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Space Systems Command Approves L3Harris Design Plans for Digital Sensor Payload

The U.S. Space Force's Space Systems Command (SSC) is working quickly to field advanced technologies that detect and track missile launches and hypersonic glide vehicles – and L3Harris recently helped the agency get one step closer to its goal.

L3Harris has completed Preliminary Design Review (PDR) for the infrared sensor payload for SSC's Missile Track Custody (MTC) Epoch satellite constellation, expected to begin launching in late 2026. The PDR is a critical milestone that defines the sensor's design baseline for SSC and keeps the program on track for Critical Design Review in 2024.

The $29 million contract, announced in June 2023, is focused on rapid delivery of Overhead Persistent Infrared sensing technology into an entirely new satellite constellation in medium Earth orbit. SSC plans to deliver satellites every three years in "Epochs," incrementally building out capabilities over time.

"L3Harris technology is an integral part of the Space Force Space Systems Command's Missile Track Custody program, which will provide groundbreaking missile warning and tracking capabilities that are at the forefront of our national defense," said Ed Zoiss, President, Space and Airborne Systems, L3Harris. "We are committed to leveraging our extensive work within our nation's integrated missile defense architecture to provide resilient, low-risk and affordable solutions for both Epoch 1 and future Epochs."

Learn more about L3Harris' space-based missile warning and defense capabilities.