Lasercom compatibility validation will have to wait: Only Tesat has terminals on launched SDA satellites

by Peter B. de Selding

PARIS — The 23 satellites launched for the U.S. Space Development Agency (SDA) carry laser optical communications terminals (OCTs) built by only one of the four companies SDA has selected to test this key technology, with the other three waiting for future SDA launches, industry officials said.

That will delay, until the next tranche of satellites, any validation of whether the OCT builders have been able to meet a key SDA requirement: that they be able to communicate with competitors’ hardware.

It will also complicate the decision . . .

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