SAIC touts $255M space win but says little else

SAIC scores a $255 million contract for services to support space activities in the U.S. but won't say who it's with.

Science Applications International Corp. has won a $255 million contract with an unidentified customer for systems engineering and technical assurance services to support space activities inside the U.S.

And while very little else was disclosed in SAIC’s release Thursday, this appears to give the company an added footprint in a space market that is growing both in size and also in relative secrecy.

As reported earlier this year by SpaceNews, the Defense Department’s unclassified national security space request sought a 9-percent increase for the 2019 fiscal year.

But that is merely the public number. Within the past year, defense and government IT companies have identified classified space as a growth market not only regarding the platforms in orbit but also the ground element that controls them.

In an April earnings call, Raytheon executives noted ground-based control as an opportunity amid an increasing awareness of space being a contested environment with China, Russia and other U.S. adversaries as emerging players.

That awareness and expected recapitalization of U.S. space assets also led Northrop Grumman to make its blockbuster acquisition of Orbital ATK that closed in June.

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