manages the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for the US Department of Energy. In the 1980s under the Reagan administration’s Star Wars program, the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory worked on a number of space weapon projects, such as particle beams, nuclear-powered x-ray lasers, and Brilliant Pebbles, which were going to be small spacecraft that could stop advanced ballistic missiles by colliding with them at high speeds. The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has also developed sensors for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system that determine whether the interceptors used to take out their targets are successful.

Programs and Products:
- Ground-based Midcourse Defense system
- lasers
- radar
- sensors

President: Robert Dynes
Website: http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/