03 Oct 07. Pentagon brass and Australia’s military leaders have signed off on a novel agreement under which Australia will share in the capacity of an expanded Wideband Global satellite communications system, which Boeing Co. is currently building, according to U.S. industry and government officials. The pact, which had been expected, means that the proposed $1.8bn program will be expanded to six satellites, versus the previous five-satellite constellation. The move also boosts efforts by the U.S. Department of Defense to foster international cooperation on some of its big-ticket space programs, and to get foreign governments to underwrite part of the price tag. Boeing previously indicated negotiations with Australia were underway, while the Air Force last month declined to comment. The agreement follows by several weeks a visit by President George Bush to meet with Australian Prime Minister John Howard. The two leaders signed a broad defense-trade agreement to make it easier to share military information and hardware between the two countries. Called WGS, the space communications project is two years behind schedule but the first satellite is slated to be launched as early as next week. News reports from Australia have indicated that the Canberra government has pledged more than $800m to provide assured capacity to the Australian Defense Force. By agreeing to expand the anticipated Wideband Global Satcom system, the Pentagon is following the direction of Congress to focus on building more current-generation satellites before starting full-bore development of next-generation communication satellite networks. (Source: WSJ)
09 Oct 07. Raytheon Company has entered a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement, or CRADA, with the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command-U.S. Army Forces Strategic Command (SMDC-ARSTRAT) to investigate improvements to integrated air and missile defense mission effectiveness. Under the five-year agreement, Raytheon will develop and implement a series of simulations-based investigations that share simulation and evaluation tools, software development and system integration expertise. The Fires Center of Excellence Battle Lab at Fort Sill, Okla., will also provide resources through an additional agreement with SMDC-ARSTRAT and will benefit from the CRADA efforts. The CRADA will include analysis to enhance near space and space payloads along with their controlling platforms and their associated command and control functions; improvements in overall battle command architecture; netted radars and sensors; intercept capability; and timelines for effect on targets.
Oct 07. Blazepoint Limited announced the signing of a UK Distribution Agreement with Fargo Electronics, a global leader in secure technologies for card identity systems. Following Fargo’s acquisition by HID Global last autumn, and the subsequent significant investment in its international business, Fargo has been seeking new distributors in specific geographies to expand its current channels and help develop business in existing and new markets. Fargo’s full range of identity card issuance systems, including secure card printer/encoders, materials and software will compliment Blazepoint’s existing ID plastic card business; offering simple one-sided monochrome to highly complex, full colour, dual-sided laminate options with high security features. The versatile and modular design of the Fargo product range allows customers the ability to extend their print capabilities as their requirements change and budgets grow.
09 Oct 07. Raytheon Company has entered a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement, or CRADA, with the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command-U.S. Army Forces Strategic Command (SMDC-ARSTRAT) to investigate improvements to integrated air and missile defense mission effectiveness. Under the five-year agreement, Raytheon will develop and implement a series of simulations-based investigations