Sponsored By Viasat
04 Feb 20. Viasat Working Diligently to Top Their Record Breaking 2019 Performance. In the defense sector, Viasat aims to top a record-breaking 2019 by improving their Defense and Government Communications technology for warfighters, all of which will drive the company’s efforts in 2020 to improve crucial communications for warfighters.
Having achieved a series of key milestones over the course of the last year, 2020 may prove to be another record-breaking period for Viasat as the company continues to enhance its market-leading technology and thoughtful leadership throughout the defense sector.
Highlights in 2019 saw Viasat’s Government Systems business exceeding $1bn in annual revenue for the first time in the company’s history.
Viasat was also prominently featured across a series of industry-leading government rankings. These saw the company climbing from 82nd to 46th in the “2019 Washington Technology Top 100” as well as jumping 90 spots in the “Bloomberg Government (BGOV) 2019 Federal Industry Leaders List”. Viasat also demonstrated differentiated progress in the 2019 “Defense News Top 100”.
According to Viasat’s President for Government Systems, Ken Peterman, this ongoing success presents an exciting future for the company as it continues to support warfighters and military forces operating around the world. He said that Viasat is one of the fastest movers in terms of growth trajectory in the defense market today. The company’s unique culture of innovation, technology leadership, agile development processes and flexible business models are seeing enormous demand from warfighters and the firm’s military customers.
Peterman highlighted the company’s mix of veterans, engineers and technologists as key to the company’s ability to maneuver in a more entrepreneurial fashion throughout the defense market. He noted that this agility enables Viasat to accelerate the delivery of cutting-edge mobile networking, cybersecurity, information assurance, satellite communications and cloud-enabled capabilities to support today’s warfighter.
Peterman continued by stating that most of these technologies were invented by the defense community, but over the past 15 years, leadership has firmly transitioned into commercial hands. That enables companies such as Viasat to continue to accelerate the delivery of turnkey capabilities at unprecedented levels.
Today’s private sector technology is moving faster than the current acquisition systems and processes can move. Viasat, in large part, is moving beyond traditional acquisition process and policies to get much needed technology to the warfighter, faster and more effectively than ever before. A close understanding of the customer by Viasat’s team is instrumental to this success.
- A specific technology area of interest completed by Viasat in 2019 included ongoing development and growth of the company’s next generation tactical data link (NGTDL) business
- Key NGTDL milestones achieved throughout the year included the delivery of the 1,500th KOR-24A Small Tactical Terminal (STT)
- Delivery of almost the 2,500th AN/PRC-161 Battlefield Awareness and Targeting System-Dismounted (BATS-D) handheld Link 16 radio
- Successful integration of Advanced Concurrent Multiple Reception (CMR) technology capabilities across Viasat’s extensive line of next generation link 16 products
- New advancements for the company’s Move out / Jump off (MOJO) expeditionary tactical gateway system, which is designed to blend air and ground situation awareness pictures.
In 2019, Viasat also won a development contract to design the first Link 16 satellite that will be launched into LEO. This enables the future possibility of the company extending Link 16 capabilities to Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) operations as well as networking the LEO satellite to the ViaSat-3 geostationary (GEO) constellation for a truly global solution..
Viasat also continued to further develop its Hybrid Adaptive Network (HAN) concept, which will be designed to maximize warfighter connectivity, security and resilience by providing simultaneous access to multiple commercial and military networks. With more than 100 HAN demonstrations completed over just the last 120 days of 2019, Viasat successfully proved its ability to assure resilience, advance security and deliver significantly improved levels of connectivity at the tactical edge, Peterman confirmed.
Work included a demonstration to the U.S. Air Force’s AFWERX program as part of the Multi-Domain Operations Challenge in July, which saw Viasat supporting connectivity in integrated operations in the air, space, land, sea, cyber and across the electromagnetic spectrum. Expected to be capable of meshing together LEO, MEO and GEO satellites offering Ku-, Ka- and Mil-Ka frequency bands; multiple ground infrastructure support systems; and multiple, external networks, the HAN is expected to support Line of Sight and BLOS communications as well as real-time network management; visualization and control; real-time active cyber security; cloud-enabled technologies; and real-time situational awareness across multiple end user devices.
The HAN’s end-to-end communications network will be designed to provide government customers with more rapid sensor-to-shooter targeting cycles; reductions in cognitive burdens; as well as predictive analytics to support intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance (ISTAR) missions, force protection; and battlefield medicine.
Peterman added that the HAN will also be supported by the ViaSat-3 constellation. He then said that, ultimately, this all comes down to the warfighter. When the nation’s young men and women put on a uniform and go into the service, the company has an obligation to give them the same kind of technological capabilities that they have grown up dependingd upon — Viasat’s employees are committed to working toward finding a better way for the men and women in uniform everyday — and we don’t plan to slow down anytime soon. (Source: Satnews)
13 Feb 20. Virgin Galactic Welcomes SpaceShip. Two Unity to Spaceport America, New Mexico. Virgin Galactic Captive Carry Test Flight Marks Relocation of Spaceflight Operations to Spaceport America. Virgin Galactic Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SPCE) (“Virgin Galactic” or “the Company”), a vertically integrated aerospace company, has successfully completed another vital step on its path to commercial service, relocating SpaceShipTwo, VSS Unity, to its commercial headquarters at Spaceport America’s Gateway to Space building.
VSS Unity, attached to the carrier aircraft, VMS Eve, made the journey from Mojave, California, where the Company’s manufacturing facilities are based. The vehicle landed at 15.49 MT, where it was greeted by an enthusiastic group of teammates who will operate the spaceship in New Mexico.
