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On Thursday, Raytheon (NYSE: RTN ) announced that it has won a $1.5 million contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to execute phase one of the agency's "Space Enabled Effects for Military Engagements" (SeeMe) program.
SeeMe is described as a program to "provide useful on-demand imagery information directly to the warfighter in the field from a low-cost satellite constellation launched on a schedule that conforms to Department of Defense operational tempos."
Over the next nine months, Raytheon will design the small satellites in question.The company says that, if ultimately awarded a production contract, it will be able to "mass produce these small, lightweight satellites quickly and affordably." Meantime, the company hopes to win a contract for phase two of the project, building six prototype satellites for SeeMe. In a statement, Raytheon cited its role as the only U.S. manufacturer of "exoatmospheric kill vehicles" (anti-satellite missiles ) as evidence of its experience in this field.
Raytheon is partnering with privately held Sierra Nevada Corporation and SRI International, as well as with the University of Arizona to assist with design work and, eventually, production.
Shares of Raytheon are down 0.9% on the day.