WASHINGTON, May 23 (Reuters) - The U.S. Air Force plans to purchase 60 additional satellite launches through fiscal year 2028, which will more than double the cost of its launch program to $70.7 billion, according to a new Pentagon report on its biggest weapons programs.
The report, which was sent to Congress on Thursday, showed a projected $35.7 billion or 102 percent increase in the cost of the Air Force's Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle program, under which contractors provide launch services to lift U.S. military and intelligence satellites into orbit.
A copy of the report was posted on the Pentagon's website.
United Launch Alliance, a joint venture run by Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co, provides the launch services to the Air Force, but the service is trying to open the launch program to competition from other companies.
Among those vying for future launches are Orbital Sciences Corp and privately owned Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX.
(Reporting By Andrea Shalal-Esa) Keywords: PETNAGON SATELLITE/LAUNCHES
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