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Satellite and Payload Processing

A World-Class Processing Facility

L3Harris owns and operates an Integrated Processing Facility (IPF) to help both first-time and veteran space operators get missions into space safely and cost effectively.

Located at Vandenberg Air Force Base since 1995, the IPF has nearly 500,000 cubic feet of clean room space equipped to accommodate most spacecraft or payload processing needs. The facility includes generous administrative workspace for visiting processing teams. Experienced L3Harris personnel are on-site to facilitate all aspects of satellite vehicle final assembly, fueling, checkout and encapsulation.

The IPF’s heavily reinforced concrete and steel construction provides excellent radio frequency (RF) attenuation in all processing areas. A specially designed cell can provide ultra-quiet, 80-100 decibels of RF attenuation from 0-20 gigahertz.

The IPF processing area, including transporter airlock, high bay and three test cells, can achieve ISO 7 (Class 10K) clean room conditions. Each has fully redundant HVAC and filtering systems. Each is isolated so that recovery can be quick, and operations and conditions are contained within that area. This efficiency enables multiple satellites to be processed simultaneously, thereby supporting stringent schedules.

L3Harris also provides state-of-the-art security services to meet customer needs and ensure equipment and high-value items are protected. Our facilities, combined with our team of professionals, enable L3Harris to deliver satellite and payload processing services that meet our customers’ most challenging needs.

L3Harris Satellite and Payload Processing Definitions

About L3Harris Spaceport Systems

L3Harris offers comprehensive customer support based on extensive experience in requirements development, mission processing and execution of launch site satellite preparations. Serving both commercial and government users, L3Harris Spaceport Systems provides commercial satellite and payload processing to cost-conscious customers looking for solutions on California’s central coast. L3Harris has experience in all aspects of launch site processing — from transportation to contamination control, spacecraft fueling to encapsulation and integration. Located at Vandenberg Air Force Base for more than 20 years, L3Harris Spaceport Systems ensures seamless integration with its mission partners, including the Western Range, Vandenberg Air Force Base and others.


  • Since the mid-1990s, L3Harris has processed 24 large satellite missions at the IPF.
  • The IPF was originally designed to process three Space Shuttle-class payloads simultaneously.
  • The IPF has been extensively upgraded and modernized for efficient satellite and payload processing to benefit commercial and government customers.
  • L3Harris’ IPF, with its proximity to several launch facilities, offers cost-effective support for small satellite processing and integration as well as traditional mission needs.

Satellite and Payload Processing Specifications

Size Over 12,500 sq feet for payload assembly, checkout, fueling and encapsulation
Cranes Seven independent clean room cranes from 5- to 75-ton capacity
Cleanliness Certified ISO 7 (Class 10K) cleanrooms
Explosives Sited for 3K TNT equivalent
Security Up to Top Secret with capability for ready escalation to compartmented levels
Fueling Hypergolic fuel compatible

Contact the Space Superiority Team

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