The company has won a $1.18 billion contract to support and improve the operation and accuracy of the Southern Positioning Augmentation Network (SouthPAN).
The deal is set to last 19 years and aims to deliver “instant, accurate and reliable positioning” to industry and community users across both Australia and New Zealand.
Specifically, the SouthPAN initiative involves delivery of a signal augmenting GPS and Galileo, designed to improve accuracy from 5-10 metres, to within as little as 10 centimetres.
Lockheed Martin will work with the Toitū Te Whenua Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) department and Geoscience Australia under the Australia New Zealand Science, Research and Innovation Cooperation agreement to facilitate the delivery of the project.
The enhanced position capability being delivered by the project is expected to be leveraged by a range of users across various industries, including civil aviation, general vehicle guidance, maritime shipping tracking, drone and UAV navigation, as well as numerous uses in the agricultural industry.
As part of its work, LMA is expected to work with the SouthPAN project team to establish a network of Global Navigation Satellite System reference stations and satellite uplink facilities.
This is tipped to enable communications and transmissions with the SouthPAN space infrastructure.
Lockheed Martin Australia and New Zealand chief executive Warren McDonald AO, CSC, welcomed the SouthPAN contract, stating it reflects the Australian and New Zealand governments’ shared commitment to improve space services and the industry.
“As we look to the future and the arrival of new and emerging space technologies, our company is committed to growing a long-term and sustainable space presence in Australia,” he added.
David Ball, regional director of space for Lockheed Martin Australia and New Zealand said the SouthPAN project is reflective of rapid growth across the space sector.
“Space is among our fastest growing areas, and our local technical team will play an important role in delivering the benefits of SouthPAN capability to service many sectors including aviation, agriculture, transport, mining and other industries,” he said.
“Lockheed Martin is a global leader in satellite navigation technology, providing recent upgrades to the US government’s GPS constellation.
“We look forward to working with the Australian and New Zealand governments to deploy this world-class technology.”
Liam McAneny is a journalist who has written and edited for his University International Relations journal. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (International Relations) and Bachelor of Laws from the University of Wollongong in 2021. He joined Momentum Media in 2022 and currently writes for SpaceConnect and Australian Aviation. Liam has a keen interest in geopolitics and international relations as well as astronomy.
Send Liam an email at: [email protected]
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