TOTE Services contracted for SBX-1 ballistic missile tracking radar

TOTE Services of Jacksonville, Fla., has received an $11 million contract for operation and maintenance of the Sea-Based X-Band Radar vessel.

The contract, announced Wednesday by the Department of Defense, will last one year with four-and-a-half years worth of possible options, which could bring the cumulative value of this contract to $65.3 million, the Pentagon said.

Work will be conducted at sea-based positions across the world and is expected to be completed by September 2019. If the options are exercised, the program will continue through March 2024. Working capital funds will be issued for the contract depending on availability.

The SBX-1 is a large sea-based radar system designed for mobile long-range detection of ballistic missiles by the Missile Defense Agency. The MDA claims it could detect a baseball-sized object being launched into the stratosphere from thousands of miles away.

The radar is mounted on a modified oil exploration vessel more than an acre in size and has a height of more than 280 feet. It displaces more than 50,000 tons and is so large in cannot traverse the Panama canal.

Along with missile detection, it is used for tracking ballistic missile defense system tests. It is the most powerful sea-going radar in the world.