SouthPAN – enhancing precision navigation and positioning


We speak with David Ball, Regional Director Australia New Zealand, Lockheed Martin Space

David is the Regional Director Australia New Zealand for Lockheed Martin Space, representing the space portfolio of capabilities and services in the region. David was the Chief Executive Officer of the Space Environment Research Centre (SERC) before he joined Lockheed Martin in 2020. Prior to this role, David held senior positions with several commercial satellite communications operators, including Intelsat and PanAmSat. David’s previous roles encompassed sales management, business development, customer service engineering and space systems development. David also held leadership roles in the Space Industry Association of Australia (SIAA) for more than a decade, culminating in his tenure as Chair of the SIAA during 2020. David has over 25 years of experience in the space, communications and defence sectors. David holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree (Communications Engineering) and a Graduate Diploma in Business Management and is a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

The government of Australia have awarded Lockheed Martin a $1.18 billion contract to establish the Southern Positioning Augmentation Network (SouthPAN) to enhance precision. The system is expected to be fully operational by 2028, and will be provided as a service for 19 years with an option to extend.

The program will use a unique, Lockheed Martin-developed, Second-Generation Satellite-Based Augmentation System (SBAS), broadcasting on two frequencies to augment signals from two Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS), the U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS) and the European Union’s Galileo system.

The SouthPAN contract will expand Lockheed Martin’s investments toward sustainable business growth in Australia. Currently, Lockheed Martin programs support around 4,000 Australian jobs in advanced manufacturing and technology industries. This contract will grow that footprint with additional jobs in at least four States.

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Interview conducted as Media Partners to Avalon 2023 – visit



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