GSA Awards $750m in Satcom II Contracts to 24 Companies

The General Services Administration (GSA) yesterday inked deals with 24 satellite communications companies to deliver the next-generation satellite solutions for government agencies, known as Satcom II.

The Satcom II program is meant "to provide an expanded range of end-to-end satellite solutions for government agencies and serves as the primary replacement vehicle for the highly successful Satellite Services contracts."

Among the service providers are nine small business contractors, according to Washington Technology:

The large contractors are Americom Government Services Inc.; Arrowhead Global Solutions Inc.; Artel, Inc.; AT&T Corp.; DRS Technical Services; EDS Corp.; Global Communications Solutions Inc.; Hughes Network Systems LLC; Intelsat General Corp.; Mackay Communications Inc.; Segovia Inc.; Stratos Mobile Network Inc.; Telecommunications Systems Inc.; Telenor Satellite Services and ViaSat Inc. The small business awardees are CVG Inc.; DasNet Corp.; E&E Enterprises Global; Knight Sky Consulting and Associates LLC; New Orleans Teleport Inc.; Psi Systems Inc.; RiteNet Corp.; Satellite Communication Systems Inc. and Skjei Telecom Inc.

The same story provides details on the Satcom II system:

The Satcom II system will allow federal workers to use hand-held receivers similar to cell phones, as well as access full broadband computer networks, anywhere in the world. It is designed for use in areas where no phone or cable lines exist and to help federal workers fight wilderness wildfires, patrol remote borders and rescue the trapped and injured from hurricanes or tornadoes.

The system also makes possible broadcast services in distance learning for federal customers throughout the world…

The GSA press release notes that the "SATCOM-II program has an estimated value of $750 million over the life of the five-year, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contracts, and… offers competitive pricing throughout the life of the contract, as well as flexible ordering and billing."

Computerworld also files a report on the contracts, which, while certainly important to the businesses that inked them, essentially provide basic satcom services. The really cool technological breakthroughs (such as the next-stage C4ISR bandwidth, advanced extremely high frequency satellites and Wideband Global Satcom program) tend to come through military contracts.