Combining to Simplify and Strengthen Competition to Build Safe,
Affordable Complement to the Space Shuttle
Corporation's Space Systems Company and Northrop Grumman
Corporation's Integrated Systems sector have moved NASA a
significant step closer to its goal of launching a safe, affordable
Orbital Space Plane (OSP) by 2008.
The two companies have agreed to establish a teaming arrangement
to compete for the full-scale development of the OSP.
Lockheed Martin will
lead the new team as the system prime contractor while Northrop
Grumman will serve as Lockheed Martin's principal teammate and
NASA expects to select a prime contractor team for the
full-scale OSP development by August 2004.
"The diverse talents,
technical resources and aerospace systems experience of our two
companies will help NASA reduce the schedule and cost risks of the
accelerated OSP program," said Michael Coats, vice president,
Lockheed Martin's Advanced Space Transportation. "Our collective
expertise in large-scale systems integration, space systems
engineering, launch vehicles, military aircraft, and autonomous
flight provide a critical foundation for NASA's efforts to restore
vigor and confidence to the nation's human spaceflight
NASA has specified that the OSP must provide a crew rescue
capability for the International Space Station by 2008, a two-year
acceleration in the OSP development schedule outlined last spring.
A two-way crew transfer OSP is also required by 2012. OSP will be
launched on either an Atlas V or Delta IV rocket.
"The combination of Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman on OSP
provides NASA with a critical opportunity to broaden the nation's
industrial base in the area of human spaceflight," said Doug Young,
director of Space Access Programs for Northrop Grumman Integrated
Systems. "The team will have the capability to design, develop,
test, produce, support and maintain a cost-effective, technically
superior crew rescue and transfer OSP system."
Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin are currently performing
separate OSP contracts for NASA. Awarded in April 2003, these
contracts focus on helping NASA develop Level One Requirements for
the OSP and on defining architectural concepts for proposed OSP
crew rescue and transfer vehicles. Northrop Grumman will complete
the current phase of its OSP contract, then become a Lockheed
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin employs about
125,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the
research, design, development, manufacture and integration of
advanced technology systems, products and services. Northrop
Grumman Integrated Systems, headquartered in El Segundo, Calif., is
a premier aerospace and defense systems integration enterprise.