Space force

US Space Force awards contract for simulation and wargaming environment

WASHINGTON – Slingshot Aerospace today announced that it is developing a digital replica of the space environment for the U.S. Space Force under a new $25 million contract to rapidly deliver training and war game.

The company’s Digital Space Twin simulates the space environment and maps orbiting objects and space weather in real time. Slingshot has developed the tool as a commercial product over the past two years and, through the new contract, will adapt it to Space Force missions to “enhance their ability to analyze and respond to current and future threats,” Slingshot said in a press release Thursday. The company plans to deliver the commercial version before finalizing the government product.

As an analytical tool, the digital twin could be used in war games and mission planning or to design future constellations. Digital products like this are a priority for the Space Force as it develops its cloud-based digital engineering ecosystem – an environment for industry to collaborate with the service, perform program reviews and share virtual models.

As part of the 39-month contract, the company will also provide its Slingshot Laboratory space simulation platform, which can be used by the Space Force to teach the basics of advanced aerodynamics. Slingshot will develop four pilot programs to support basic military training, the National Security Space Institute, 319th Combat Training Squadron and 533rd Training Squadron.

The company’s chief executive, Melanie Stricklan, said the combined delivery of the lab product and the digital twin gives Space Force “an extraordinary suite of products.”

The contract was funded by Space Systems Command as well as SpaceWERX, through its Strategic Funding Program (STRATFI), designed to help bridge the “valley of death” between technology development and commissioning. SpaceWERX annually awards contracts through STRATFI for technologies that can meet important mission requirements.

Courtney Albon is C4ISRNET’s Space and Emerging Technologies Journalist. She previously covered the US Air Force and US Space Force for Inside Defense.