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Satnews Daily
June 25th, 2018

U.S.A.F. Awards SpaceX with EELV Launch Contract for the AFSPC-52 Classified Satellite

The U.S. Air Force has announced the award of an Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) launch service contract.

Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) has been awarded a $130 million firm-fixed price contract for launch services to deliver U.S. Air Force Space Command (AFSPC)-52 satellite to the intended orbit.  The contract provides the Government with a total launch solution for this mission, which includes launch vehicle production, mission integration and launch operations. This mission is planned to be launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida.

Artistic rendition of an Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) System satellite.

This is the fifth competitive procurement under the current Phase 1A strategy. These launch service contract awards strike a balance between meeting operational needs and lowering launch costs through reintroducing competition for National Security Space missions. AFSPC-52 is a classified mission projected to launch in late Fiscal Year 2020.

Lt. Gen. John F. Thompson, U.S. Air Force program executive officer for Space and SMC, said that the competitive award of this EELV launch service contract directly supports Space and Missile Systems Center’s (SMC) mission of delivering resilient and affordable space capabilities to our Nation while maintaining assured access to space.

The Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at the Los Angeles Air Force Base, California, is the U.S. Air Force's center of excellence for acquiring and developing military space systems.