The company – a specialist in electronics for space applications – is based in Centennial, Colorado, which is where the work will be carried out.
There is an estimated completion date of March 2022, states the US Department of Defense.
Back in October 2019, SEAKR was first awarded a DARPA Pit Boss contract supporting the Blackjack Proliferated Low Earth Orbit Demonstration Programme.
This aims to integrate commercial satellite technologies into a constellation of “affordable, small, secure, and resilient military satellites”. The idea is to replace existing costly and monolithic systems – in geosynchronous orbit – that are vulnerable targets and would take years to replace if degraded or destroyed.
It aims to develop a global high-speed network in low Earth orbit (LEO) that provides the US Department of Defense with highly connected and resilient coverage (basically delivering, for military needs, a persistent overhead access to any point on the globe).
SEAKR’s Pit Boss system will support the mission as a next-generation on-board processor. The company says it aims “to deliver state of the art processing capability incorporating autonomous operations, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning techniques, and bridged terrestrial and on-orbit technologies”.
“Pulling from its established heritage capabilities, strength in RF communications, along with the continuous product and architectural advancement, SEAKR continues to define leading edge, state-of-practice processing systems in partnership with Government, Civil, and Commercial entities. SEAKR’s previous study and prototype advancements have successfully contributed to our customer’s ability to solve complex challenges imperative in advancing capability to meet today’s most daunting mission objectives. Key technologies being deployed and leveraged include: ADC and DAC Technologies, FPGA-based Processing Technologies, and ASIC-Based Processing Technologies.”
Other contributors to the mission have been Microsoft, Applied Technology Associates, Advanced Solutions, Kythera Space Solutions and NKrypt.
Image – DARPA