Washington, USA: Boeing has announced that it has successfully completed a series of Space Based Space Surveillance system tests as part of the development of a new operational sensor for the US Space Surveillance Network.
"Tests of the SBSS system's visible sensor, payload electronics and high speed gimbal further validate that the enhanced capability of SBSS will be twice as fast, substantially more sensitive and 10 times more accurate than the capabilities currently on orbit, resulting in improved detection of threats to America's space assets," Boeing said.
"The visible sensor on the SBSS satellite will be used to provide critical information vital to the protection of US military and civilian satellites," said US Air Force Lt Col Robert Erickson, squadron commander for the SBSS, Space Superiority Systems Wing.
"The end result is that SBSS will significantly enhance the nation's space situational awareness," said US Air Force Col JR Jordan, group commander for the Space Situational Awareness, Space Superiority Systems Wing.
"The recently completed SBSS milestones include recording the first image with a visible light sensor, powering up the spacecraft bus for the first time and the successful thermal vacuum testing of the visible sensor telescope," Boeing said.
"With the successful completion of these tests, we continue to meet the US Air Force's requirements of producing a high-quality space situational awareness system," said Howard Chambers, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems.
Boeing said it had "overall responsibility for the SBSS system and is developing the SBSS ground segment while working with Ball Aerospace to develop the spacecraft and visible sensor. In 2006, Boeing completed a series of critical design reviews that included government and industry participants."