Boeing Defense, Space & Security2009-06-16 08:13:45

Boeing Completes On-Orbit Handover of 2nd Wideband Global SATCOM Satellite to US Air Force

Boeing on June 15 successfully transferred control of the second Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite to the U.S. Air Force, which will monitor and control the new satellite from Schriever Air Force Base, Colo.

WGS-2 was declared ready for Department of Defense operational testing after rigorous ground testing, an April 3 launch and a thorough on-orbit checkout. WGS satellites are the Defense Department's highest-capacity communications satellite, offering a major increase in bandwidth for airmen, soldiers, sailors and Marines.

"The Air Force could not be more pleased with the performance of the WGS government-industry team and, of course, the performance of this important satellite," said Brig. Gen. Samuel Greaves, commander of the Military Satellite Communications (MILSATCOM) Systems Wing at the Air Force's Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles. "We have high expectations in the MILSATCOM Systems Wing, and this team has once again proven that it is fully capable of meeting that challenge."

The WGS system will augment and eventually replace the Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) constellation. WGS-1, which Boeing delivered to the Air Force in January 2008, and WGS-2 together are capable of handling more than 25 times the capacity of the entire DSCS constellation. The Defense Department has ordered six WGS satellites from Boeing and is making plans to buy more satellites to address growing SATCOM bandwidth needs worldwide.

"The WGS-2 handover is another important step in our overall mission to supply a system that will provide a quantum leap in wideband satellite communications worldwide," said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "Boeing is proud to have delivered another WGS satellite that is meeting and, in many cases, exceeding all requirements for our Air Force customer."

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world's largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $32 billion business with 70,000 employees worldwide.

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