Orbital ATK said Thursday it will start providing satellite servicing support through the Mission Extension Vehicle 2 by mid-2020 under the contract.
The Dulles, Virginia-based aerospace and defense contractor’s spacecraft components division will produce the propellant tanks, structures and solar arrays for MEV-2 through its facilities in California.
Orbital ATK’s rendezvous, proximity operations and docking laboratory in Virginia will test the control algorithms, actuators and sensors that work to help the vehicle detect and move toward a client spacecraft.
The MEV-2 production contract supports Orbital ATK’s plan to build a fleet of commercial servicing vehicles that will work to provide refueling, repair and assembly support to in-orbit satellites and meet other space logistics requirements.
Intelsat initially tapped Orbital ATK in April 2016 to develop and launch MEV-1.
“Work on MEV-1 is progressing rapidly toward a late 2018 launch with system-level testing beginning this spring,” said Tom Wilson, president of Orbital ATK’s Space Logistics subsidiary.
MEV-1 has a docking system and is based on the Orbital ATK-built GEOStar space vehicle platform.
Orbital ATK’s Space Logistics received initial approval from the Federal Communications Commission in December to conduct in-orbit servicing work on the Intelsat-901 satellite through MEV-1.