This captive carry flight provided an opportunity for engineers to evaluate VSS Unity for over three hours at high altitude and cold temperatures, a longer period of time than is experienced during missions to space. These environmental evaluations of system performance are difficult to replicate at ground level, making captive carry missions a vital component of VSS Unity’s flight test plan.
The flight also provided a valuable opportunity to conduct pilot training and familiarization, with veteran Italian Air Force Test Pilot Nicola ‘Stick’ Pecile joining Chief Pilot Dave ‘Mac’ Mackay in the cockpit of the spaceship for the first time. Nicola is the fifth pilot to complete a flight in VSS Unity. VMS Eve was piloted by Mike ‘Sooch’ Masucci and Frederick ‘CJ’ Sturckow.
The move of the spaceship to Spaceport America marks a key step in the relocation of Virgin Galactic’s to the state of New Mexico. In May 2019, Virgin Galactic announced that as part of this move, approximately 100 teammates would move to New Mexico from Mojave, California, Spaceport America would become operational and the vehicles would be transferred to the Gateway to Space. Today, nearly all of those team members have relocated, the spaceport is operationally ready, and both VMS Eve and VSS Unity have now arrived. Of Virgin Galactic’s total current New Mexico work force, more than 70 team members have been hired locally, the result of a conscious effort to attract New Mexico-based talent.
“New Mexico is going to be the world’s launchpad for commercial spaceflight,” New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said. “Today marks another step closer: We will have a genuine Space Valley in Southern New Mexico, a hotbed of innovation and achievement and space tourism development. I congratulate Virgin Galactic’s workers, George Whitesides and Sir Richard Branson on today’s successful flight – and once again I say to them: Welcome to New Mexico, we’re very glad to have you!”
“When Virgin Galactic started moving to New Mexico last year, everyone felt the sheer magnitude of the task ahead, but we were encouraged and excited by the team’s confidence and strong vision for the future,” said George Whitesides, CEO of Virgin Galactic. “Today we realized the next step in that dream by bringing our beautiful spaceship to New Mexico. We still have significant work ahead, but we are grateful to all our teammates who have made this day a reality.”
The relocation of VSS Unity to Spaceport America enables the Company to engage in the final stages of its flight test program. This will begin with a number of initial captive carry and glide flights from the new operating base in New Mexico, allowing the spaceflight operations team to familiarize themselves with the airspace and ground control. Once these tests are complete, the team will carry out a number of rocket-powered test flights from Spaceport America to continue the evaluation of VSS Unity’s performance. During this phase, the final spaceship cabin and customer experience evaluations will also be concluded in preparation for the start of commercial spaceflight operations.
The Spaceship Company, Virgin Galactic’s design, testing and manufacturing arm, remains firmly rooted in Mojave, California. While VMS Eve and VSS Unity are now based in New Mexico, they will make periodic journeys back to Mojave to support ground and flight tests of new spaceships, as well as for vehicle maintenance and upgrade activities. There is significant progress being made on the next two spaceships, including achieving the Weight on Wheels milestone for the second spaceship and completing over 50% of the structural and system part fabrication for the third spaceship, which were announced in January.
Dan Hicks, Spaceport America’s Executive Director, congratulated the Virgin Galactic team, saying “This truly is the dawn of a new era for the commercial space sector. We are tremendously proud of our foundational partner Virgin Galactic – as we see and support their historic progress in making human space flight a reality for our beautiful world. The New Mexico and Spaceport America leadership will continue our strong support for our visionary Virgin Galactic teammates; and we are looking forward to an exciting 2020!”
12 Feb 20. To Avoid ‘Bureaucratic Inertia’ With Space Force, Department Must ‘Think Differently.’ Just in time for Christmas, President Trump gifted the nation with a new military service: the U.S. Space Force. But ensuring the new service doesn’t become just another bloated government bureaucracy will take a bit of work and planning, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for space policy said.
“The pitfall we have to avoid is submitting to the bureaucratic inertia of the way we have always done things before,” Stephen L. Kitay said during a Feb. 6 breakfast hosted by the Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies in Washington. “This is our opportunity to think differently. It is not only our opportunity, it is our imperative to think differently.”
“Thinking differently” when it comes to the U.S. Space Force, Kitay said, involves embracing originality and joint principals, empowering those who work within the space community and focusing on increased partnerships.
“The joint force in all domains is facing potential threats that challenge our freedom of operation across the strategic environment, making our ability to provide advanced space capabilities to the joint force all the more important,” Kitay said. “To respond effectively to these cross-domain and multi-domain challenges we must extend our culture of joint integration. And to do this well, we must ensure the Space Force is not simply part of an Air Force rebranded, but rather is able to leverage the best of all the services.”
Empowerment, Kitay said, involves ensuring Space Force personnel are not burdened with unnecessary bureaucracy.
“Our space professionals may be a relatively small group of about 15,000 people within the Department of Defense, but I can tell you that their power is mighty,” Kitay said. “As we set up our new organization, we have to ensure we are not creating unnecessary layers of bureaucracy and we have to ensure there is clear alignment of accountability and roles and responsibilities. As we empower, we have to provide clear guidance and enterprise alignment and prudent oversite to enable a culture of speed and innovation.”
Kitay also said thinking differently about Space Force will mean the strengthening of relationships with multiple partners, including interagency colleagues, international allies and partners, and the private sector. He said he’s met with many of these partners.
