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Boeing WGS Satellite Program Wins National Space Club Award


El SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Boeing [NYSE: BA] has won the National Space Club’s 2010 Nelson P. Jackson Award for fielding the first three Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft, the highest-capacity military communications satellites in the U.S. Department of Defense arsenal. Boeing representatives accepted the honor March 12 at the 53rd annual Goddard Memorial Dinner in Washington, D.C.

The National Space Club is a nonprofit organization that fosters excellence in space activities by promoting interaction between industry and government. The Nelson P. Jackson Award, named after the club’s founder, is presented for outstanding contributions in the fields of space, missiles or aircraft.

Each WGS satellite has more than 10 times the capacity of a Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) III satellite, the system WGS will eventually replace. WGS-1 was launched in 2007; WGS-2 and WGS-3 were launched in 2009. The three spacecraft are exceeding all customer payload requirements as they provide high-performance broadband communications to U.S. warfighters and their allies in the major theaters of operation around the world.

“Under the WGS contract, Boeing has delivered three satellites to the Air Force that are already providing critical service to the warfighter,” said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "With a total of six satellites under contract, Boeing is meeting and exceeding all financial and schedule commitments on the WGS program, so it’s gratifying to see the program achieve this industry honor.

“Because of the capabilities provided by WGS, the Department of Defense has seen a fivefold increase in satellite communications bandwidth worldwide. We’re working closely with our Air Force teammates to continue improving the system and help warfighters execute missions with greater safety and effectiveness.”

WGS satellites provide significantly greater throughput and flexibility over legacy and commercial systems, and include reconfigurable antenna spot beams that can bring broadband communications to remote regions. WGS-4, WGS-5 and WGS-6, planned for launch in calendar years 2011 and 2012, will include a radio frequency bypass enhancement that supports airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions requiring higher data rates. The Air Force recently requested a proposal from Boeing for options for six additional WGS satellites.

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is one of the world’s largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world’s largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $34 billion business with 68,000 employees worldwide.


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