“Early on-orbit data show Pony Express 1 is performing its important path-finding mission very well,” Lockheed Martin Space Executive Vice President Rick Ambrose said in the release. “This is the first of several rapid, self-funded experiments demonstrating our ability to systematically accelerate our customers' speed to mission while reducing risk from new technologies.”
The satellite uses software developed for mesh communications between satellites and shared processing capabilities to handle data from sensors, as well as array of other technical advances, the release said.
Lockheed Martin added that the satellite provided an early example of "rapid prototyping," a term used to describe a Defense Department initiative to quickly develop new weapons systems instead of decades now required by the Pentagon bureaucracy.
The satellite was developed, built and integrated in nine months, and was funded completely by Lockheed Martin, the release said.