“The message from all of our allies and partners that I’ve met with is clear and consistent,” he said. “They recognize the importance of space; they are concerned by the growing threats in the domain; and they are ready to work together. It’s fascinating and it opens up tremendous opportunities. We recognize that in any domain we never fight alone, and space must be no different.” (Source: US DoD)
12 Feb 20. On Feb. 3, the U.S. Space Force Space and Missile Systems Center’s (SMC) fifth Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF-5) communications satellite was successfully transferred to Space Operations Command (SpOC). After successful completion of AEHF-5 on-orbit testing, SMC transferred Satellite Control Authority to the SpOC with AEHF-5 now under the control of military operators located at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado. This significant achievement marks the final AEHF-5 milestone and the first transition of a satellite to the warfighter under the United States Space Force.
“This was very much a team effort from our industry partners and dedicated Government professionals, with their focus on mission success this major milestone was accomplished,” said Col John Dukes, senior materiel leader, Space Production Corps’ Geosynchronous Orbit Division. “AEHF satellites play a critical role for the warfighter and the defense of our nation. Space is fundamental to our way of life, our economy relies on space and this reliance will continue to grow.”
Launched on Aug. 8, 2019, aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas-V 551 launch vehicle, AEHF-5 continues to ensure the health of the protected satellite communications constellation and its vital national security mission. AEHF is a joint-Service satellite communications system providing survivable, global, secure, protected and jam-resistant communications for high-priority military ground, sea and air assets. AEHF provides 10 times the throughput with a substantial increase in coverage for users, satisfying the ever-growing need to provide higher rates of data to support the warfighter worldwide.
AEHF provides connectivity across the spectrum of mission areas, including land, air and naval warfare; special operations; strategic nuclear operations; strategic defense; theater missile defense, and space operations and intelligence. AEHF also provides protected satellite communications to our International Partners Canada, United Kingdom, Netherlands and Australia. AEHF is the follow-on to the Milstar system, which augments, improves and expands DOD’s Military Satellite Communications architecture.
The sixth and final AEHF-6 satellite is scheduled to launch next month aboard an Atlas V from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.
11 Feb 20. Space Force to invest in a “Fighting SATCOM” Enterprise in 2021, The Space Force plans to take a new approach to military and commercial satellite communications it’s calling the “Fighting SATCOM” Enterprise, according to its fiscal year 2021 budget request.
The new designation is meant to address a long-standing desire within the military to enable war fighters to seamlessly switch between military and commercial SATCOM, ensuring that they have global connectivity even in environments where one or more signals are denied or degraded.
“In order for the United States to maintain its asymmetric advantage of global space-based communications, the SATCOM enterprise must be prepared to ‘fight SATCOM’ as a single enterprise through a contested, degraded and operationally-limited (CDO) environment, prevent or withstand loss, and continue to deliver effects to war fighters,” Air Force leaders explained in their Space Force budget materials.
The Space Force is seeking $43m in research, development, test & evaluation funding to develop the Fighting SATCOM Enterprise. That’s less than the $49.5m Congress directed to the effort in fiscal year 2019, when it was called COMSATCOM Integration.
That’s not sufficient funding, said Rebecca Cowen-Hirsch, senior vice president of government strategy and policy at Inmarsat Government, a major provider of commercial SATCOM to the military.
“We think at a minimum it needs to be $60m RDT&E,” she said. “But you need to also have procurement to make a full program of record, so you have all colors of money, not just research, test and evaluation money.”
Although Congress directed funding toward COMSATCOM Integration as an independent program element in FY2019, the Space Force RDT&E budget request released Feb. 10 actually transfers it to the Advanced Extremely High Frequency Program’s Space Modernization Initiative. In addition to integrating commercial and military SATCOM, the Space Modernization Initiative will upgrade the existing AEHF system and work to develop new technologies and concepts for a future Protected Anti-Jam Tactical SATCOM (PATS) capability.
That has Cowen-Hirsch concerned, especially because, in her reading, it moves the effort outside the purview of the Commercial SATCOM Program Office, where it resident previously.
“I’m really hoping that the transferral from the COMSATCOM Integration program element is restored back so there is sufficient oversight and transparency on what the government is actually doing with COMSATCOM,” she said. “My concern is that it will be lost.”
Still, there are positives for Cowen-Hirsch, who pointed out that this is the first time the Air Force has singled out commercial SATCOM within a program element.
“The Air Force actually submitting a budget that identifies in an appropriated line commercial SATCOM absent encouragement from Congress is wonderful to see,” said Cowen-Hirsch. “That is an excellent acknowledgment of the obvious dependence on commercial SATCOM for this integrated architecture, for resilient comms. So this is very positive news.”
The enterprise approach Space Force is taking is based in part on the 2019 Wideband Communication Analysis Analysis of Alternatives, which suggested that the military needed a combination of commercial and military owned satellites to meet its SATCOM needs.
Under the Space Modernization Initiative, the Space Force will build a roadmap to the Fighting SATCOM Enterprise that will involve updating all four layers of satellite communications: Space, terminal, network and ground control.
At the ground level, the Space Force will work toward ending the stovepiped status quo where each satellite communications system is built with a unique command and control system. That will be replaced over time with a common ground system with command and control of multiple satellite constellations.
User terminals will also require a major overhaul. Under the Space Modernization Initiative, the Space Force will develop terminal standards for the services that will require terminals to operate over a variety of frequencies, allowing them to operate with a number of different providers simultaneously or with a quick transition. The military wants its war fighters to be able to maintain a network even as they hop across different satellites and providers.
Space Force will also take over the financial management and customer tools used for COMSATCOM from the Defense Information Systems Agency, making Space Force the sole procurement authority. Space Force leaders want a new system of tools for this effort, and according to FY2021 Air Force budget documents, the service plans to award a contract for COMSATCOM Financial and Customer Tools Development and Migration in July 2020.
