"One thing I can say for certain is that with regards to ideas, the more the better. And if you can look across the broad space ecosystem and pull in as many ideas as possible, regardless of the size of the vendor that's promoting that idea, you're going to be more successful at it putting solid innovative ideas on the plate."U.S. Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. B. Chance Saltzman, during his confirmation hearing for Chief of Space Operations

Space Development Agency Systems, Technologies, and Emerging Capabilities (STEC) Broad Agency Announcement

Original Date Offers Due: January 16, 2024

Through this updated Systems, Technologies, and Emerging Capabilities (STEC) Broad Agency Announcement (BAA), SDA is soliciting executive summaries, invited proposal abstracts, and invited proposals for novel architecture concepts, systems, technologies, and capabilities that enable leap-ahead improvements for future tranches of the agency's proliferated network of currently planned capability layers, or, that enable new capability layers to address other emerging or evolving warfighter needs.

SDA is seeking architecture studies, concepts of operations (CONOPS), modeling and simulation, system designs, key technologies, and/or risk reduction prototypes that are responsive to the following capability vectors:

• Efficient Beyond Line-of-Sight Data Transport and Warfighter Communications

• Advanced Target Custody, Warning, Tracking and Defeat

• Global Battle Management

Although not required, SDA strongly encourages submitting an executive summary in advance of a full proposal to ensure interest and potential funding availability. SDA releases an updated Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) on an annual basis. Because SDA strives to always maintain an active BAA with similar focus areas, proposers are discouraged from submitting uninvited full proposals shortly before the BAA proposal due date simply to meet the submission deadline. They should consider instead submitting an executive summary to the subsequent BAA.

Please see the BAA for detailed descriptions of capability vectors and submission instructions.


SDA Issues Special Notice seeking Proposals for Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) Backhaul Capability Concepts

Response Date: May 26, 2023

The Space Development Agency (SDA) seeks proposals to perform engineering studies, analyses, and technical trades for a "low-Earth orbit (LEO) backhaul" capability to support high bandwidth data transport via the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture (PWSA).

The bulk of SDA's Transport Layer efforts to date have been focused on delivering DOD's Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) backbone through tactical data links and edge connectivity capability. This call for proposals looks to expand that focus to provide LEO backhaul capability to deliver additional high-bandwidth data transport for DOD, with different specifications and additional capabilities beyond the edge data network already built into SDA's Transport Layer.

The purpose of this 90-day study (or studies) is to perform market research on industry capabilities to deliver the contemplated LEO backhaul capability, and inform government reference designs and potential follow-on acquisition of such a capability. SDA is interested in options that leverage, to the maximum extent possible, existing or planned commercial, optically-interconnected orbital mesh network and ground infrastructure. View the full special notice listing for specific timeline, additional details, and deliverables required.

Through this enhanced LEO backhaul data transport capability, SDA will continue to build out DOD's resilient, proliferated LEO architecture in the PWSA.


SDA Issues Solicitation for Tranche 2 Transport Layer (T2TL) Beta Space Vehicles

Updated Response Date: May 24, 2023 at Noon ET

The Space Development Agency (SDA) seeks U.S. industry proposals for the Transport Layer Beta variant space vehicles (SVs) that will form the foundation of Tranche 2 of the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture (PWSA).

The T2TL SVs will be similar to those currently under development for the Tranche 1 Transport Layer (T1TL) and Tranche 1 Development and Experimentation System (T1DES), with targeted technology enhancements, mission-focused payload configurations, increased integration, and greater production efficiencies. T2TL will provide global communications access and deliver persistent regional encrypted connectivity in support of Warfighter missions around the globe. Specifically, T2TL features multiple SV and mission configuration variants procured through a multi-solicitation and multi-vendor acquisition approach.

This solicitation is for the Beta variant of the T2TL as summarized in the table below.

table 2

Performer SVs and communications systems must be interoperable with the SVs and systems developed by other Tranche 2 performers, as well as the performers deployed in Tranche 1. The SVs must have the ability to operate within an integrated common ground system.

Please view the full solicitation at the link below for additional information and submission instructions.

Responses are now due by Noon EDT on May 24, 2023.


SDA Posts Solicitation for Sabre Payloads

Response Date: April 17, 2023

SDA seeks industry solutions for a payload system that will add multiple new mission capability demonstrations to the NExT (experimental testbed) constellation. The payload system will deliver three (3) independent functional capabilities, collectively referred to as the Sabre payload:

• Collecting and relaying telemetry from Vehicles Under Test (VUTs) on U.S. missile test ranges

• Alternative pointing, navigation, and timing (S-NAV/ALTNAV)

• Tactical Electronic Support (ES)

This solicitation is for the design, development, fabrication, integration, test, and delivery of three (3) Sabre flight payloads including support for integrating these payloads with NExT SVs and operating and sustaining them for future mission demonstrations. Please find additional details and submission instructions at the link below.


