Northrop Grumman and the US Space Force (USSF) concluded a delta Critical Design Review (dCDR) for the Enhanced Polar System Recapitalization (EPS-R) Control and Planning Segment (CAPS) programme.

The completion of dCDR will be followed by the development, integration and test phase of the programme.

Military satellite communications in North Polar Region of the Earth will be facilitated by EPS-R CAPS.

EPS-R CAPS will help in providing secure, jam-resistant, strategic and tactical communications.

With a single software baseline, CAPS serves as a ground system that provides command and control and mission planning for all four of the EPS/EPS-R payloads.

Northrop Grumman strategic force programmes vice-president Rob Fleming said: “The successful completion of this milestone demonstrates our team’s commitment to agile processes.

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“Extensive collaboration between the Northrop Grumman and customer teams was a large part of the design review success.

“The final design review content was shaped in cross-functional working group meetings in the preceding weeks leading up to and resulting in a high-quality dCDR event that met 100% of the exit criteria within 13 months of the contract’s authority to proceed.”

In addition to the ground segment, EPS-R comprises two extended Data Rate (XDR) payloads developed by Northrop Grumman.

These payloads will provide coverage in the region until the Protected Tactical SATCOM and Evolved Strategic SATCOM polar variants become operational in the 2030s.

Last month, the US Air Force (USAF) formally accepted Northrop Grumman’s Enhanced Polar System (EPS) CAPS programme.

The acceptance marks Northrop’s conclusion of a five-year project to design, develop, test and supply the EPS CAPS for the Military Satellite Communications Systems Directorate (MILSATCOM).