Utilizing Section 804 authorities, the Space Force plans to develop rapid operational prototype capabilities, starting with a Block 0 contract in FY2021 to achieve initial operating capability for the Fighting SATCOM Enterprise, followed by a Block 1 award in FY2022 that will take a development operations approach.
According to the Air Force, the enterprise approach will improve affordability by ensuring that Space Force “RDT&E investments have utility and portability between Military SATCOM and COMSATCOM requirements.” (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
13 Feb 20. Space Force awards $253.6m contract for protected comms. The Space Force awarded Northrop Grumman a $253.6m contract to develop a payload that would provide a higher level of protection to war fighters relying on satellite communications on the battlefield.
The contract is for the Protected Tactical SATCOM payload, the service announced Feb. 12.
Protected Tactical SATCOM (PTS) is the Space Force’s planned next generation anti-jamming satellite system, which will provide tactical communications for war fighters all over the world — including the polar regions — using the Protected Tactical Waveform. As PTS is developed, the Space Force plans to begin offering Protected Tactical Waveform communications over the Wideband Global SATCOM system and later commercial satellites systems.
The Space Force said in a statement it will award up to four payload development contracts. According to the FY 2021 Space Force budget request, the service is employing a spiral development strategy that will incrementally deploy prototypes progressively demonstrating new anti-jamming technologies. The payloads will be designed to potentially be hosted on other satellites as a cost saving measure.
The contract was awarded through the Space Enterprise Consortium.
“We are excited to partner with Northrop Grumman to enable the rapid development of a protected communications prototype payload,” said Col. Dennis O. Bythewood, program executive officer for the Space and Missile Systems Center’s Development Corps. “The technology maturation and prototyping effort conducted under the SpEC (Space Enterprise Consortium) Other Transaction Agreement will allow SMC to harness the innovation of partnerships between traditional defense and non-traditional/small business contractors with a projected on-orbit capability three years earlier than a traditional acquisition.” (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
11 Feb 20. U.S. Space Force confirms Russia chasing multibillion-dollar U.S. spy satellite. Some analysts and satellite watchers have reported that Russian spacecraft chasing a multibillion-dollar U.S. spy satellite hundreds of miles above the Earth’s surface.
According to media reports in recent weeks, a Russian inspection satellite Cosmos 2542 has recently synchronized its orbit with USA 245 – a satellite the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) operates. The NRO is an agency within the Department of Defense and one of the five major U.S. intelligence agencies.
The commander of U.S. Space Command and chief of the U.S. Space Force Gen. John Raymond confirmed that recent orbital maneuvers by a Russian spacecraft are unacceptable and appeared to be threatening a U.S. national security satellite.
“Last November the Russian government launched a satellite that subsequently released a second satellite. These satellites have been actively maneuvering near a U.S. government satellite … which the Russian government characterized as ‘inspector satellites,’” U.S. General John Raymond said in a statement to CNBC.
One of the satellites, dubbed Cosmos-2542, ejected a sub-satellite, Cosmos-2543. Some analysts and satellite watchers have suggested the sub-satellite “inspector” was chasing USA 245.
CNBC also noted that the Russian spacecraft were as close as 300 kilometers from USA 245, in clear view of the U.S. satellite. Additionally, the two Russian objects were able to see multiple sides of USA 245 due to the nature of their orbits – causing satellite trackers to speculate that Cosmos 2542 and Cosmos 2543 were indeed inspecting USA 245.
The Time reported that the confrontation marks the first time the U.S. military has publicly identified a direct threat to a specific American satellite by an adversary. The incident parallels Russia’s terrestrial encounters with the U.S. and its allies, including close calls between soldiers, fighter jets and warships around the world. Observers worry that space is now offering a new theater for unintentional escalation of hostilities between the long-time adversaries.
What Russia has been doing in space “has the potential to create a dangerous situation,” said Raymond. “These activities don’t reflect the behavior of responsible space faring nations.”
Going forward, he said, “I think there needs to be a discussion on norms of behavior and on responsible behavior in space.” Space fairing nations, Raymond said. “need to have that conversation and I would encourage more dialogue.” (Source: News Now/https://defence-blog.com/)
11 Feb 20. Japan launches another IGS reconnaissance satellite. Japan launched on 9 February an H-IIA rocket carrying an intelligence-gathering satellite from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s (JAXA’s) launch site at the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima Prefecture.
The optical-imaging satellite, called Information Gathering Satellite Optical 7 (IGS Optical 7), joined seven other IGS satellites – two other optical and five radar-imaging ones – designed to enhance Japan’s reconnaissance capabilities amid what Tokyo has described as a “severe” security environment in the region. Tokyo plans to add two more satellites to the constellation. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in June 2018 that his government planned to make maximum use of the satellites to take all possible measures to enhance the country’s security and crisis management. (Source: Jane’s)
11 Feb 20. UK space company launches 35 satellites in one night. UK-based company OneWeb has received £18m ($34.8m) of UK Space Agency funding through the European Space Agency (ESA) for the development and deployment of its next-gen satellite constellation.
This investment also supports the development of novel automation techniques and artificial intelligence to manage the spacecraft and their interaction with terrestrial networks to deliver global 5G connectivity.
The launch, from Baikonur in Kazakhstan, marks the start of one of the largest civilian launch campaigns in history, which aims to create a constellation of 648 satellites.
Catherine Mealing-Jones, director of growth at the UK Space Agency, said, “There is huge commercial potential for a cost-effective worldwide telecoms satellite system, and the UK space sector is playing a leading role in delivering it, building on our world-leading capabilities in satellite telecommunications, connectivity and data. Satellite telecoms are central to bringing fast responsive services to people and communities right across the UK and around the world.”
