Virtual reality and 3D printing can significant shrink the time it takes to build hardware used to put military satellites into space, says Rick Ambrose, head of Lockheed Martin Space Systems, and Lockheed is pursuing both strategies. "The government's constrained in the space trade by how long it takes us to build a satellite," said Ambrose, speaking at 30th national Space Symposium held this week in Colorado Springs. "The way to change the economics by saying, whether I'm building you a large or a small satellite, I can get to you in less than five years. That gets driven down the supply chain, so ability to change that timeline changes everything."
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