6/2/2015 - LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Today the Space and Missile Systems Center released a formal solicitation seeking proposals for shared public-private investments in rocket propulsion system prototypes.
This solicitation is part of a comprehensive Air Force plan to
transition off the Russian supplied RD-180 propulsion system used on the
Atlas V rocket by investing in industry launch solutions with the
ultimate goal to competitively procure launch services in a robust
domestic launch market.
The Air Force will award a portfolio of investments on a rolling basis
in up to four of industry's Rocket Propulsion System (RPS) solutions.
These investments, which will last approximately 12-18 months, will
build the foundation for awarding separate investments in industry's
launch system solutions and secure launch service commitments from
Concurrently, the Air Force will continue to competitively award launch
services contracts to certified providers who demonstrate the capability
to design, produce, qualify, and deliver launch systems and provide the
mission assurance support required to deliver national security space
satellites to orbit.
"The end goal of our strategy is to have two or more domestic,
commercially viable launch providers that also meet national security
space requirements," said Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves, the Air Force's
Program Executive Officer for Space and the Commander of SMC. "This is
essential in order to solidify U.S. assured access to space, transition
the EELV program away from strategic foreign reliance, and support the
U.S. launch industry's commercial viability in the global market."
Air Force Space Command's Space and Missile Systems Center, located at
Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., is the U.S. Air Force's center of
acquisition excellence for acquiring and developing military space
systems. Its portfolio includes the Global Positioning System, military
satellite communications, defense meteorological satellites, space
launch and range systems, satellite control networks, space based
infrared systems and space situational awareness capabilities.