More Capable LM 400 Satellite Bus Designed to Meet Urgent Mission Needs

Lockheed Martin is investing in and soon launching a technology demonstration mission of the latest product, the LM 400, designed for a rapidly evolving, dynamic threat environment with greater mission flexibility and longer-duration orbit life. With capabilities previously only possible with larger satellites, this highly configurable satellite bus offers greater on-board processing power and a software-reconfigurable payload interface.

About the size of a refrigerator, the LM 400 bus conforms with Modular Open Systems Architecture (MOSA) and Lockheed Martin’s SmartSat™ software-defined satellite platform, easily supporting new mission requirements. SmartSat introduces cloud-like data processing in-orbit to dramatically shorten the sensor to shooter timeframe – the time it takes for a commander to act on information obtained by a sensor like a camera. That data can be directly downlinked by warfighters in theater.

“The LM 400 provides an unmatched flexibility to fly any mission from LEO to GEO,” said Rick Ambrose, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space. “Our investment in the LM 400 demonstrates our engineering excellence and is a result of our hybrid architecture approach to meeting customers’ evolving and dynamic mission environments.”

Building off the success of the Pony Express mission, the mid-size LM 400 meets the need for constellation architectures and operational tech insertions with high capability at a lower cost point leveraging scalability and producibility. This bus further offers expanded power options, mission lives that can extend up to 10 years and multi-core processing that is foundational to cloud-like services, increased cyber resiliency and artificial intelligence in-orbit. 

The upcoming internal payload technology demonstrations of the LM 400 under development include a variety of mission areas, such as earth observation, global ubiquitous communications, climate monitoring and beyond.