The National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) has announced five contract awards for commercial radar capabilities under the agency’s new Strategic Commercial Enhancements Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) Framework.


The Strategic Commercial Enhancements BAA Framework was designed to reach across disciplines and the commercial sector to drive innovation and ensure that the U.S. government has access to the best available commercial remote sensing capabilities.


“Users across the National System for Geospatial-Intelligence are eager to explore commercial radar, and these contracts will allow us to rapidly validate capabilities and the benefits to the national mission,” Dr. Chris Scolese, NRO director, said in a press release.


The contracts were awarded to Airbus, U.S.; Capella Space; ICEYE, U.S.; PredaSAR; and Umbra. Following the agency’s continued commitment to a more agile acquisition process for commercial capabilities, NRO issued the request for proposal, received and evaluated responses, and awarded these contracts in about three months.


According to Pete Muend, director of NRO’s Commercial Systems Program Office, these latest awards push forward NRO’s mission for a diversified architecture comprised of national and commercial satellites, including large and small constellations, working across multiple orbits.


“By leveraging commercial capabilities to the maximum extent possible, we are delivering increased flexibility and capacity, greater responsiveness, and improved resiliency for our customers,” added Muend in a press release.

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Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.