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DISA Invites Allies to Join Iridium Mobile Satellite Services Program

satelliteThe Defense Information Systems Agency has called on U.S. allied countries to join the agency’s program that works to provide unlimited access to Iridium‘s constellation of mobile communications satellites, Space News reported Friday.

Peter de Selding writes Clare Grason, DISA program manager of the Enhanced Mobile Satellite Services program, said allies can pay a fixed rate to access Iridium’s constellation through a DISA-operated gateway as well as add an unlimited number of devices.

DISA awarded the five-year, $400 million EMSS contract to Iridium in 2013 to give U.S. government agencies access to Iridium’s satellite constellation at a fixed cost.

Grason said Iridium has activated 85,000 subscriber units under the contract primarily for military users and approximately 15 percent for civilian agencies.

Grason noted DISA and Iridium will begin negotiations for a new contract in 2017 and that the agency does not need to wait for the launch of the Iridium Next second-generation constellation.

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