Artists' impression: ConLCT80, Optical Head & Electrical Unit  © TESAT

Backnang, 01 December 2023 - TESAT delivers the first SDA Tranche 1 Transport Layer Optical Communication Terminals to Lockheed Martin.

TESAT delivered the OCTs to prime contractor Lockheed Martin for integration on 42 small satellites that the company is building for the Space Development Agency’s (SDA) Tranche 1 Transport Layer. The Transport Layer provides low-latency and high-volume data connectivity for SDA’s Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture.

In the previous OCT product release, designed for SDA Tranche 0 Transport and Tracking Layer, TESAT delivered in total 58 OCTs to five different satellite manufacturers. Out of those 58 OCTs, 48 units are in orbit today. Thereof, 46 units are on SDA’s Tranche 0 satellite network, which launched earlier this year and provides a resilient network of integrated capabilities.

In preparation for the SDA Tranche 1 Flight Model delivery, TESAT successfully performed interoperability tests with a third party utilizing an Engineering Model out of TESATs high volume OCT manufacturing line. With the successful interoperability testing of the Engineering Model, TESAT`s OCTs are ready to exchange data with other third-party products.

The improved design of the OCT for SDA Tranche 1 consists of a Dual EU, the combination of two optical heads with one Electronic Unit (EU), to save weight and space on satellite payloads with a transmission rate of 2.5 Gbps. TESAT is currently ramping up its production capacity, utilizing a new manufacturing building at the site that is close to completion. With the adjusted production capacity of OCTs and the resulting cost reduction, TESAT is prepared to deliver the necessary amount for low-Earth orbit OCTs to satisfy future market needs.


TESAT is a world-leading manufacturer for satellite equipment. More than 1,100 employees develop, manufacture and distribute systems and equipment for satellite communications every day. The product range spans from the smallest space-specific components to modules, entire assemblies or payloads. As the world’s only provider and technology leader of in-orbit-verified optical communication terminals for data transmission via laser, TESAT has a focus on commercial and institutional space programs. Thanks to our deep understanding of market needs, customer focus and technological innovation, we offer products that contribute to sustainable development. For all mankind, for a better world.


Tesat-Spacecom GmbH & Co. KG
Gerberstraße 49
D-71522 Backnang

Andreas Schramm
Marketing & Communications Manager
+49 7191 930 - 2451
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Victoria-Louisa Kirstein
Head of Communications & Marketing
+49 7191 930 - 1039
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© Tesat-Spacecom GmbH & Co. KG, 2022
Tesat-Spacecom GmbH & Co. KG
Gerberstr. 49
71522 Backnang