U.S. military space systems for Australia

Nov. 14, 2012 at 11:52 AM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- The U.S. military is locating two key space systems -- the U.S. Air Force C-band ground radar system and of the Space Surveillance Telescope -- in Australia.

The decision, agreed to by U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Australian Defense Minister Stephen Smith, advances a bilateral partnership on space situational awareness, the Pentagon said.

The Air Force C-band ground-based radar system will provide a dedicated sensor for the U.S. Space Surveillance Network for detecting, tracking and identifying objects in space.

The Space Surveillance Telescope, designed and built by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, provides surveillance capability of deep space.

The C-Band radar will be operated from the Harold E. Holt Naval Communications Station at North West Cape in Western Australia, the U.S. Defense Department said. It will be delivered in 2014 and the countries will its relocation costs from New Mexico and in its operational costs.

"In addition, the U.S. and Australia are in discussions on the establishment of a Combined Communications Gateway in Western Australia," the Pentagon said. "The Gateway would provide both U.S. and Australia operators access to Wideband Global Satellite communications satellites currently on orbit."

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