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RTX satellite imagers launched with Maxar’s WorldView Legion

08 May 2024

Advanced imagers will provide diverse high-resolution visual data in real time.

Two next-generation imaging instruments designed by Raytheon, an RTX business, were launched this week as part of Maxar’s WorldView Legion satellites.

Maxar, based in Westminster, CO, USA, provides secure, precise geospatial intelligence, enabling its government and commercial customers to monitor and navigate the Earth. From defense and intelligence to “living maps” for navigation, its WorldView Legion satellite imagery is specified to support diverse missions.

These launches are the first two of six planned WorldView Legion satellites, which will provide whatt he partners call “a significant leap forward in Earth observation capabilities, offering improved surveillance and monitoring for a wide range of applications.”

Positioned in low Earth orbit, the satellites are designed to provide the highest commercially available resolution, and when all six join the Maxar Intelligence constellation, they will enable a revisit rate of up to 15 times per day over the most populated parts of Earth, says Raytheon.

‘Multiple applications’

The satellites will support applications across multiple sectors, including national security, military and commercial mapping, maritime monitoring, telecommunications network planning, change detection and feature identification.

“Raytheon’s advanced instrument technology provides 30cm high-resolution satellite imagery that enables WorldView Legion to fulfill our customer needs and adapt to the evolving needs of tomorrow,” said Nicholas Yiakas, director of Civil, Commercial, and Special Programs for Raytheon.

Raytheon’s telescope design is the culmination of 15 years of research and development into a novel optical material that is stronger and lighter than previous designs. As part of the effort, Raytheon received 8 patents from the U.S. Patent Office.

The combination of lighter optics and electronics allowed Maxar to reduce spacecraft mass by more than two times, reducing time to orbit and launch costs. The high-resolution image is focused onto a next-generation digital focal plane array designed and built by Raytheon to provide high-resolution multispectral images.

The satellite imagery collected by WorldView Legion will aid in assessing humanitarian needs, providing aid to natural disasters and businesses with transformational capabilities including mapping and logistical planning, insights to world events and supporting national defense.

ABTechTRIOPTICS GmbHHÜBNER PhotonicsUniverse Kogaku America Inc.LaCroix Precision OpticsLASEROPTIK GmbHSPECTROGON AB
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