OneWeb, which has its Global Operations Centre in White City, London, plans to provide its first customer demonstrations by the end of 2020 and full commercial global services for sectors such as maritime, aviation, government and enterprise in 2021.
The UK Space Agency licensed the 34 satellites for launch and regulates the use of space by UK organisations and individuals through the Outer Space Act 1986.
“Responsible growth means that we recognise the importance of protecting the space environment and are the leading investor in ESA’s space safety and security program, which includes a new mission to help remove space debris,” Mealing-Jones added.
This process requires satellite operators to demonstrate they have considered any associated risks and have safeguards in place, such as the ability to manoeuvre satellites to avoid debris and other spacecraft and to de-orbit them at the end of their lifetime.
The UK continues to be a leading member of ESA, which is independent of the EU, having committed a record investment of £374m ($723.3m) per year in November 2019, including £250m ($483.5m) for ESA’s telecommunications program and £80m in the space safety and security program – more than any other ESA member state. The UK space sector employs 42,000 people and generates an income of £14.8bn ($28.6bn) each year, with the value of exports standing at £5.5bn ($10.6bn). (Source: Space Connect)
10 Feb 20. Space Force asks for $15bn in its first budget request. The Space Force is requesting $15.4bn in fiscal 2021 to continue building up the fledgling service and keep its weapons priorities on track.
The request, which is part of the Department of the Air Force’s budget, includes $2.5bn for operations and maintenance, $10.3bn for research and development, and $2.4bn for procurement. Although military personnel funding for the Space Force is kept within the Air Force’s budget in FY21, budget materials stated that about 6,400 military personnel and 3,500 civilians are set to make up the service that year.
“This funding is a critical first step to combat emerging space threats and requirements and transitioning military space operations from combat support to warfighting,” said budget materials that were released Feb. 10.
In the research and development portion of the budget, funding for new missile warning satellites, known as the Next Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared constellation, increased from $1.5 bn in FY20 to $2.3 bn in FY21 — one of the biggest spending hikes in both the Space Force and the Air Force budget requests. The budget materials also noted “significant development in classified programs.”
Meanwhile, other major space R&D programs modestly increased. The Operations Control System program, which is developing the ground control systems linked to new GPS satellites, went from $445m to $482m. Development funding for next-generation rockets shot up from $432 m to $561m, and spending for military GPS user equipment increased from $321m to $391m.
As part of procurement efforts, the Space Force wants to spend $1bn on three national security launches, including those for the final two Space Based Infrared System satellites. It also requested $628m for two next-generation GPS III satellites.
A $77m expenditure in the overseas contingency operations account would fund counterspace operations, the additional development of SBIRS satellites and satellite communications, according to budget materials.
Space Force O&M funding would help fund ongoing efforts to stand up and operate from its headquarters, as well as sustain space assets.
Although military construction spending for the Space Force is kept inside the Air Force’s budget, documents show the Air Force’s $1.4bn request would pay for the completion of a consolidated space operations facility and the mission beddown of a space control facility. (Source: Defense News)
10 Feb 20. Third Lockheed Martin-Built GPS III Satellite Delivered to Cape Canaveral for First U.S. Space Force GPS III Launch in April.
GPS III brings higher-power, more accurate and harder-to-jam signals to the GPS constellation.
The nation’s third next-generation GPS III satellite – and the first delivered by Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) to the new U.S. Space Force — has arrived in Florida for an expected April launch.
On Feb. 5, the third Lockheed Martin-built GPS III space vehicle (GPS III SV03) was shipped to Cape Canaveral from the company’s GPS III Processing Facility near Denver aboard a massive Air Force C-17 aircraft traveling from Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado. In keeping with its tradition of nicknaming satellites after famous explorers, the GPS III team nicknamed GPS III SV03 “Columbus” after the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus.
GPS III SV03 is the latest of up to 32 next-generation GPS III/GPS III Follow-On (GPS IIIF) satellites Lockheed Martin has designed and is building to help the Space Force modernize today’s GPS constellation with new technology and capabilities.
“Every day, more than four billion civil, commercial and military users rely on the Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) services provided by 31 GPS satellites launched since 1997,” said Tonya Ladwig, Lockheed Martin’s Program Manager for GPS III. “We are excited to help the Space Force refresh the constellation to ensure U.S. and allied forces always have the best technology and that the U.S. Global Positioning System remains the gold standard for PNT.”
GPS III is the most powerful and resilient GPS satellite ever put on orbit. Developed with an entirely new design for U.S. and allied forces, GPS III has three times greater accuracy and up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities over any previous GPS satellites in the constellation. GPS III is also the first GPS satellite to broadcast the new L1C civil signal, which is shared by other international global navigation satellite systems, like Galileo, to improve future connectivity worldwide for commercial and civilian users.
GPS III was intentionally designed to evolve with new technology and changing mission needs. The satellite’s evolutionary modular design will allow new “GPS IIIF” capabilities to start being added at the 11th satellite. These will include a fully digital navigation payload, a Regional Military Protection capability, an accuracy-enhancing Laser Retroreflector Array, and a Search & Rescue payload.
Meanwhile, GPS III satellites are beginning to join the constellation. On Jan. 13, 2020, the first Lockheed Martin-built GPS III satellite, GPS III SV01 (“Vespucci”), was set “healthy and active” by the 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2 SOPS) at Schriever Air Force Base, in Colorado. 2 SOPS is now using the GPS III Contingency Operations (COps)-upgraded OCS ground control system to operate both the new GPS III and previously launched GPS satellites.