SDA Seeks Industry Feedback ahead of Tranche 2 Tracking Layer Solicitation

Original Response Date: April 10, 2023

The Space Development Agency (SDA) seeks industry feedback on a low Earth orbit (LEO) Tracking Layer architecture that will provide global surveillance and targeting as a service with a 24/7/365 missile warning, missile tracking, and missile defense (MW/MT/MD) capability that is integrated for data routing with the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture's (PWSA) Transport Layer. This request for information inquires about mature infrared payloads for space-based sensing, constellation architecture(s), resiliency methods, and mission data processing parameters.

Responses to this RFI will inform SDA's Tranche 2 Tracking Layer planning in fiscal year 2023 for subsequent contract award in fiscal year 2024. In its Tranche 2 Tracking Layer, SDA seeks to provide near-global missile warning and tracking stereoscopic coverage, along with an initial missile defense fire control capability, to begin launching in mid-fiscal year 2027.

All responses received to this RFI are solely for information and planning purposes. Responses to this RFI may be used to inform future solicitations.


SDA Issues Solicitation for Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture (PWSA) Battle Management Command, Control, and Communications (BMC3) Application Factory

Response Date: March 16, 2023

The Space Development Agency (SDA) released an Other Transaction solicitation for a prototyping effort to establish the Battle Management Command, Control, and Communications (BMC3) software development and hosting environment for the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture (PWSA). The contractor selected will be responsible for the implementation of the BMC3 Application Factory (AppFac), the development of interfacing documentation, development processes for BMC3 Application deployment, and middleware to allow the PWSA BMC3 ecosystem to execute mission applications in support of warfighter needs.

This acquisition establishes software development capabilities to securely and rapidly field mission applications developed by BMC3 ecosystem participants in support of Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) objectives. This solicitation is for development and implementation of the BMC3 Application Factory (AppFac); development and sustainment of the Secure Interoperable-middleware layer (SIL); integration, testing, and operational support for BMC3 applications; and serving as BMC3 ecosystem integration lead.

The contractor responsibilities will enhance the capabilities of the PWSA to provide ubiquitous data communications and accelerated decision-making focused on enhancing the warfighters' ability to find-fix-finish, FAST.

Responses to this solicitation are due March 16, 2023.


SDA Participates in DoD's SBIR/STTR Program

SDA participates in the DoD Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program. Starting in October 2021, SDA began leveraging the DoD SBIR 22.4 Annual Program Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) and the DoD STTR 22.D Annual Program BAA. These programs are competitive opportunities to encourage domestic small businesses to engage in research and development with the DoD. SDA will use the SBIR/STTR program to enhance future tranches and to inform the overall architecture of spiral development projects to demonstrate warfighter capability via proliferated low Earth orbit. Through a competitive awards-based program, SDA's SBIR/STTR efforts will enable small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. SDA will post updated small business opportunities under the DoD Annual SBIR and STTR BAAs throughout the year as we identify specific technical topics for industry consideration and will consider partnering with other organizations such as DARPA or Air Force Research Lab (AFRL), based on their research interests and the quality of small business proposals. The annual BAAs close Dec. 31, 2022.

DoD STTR 22.D Annual Program BAA (HQ0034WHSOUSD22DSTTR10062021)

DoD SBIR 22.4 Annual Program BAA (HQ0034WHSOUSD10062021CS)

SDA Releases New Small Business Innovation Research Topic for Integrated Architecture Technology (IAT)

Original Response Date: April 12, 2022

SDA is issuing new Small Business Opportunities (SBO) under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, inviting submissions of innovative research concepts supporting the advancement of our national defense space capabilities. This SBO (SDA224-001) pertains to modeling, simulation and analysis (MS&A).

This project looks to develop and demonstrate an integrated architecture technology solution that will serve as a testbed, enabling realistic and informative mission design that facilitates the formation of traceable requirements.

This SBO is issued under the DOD Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) for SBIR, 2022.4. All proposals in response to the technical area(s) described herein must be submitted in accordance with the instructions provided under DoD SBIR FY2022.4, found at the link below. SDA is currently accepting and seeking proposals for Direct to Phase II (DP2) awards.


Opportunities Archive

SDA Resources


The Space Development Agency (SDA) has released via an update to the Department of Defense Optical Communication Terminal (OCT) Standard. Version 3.0.0 of the OCT Standard is designed to ensure interoperability, enable a strong marketplace, and provide advanced communication capabilities to terrestrial, maritime and airborne warfighting elements. More importantly, this standard provides interface specifications that enable space vehicles and payloads developed and operated by multiple organizations to readily exchange data via optical intersatellite links and to integrate with the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture allowing more partners to leverage the Transport Layer.


Laser optical links provide a large number of advantages over radio-frequency (RF) communications. Inherent to their design is the capacity to transport very large volumes of low latency data. Additionally, optical links provide anti-cyber capabilities that significantly reduces the vulnerability associated with RF communications. Many warfighting elements would also prefer communication capabilities defined by low probability of intercept (LPI) and low probability of detection (LPD). Laser optical links are by their very nature LPI/LPD and very difficult to jam.

SDA Optical Communication Terminal (OCT) Standard

SDA Contracts

All SDA contracts over $7 million are announced via the Department of Defense public notice process.