Lockheed Martin (IW 500/30) announced on Sept. 10 that it has opened the Optical Payload Center of Excellence in order to advance optical systems that power innovations used in satellites, lasers, telescopes and targeting systems.
The center brings together experts across the world from Lockheed Martin, its industry partners and research universities with the goal of developing optical payload technologies that are more “powerful, precise and affordable than today's systems,” Lockheed says.
"The Optical Payload Center of Excellence will benefit from the digital tapestry that links all stages of development, from initial concept and design to production and qualification," said Rick Ambrose, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space Systems. "We are leading the way, using immersive virtual reality systems and 3-D printing, to simplify manufacturing and assembly processes. This reduces cost and accelerates the delivery of complex systems."
The center will provide a place for experts to collaborate, develop, test and produce optical payloads. Scientists and engineers will not only advance technology but also research ways to deliver exacting capability faster. For example, sensitive optics on NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph are delivering incredible new images of hidden areas of the sun using a small satellite, which went from concept to payload completion in just 36 months.
"Our customers are increasingly turning to optical payloads for their unrivaled precision and power, particularly on satellite systems," Ambrose said.