GPS III SV02 (“Magellan”), launched on Aug. 22, 2019, has completed its on-orbit testing and is currently awaiting its turn for integration into the constellation. GPS III SV03 has now been shipped to the Cape and on Jan. 21, 2020, the Space Force called up GPS III SV04 for a launch later this summer. GPS III SV05-09 are now in various stages of assembly and test at Lockheed Martin’s commercial-like large satellite production line for GPS III satellites near Denver.
The company is expected to soon complete its critical design review with the Space Force to begin production on the first two GPS IIIF satellites under contract.
“It’s an exciting time across the GPS mission as we bring together the best of our space, ground, and operations systems to help the United States Space Force modernize this critical national capability,” commented Johnathon Caldwell, Lockheed Martin’s vice president for Navigation Systems.
09 Feb 20. Iran – Semnan: Failed launch of satellite into space via domestically produced long-range rocket. On 9 February, Iranian state television reported the launch of a satellite with a domestically produced long-range rocket from the Imam Khomeini Space Centre in Semnan Province. However, the domestically produced long-range rocket reportedly failed to put the satellite into orbit. No active NOTAMs appear to have been in place covering space-launch activity from Semnan for FIR Tehran (OIIX) outlining test date/times, altitude restrictions and/or geographic areas affected. Of note, Iran launched 16 short-range ballistic missiles (SRBMs) targeting US military sites in Iraq on 7 January, without issuing NOTAMs in advance. Numerous commercial airlines have suspended flights at various airports in both Iraq and Iran, as well as rerouting others using the airspace over the countries, due to the security situation. Since 8 January, EASA, the US, UK, Germany, France, Canada and Ukraine have all issued new or updated guidance for their respective aviation operators for the airspace of Iran’s FIR Tehran (OIIX) as well as Iraq (FIR Baghdad (ORBB)) (CZIB-2020-01R0; KICZ A0001/20, A0002/20 & A0012/20; EGTT V0005/20 & V0006/20; EDGG B0083/20, B0056/20; LFFF F0100/20; CZYZ G0007/20, G0009/20; UKBV A0068/20).
Iran previously conducted three failed launches in 2019 of satellites into space via domestically produced long-range rockets from the Imam Khomeini Space Centre in Semnan Province, which occurred on 29 August, 6 February and 15 January. The US specifically stated that it views such launches as a violation of UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2231, which requires Iran to refrain from “any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology”. Though Iran claims space lunches incorporating long-range rocket technology are for peaceful purposes only and not a violation of UNSCR 2231, the US believes the activity is a cover for testing ballistic missile components. Osprey analysis indicates that Iran has conducted over 60 missile launches of several classes/types/variants and/or operational missile strikes since the start of 2018, many without appropriate NOTAMs in place for FIR Tehran (OIIX) covering the date/times, altitudes and/or geographic area affected. Additional Iranian tests of different missile classes/types/variants, operational missile strikes along with space-launch rocket vehicle tests from the Imam Khomeini Space Centre are likely during 2020, with a specific flash-point being the next 90 day time-frame. We continue to assess the entirety of Iran to be an EXTREME risk airspace operating environment at all altitude.
Risk area recommendation: Defer all flights subject to an operation specific risk assessment
Approvals: As a precaution, conduct operational risk-based identification of divert and alternate airports for flight schedules with planned stops at aerodromes in the country or with overflight of the airspace. Operators are advised to ensure flight plans are correctly filed, attain proper special approvals for flight operations to sensitive locations and obtain relevant overflight permits prior to departure. In addition, ensure crews scheduled to operate to or over the country in the near term are fully aware of the latest security situation.
Missile Launches: Unannounced rocket and missile launches that transit airspace used by civilian aircraft pose a latent threat to operations at all altitudes. The country has a history of not issuing adequate notice of activities in its airspace that could affect flight safety. Multiple safety of flight concerns emanate from a situation where a missile malfunctions during the boost, mid-course or terminal phases of flight. Such an event would cause the missile to fly an unplanned trajectory and altitude profile which could expose overflying aircraft to mid-air collision, route diversion and or debris splashdown issues. Leading civil aviation governing bodies have standing notices advising operators of the threat to civil aviation in the airspace due to unannounced military activity, rocket test firings and or missile launches.
Aviation Safety: Do not act based on unverified information; however, operators should be flexible in their itineraries and prepared to adjust them due to an increased potential for heightened aviation safety and/or security measures for the airspace and/or airports in the near term resulting from the situation. Aviation safety incidents have the potential to cause follow-on disruption to airport security operations. Review internal and external mechanisms for aviation safety reporting. Any revisions to processes should account for air and ground safety occurrence provisions as part of a wider aviation risk management strategy to protect aircraft, passengers and crew. In addition, ensure emergency response and communications plans are up to date to enhance continuity during times of crisis. (Source: Osprey)
10 Feb 20. NSW, Luxembourg sign space activity co-operation MOU. NSW and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on future space activities. This agreement establishes a framework for co-operation on space-related activities in areas including space science and space policy and law.
The MoU followed the meeting of Luxembourg’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Economy Étienne Schneider and NSW Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres in Sydney last November.
“NSW already excels in mining technology and services, including smart sensor systems, robotics and automation,” Minister Ayres said.
“This MoU will help the state build and deliver on its world-leading research in such areas as space resource utilisation.”
Minister Schneider said, “The co-operation with NSW is yet another driver behind Luxembourg’s ambition to become a European hub for the exploration and use of space resources.
“We are focused on supporting a sustainable ecosystem for the space industry and offering a platform in Europe for commercial space development.”
Luxembourg, a landlocked European nation just slightly bigger than the ACT, is an unlikely but significant space nation. It’s a member of the European Space Agency and home to a number of major players, such as the world’s largest satellite company, SES Global.
