DULLES, Va., Nov 24, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE:ORB) announced today that it has been awarded a $2 million contract by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to conduct studies of potential space and ground system architectures for the next generation of the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) system known as GOES-R. The GOES-R system will use geostationary (GEO) satellites, equipped with advanced remote sensing instruments, to conduct environmental monitoring and weather forecasting activities for the U.S. Government and scientific community.

Under the contract, Orbital will develop concepts that will allow NOAA to meet its future requirements for environmental sensing, data collection and data distribution. Orbital will complete studies for the GOES-R system's Space and Launch segment, its Command, Control and Communications (C3) segment, and its End-to-End Systems Integration segment.

"Orbital is very excited to be selected to assist NOAA in determining the most effective space and ground system to meet its future needs for the GOES system," said Mr. David W. Thompson, Orbital's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We look forward to applying Orbital's broad experience in developing innovative approaches to U.S. Government Earth observation missions for this critical NOAA program."

Since its founding, Orbital has designed, developed and built over 90 satellites for civil government, military, commercial and international space agency customers. The company's satellite products include state-of-the-art platforms for low-Earth and geostationary orbit missions. Orbital's recent investments in its all-new STAR satellite product line has resulted in the company's rapid growth in the commercial market for GEO satellites, with orders for eight satellites in the last three years. The company is also applying technology from its STAR satellites to an advanced government scientific program, the Dawn planetary spacecraft mission that is being carried out for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Mr. Jack Danko, Orbital's Executive Vice President and General Manager of its Space Systems Group, stated, "Orbital's experience in designing complete space and ground systems for both low-Earth and geostationary orbit spacecraft gives us the background to make meaningful contributions to NOAA's GOES-R program. We will use our proven ability to design cost-effective, flexible and low risk architectures in support of NOAA's initiative."

About Orbital

Orbital develops and manufactures small space systems for commercial, civil government and military customers. The company's primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-orbit, geostationary and planetary spacecraft for communications, remote sensing and scientific missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense boosters that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also offers space-related technical services to government agencies and develops and builds satellite-based transportation management systems for public transit agencies and private vehicle fleet operators.

SOURCE: Orbital Sciences Corporation

Orbital Sciences Corporation
Barron Beneski, 703-406-5528
Beneski.barron@orbital.com
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