Advanced Television

Hughes wins US Space Force contract

August 24, 2023

By Chris Forrester

EchoStar-owned Hughes Network Systems has won a 5-year contract from the US Space Force. Valued at up to $500 million it has a potential 5-year extension option. The contract will benefit OneWeb and EchoStar’s Lyra S-band system.

Hughes has a distribution contract in place with OneWeb, itself just days away from merging with Eutelsat.

The contract from the US Space Force (and includes services for the Dept. of Defense (DoD) and other federal agencies) requires Hughes to “procure fully managed, low-latency LEO services from Hughes leveraging capacity on two constellations: OneWeb and EchoStar Lyra.”

EchoStar/Hughes have orders in place to build 28 new Lyra satellites (from Astro Digital) with the first due for launch next year.

“As government and defense agencies explore the power and potential of LEO services in delivering capabilities to the warfighter faster and at lower cost, we’re proud to offer not one, but two compelling solutions,” said Leslie Blaker-Glass, VP at Hughes. “Our OneWeb offering – with our low-power, light-weight, flat panel antenna – and our next-generation EchoStar Lyra S-band IoT system position us to deliver customers in the DoD and federal government robust and resilient low-latency connectivity at a competitive price.”

Hughes previously announced a distribution agreement with OneWeb Technologies Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of OneWeb, to deliver managed, wideband LEO services to the DoD; those services are now available under the IDIQ and the GSA Schedule. Also available under the Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity are narrowband services over the EchoStar Lyra constellation, the system that EchoStar, parent company of Hughes, is developing for Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity and ongoing market development that includes 5G non-terrestrial networks (NTN).

“These important LEO capabilities will give the DoD cost-effective solutions and added reliability and resiliency in satellite communications across all domains and we look forward to addressing upcoming requirements for procurement of these services,” added Rick Lober, VP GM Defense and Government Systems Division at Hughes.

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