The government has made significant efforts to foster a space industry, even establishing the legal framework for companies seeking to conduct asteroid mining.
The Luxembourg space sector’s contribution to the nation’s GDP is among the highest in Europe.
NSW is home to significant parts of Australia’s space industry, encompassing a broad range of space capabilities.
It undertakes major research into applying its successful technical fields to the exploration, exploitation and utilisation of space resources.
The MOU places particular emphasis on exploration and sustainable utilisation of space resources and the desire to foster a sustainable use of space and its resources.
This agreement enables a mutually beneficial exchange of ideas and personnel as well as the exploration of commercial possibilities.
Potential areas of space science collaboration include technology and applications such as high-tech instrumentation, ground communications and services, smart payloads development, space and intra-space communications and commercialisation of space data. (Source: Space Connect)
07 Feb 20. Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne To Fly DoD Sats By Year End.
“I want to see a kickass flight, really really soon!” says Mandy Vaughn, president of VOX Space, about her 2020 goals for Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne.
Pieces of six different rockets in various phases of manufacture are spread out over the 180,000 square foot floor at the Virgin Orbit factory here, as the company prepares for the first flight of its air-launched LauncherOne space vehicle. That flight is expected “within weeks, not months,” says Mandy Vaughn, president of the firm’s US unit VOX Space, established in 2017.
Vaughn drove up from her office in El Segundo yesterday to give me a tour of the five-year old facility. It’s a bright and airy space, including a small cafeteria with furniture in Virgin’s signature red and white — fitting for Virgin’s ebullient founder Sir Richard Branson. The facility hosts clean rooms, a specialized 3D printer, typical assembly spaces, and several ginormous racks, including one that Vaughn compared to a set from Cirque de Soleil that is used for testing rocket stage separation.
LauncherOne’s first flight has been longer in coming that Virgin Orbit had hoped — it was originally planned for last year — but Vaughn is clearly pumped about where things are now.
“We’re about to embark on some fun stuff,” she said, with LauncherOne currently undergoing preliminary tests at Virgin’s launch site in the Mojave Desert. (I was invited to go out to watch some of the testing, but unfortunately couldn’t fit it in during this trip to see the Minuteman III’s first 2020 launch on Wednesday.)
While loathe to publicly give hard dates, Vaughn said the goal is for the maiden voyage of LauncherOne to happen early this spring. “I want to see a kickass flight,” she said, “really really soon!”
From then, the plan is to move out rapidly with a launch for NASA of a group of tiny Cubesats mid-year, and Virgin’s first satellite launch for DoD by the end of the year. Vaughn said she is looking to accomplish four to six flights this year. The idea is to establish as of the end of 2020 a regular cadence of routine launches, she said.
The Naval Strike Missile is a long-range, precision strike weapon that seeks and destroys enemy ships at distances greater than 100 nautical miles.
As Breaking D readers may remember, Virgin Orbit garnered its first Air Force contract back in 2017 via the Air Forces Defense Innovation Unit (then known as DIUx for Experimental.) The $4.8m contract, using Other Transaction Authority (OTA) money that allows the Air Force flexibility to work with non-traditional vendors, involves launching what Vaughn called a “mishmash of Cubesats” fora few different DoD organizations.
The launch manifest is organized by DoD’s Space Test Program (STP), managed by Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) headquartered in El Segundo. STP has been around for decades, working to orbit Army, Navy and Air Force space experiments that are chosen by the DoD Space Experiments Review Board (SERB) — and up to now, chaired by the head of Air Force acquisition, Will Roper. However, now that SMC is officially a part of the new Space Force, it is likely that the SERB’s chairmanship will shift to the new Air Force assistant secretary for Space Acquisition and Integration once that office has stood up –– sometime before the October 2022 deadline mandated by the 2020 National Defense Acquisition Act.
Virgin’s DoD launch will take place from Anderson AFB in Guam, a location the company chose specifically with US military launches in mind.
LauncherOne stands 70 feet tall, although it looks tiny when fixed underneath its carrier aircraft, the Cosmic Girl, a modified 747-400. It can carry a payload of 300 kilograms to 500 kilometers in a sun synchronous orbit, and 500 kilos to equatorial orbit. It can launch from any commercial or DoD runway sufficient for a 747 launch.
While in its current configuration, Cosmic Girl is essentially a passenger aircraft, Vaughn said she’d like to see a cargo variant in future. Not only could an aircraft with a hardened floor and a wider cargo bay door enable LauncherOne to be self sufficient in that all its support structures could be carried on the same aircraft, she explained, it also would allow the possibility for the plane to carry other types of payloads for the US or allied militaries.
VOX is responsible for US government sales, as well as sales of launch services to the other Five Eyes allies: Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, Vaughn said. Virgin Orbit deals directly with other US allies such as Japan and Israel.
Indeed, Virgin Orbit on Jan. 28 announced a new agreement with Israeli firm ImageSat International (ISI), which manufactures high-resolution, small imagery sats, “to develop an end-to-end responsive space service offering focused on national security customers.” (Source: Breaking Defense.com)
07 Feb 20. Space Force Making Measured Efforts in Absorbing New Personnel. As it stands now, the new U.S. Space Force has one member: its commander, Space Force Gen. John W. Raymond. But there will be more — enlisted, commissioned officers and civilian members will be part of the new force before the end of the year. Those who are currently assigned to, but aren’t members of the Space Force say bringing aboard new personnel will take some time to get right.
“The commissioning and enlistment and appointment of officers and enlisted members of a military service, much of that is controlled by law, statute and Congress,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. David D. Thompson, vice commander of U.S. Space Force, during a Feb. 5 discussion at the Pentagon. “That’s the first part. We need to go through a process with Congress to have them authorize, provide authorization for specific names and specific individuals to transfer into that service. And we are working with Congress on that right now, and that will take a little bit of time.”
Thompson also said that, similar to the other military services, those who commission or enlist have expectations regarding benefits, pay and other things. Those details haven’t yet been worked out for the Space Force, he said, but they have to be in place before new members can come aboard.
“The last thing we want to have happen as we go through this process with excitement and enthusiasm and people are happy, … but then they don’t get paid.”
Air Force Maj. Gen. Clint E. Crosier, director of the U.S. Space Force planning office, explained in more detail the significance of transferring from an existing service into the new service.
“We want to be very deliberate about the transfer process,” Crosier said. “The transfer piece involves raising your right hand — because, literally, our enlisted members are terminating their enlistment in the U.S. Air Force or Army or Navy and enlisting in the Space Force. And our officers are resigning their commissions. That’s a very formal process.
Changes regarding financial management, personnel systems and even the Uniform Code of Military Justice will all need to be addressed before new members can come aboard, he said, so that when people formally leave their prior service and come into the Space Force, everything is ready for them and it’s a smooth transition.
Eventually, the Space Force will recruit new members directly from the civilian world. But initially, Crosier said, Space Force will fill its ranks with personnel who transfer in from the Air Force, the Army or the Navy. That mix of cultures will mean the new service will need a plan to ensure that personnel coming in are treated equally, he noted.
“You can imagine then — fast forward to a time in the future where I hold my first promotion board and I have ex-naval officers and ex-Army officers and ex-Air Force officers all meeting a common promotion board and ensuring I have fair and equitable way to run that board so that everybody has a fair chance of getting promoted,” Crosier said.
Air Force personnel will be the first to transfer into the Space Force in fiscal years 2020 and 2021. Thompson said all of the Air Force’s space operations capabilities will transfer into the Space Force. Ultimately, officers and enlisted personnel currently involved in things such as space operations, space intelligence, space acquisition, space engineering, space communications and space cyber may transfer into the Space Force.
After that, Crosier said, the new service will do the planning to account for the different cultures, different promotions processes and different training processes that incoming personnel from the other services are familiar with.
“So that when we are ready to ask Army and Navy folks to raise their right hand and transfer, that we have got all those pieces in place,” Crosier said.
One thing unknown now, Thompson said, is what members of the Space Force will be called. Already, the U.S. military has soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines. But Space Force has yet to decide what it will call its own personnel.
“We are taking steps to broaden our aperture and bring in a larger set of groups,” Thompson said. The Space Force is looking to Defense Language Institute, the language department at the Air Force Academy, and other English and language centers, as well as to its own people, to come up with the best possible suggestions for names, he added.
The service has “a couple of really strong options on what we might be called, and some pretty strong opinions,” Thompson said. “But what we would like to do is ensure we’ve thought as broadly as we can, gotten the opinions of the people who matter … and considered as best as we can what that ought to be, before we land on an answer.” (Source: US DoD)
06 Feb 20. A milestone for the Air Force’s experimental navigation satellite. An experimental Air Force navigation satellite has passed its preliminary design review, continuing a path to launch in 2022, the program’s primary contractor L3Harris Technologies announced Feb. 5.
Navigation Technology Satellite 3 (NTS-3) is a major vanguard program being developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Space and Missile Systems Center to demonstrate new positioning, navigation and timing technologies that will inform how future GPS satellites work.
“The NTS-3 vanguard is an experimental, end-to-end demonstration of agile, resilient space-based positioning, navigation, and timing,” said Arlen Biersgreen, Air Force NTS-3 Program Manager. “It has the potential for game-changing advancements to the way the Air Force provides these critical capabilities to warfighters across the Department of Defense. The commitment demonstrated by United States Space Force to partner with AFRL and support technology transition was a key element in NTS-3 being designated as an Air Force vanguard in September 2019.”
Due to how far in advance satellite acquisitions are planned out, the technologies on board NTS-3 likely won’t make its way onto the current batch of 10 GPS III satellites, two of which are already on orbit. However, the technologies could inform the design and development of the GPS IIIF satellites, which will follow the fleet of GPS III satellites in the late 2020s. Lockheed Martin is the primary contractor for the Air Force on the GPS III program. L3Harris provides the payload on those satellites.
And unlike other experimental satellites, NTS-3 could have an immediate benefit for the war fighter. Once in geostationary orbit, NTS-3 will actually augment the GPS constellation. Because other GPS satellites are constantly moving in medium earth orbit, NTS-3 will provide a unique, geographically focused PNT signal.
L3Harris was awarded an $84m contract through the Space Enterprise Consortium in 2018 to be the prime system integrator for NTS-3.
The experimental satellite is on an aggressive development schedule, with plans to have it on orbit within 40 months of the time it was put under contract.
“We have moved from contract award to finishing an early design review in under one year, which is an amazing accomplishment for a satellite development program that normally takes twice that amount of time,” said Ed Zoiss, president of Space and Airborne Systems at L3Harris. “We have proven we can move quickly to support the Air Force’s go-fast mission requirements.” (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
03 Feb 20. Intelsat’s Intelsat 40e Satellite to be Built by Maxar. Intelsat (NYSE: I) has selected Maxar Technologies (NYSE:MAXR) (TSX:MAXR) to manufacture Intelsat 40e, a next-generation, geostationary, communications satellite scheduled to launch in 2022 — Maxar will integrate NASA’s Tropospheric Emissions: Monitoring of Pollution (TEMPO) payload with the Intelsat 40e satellite.
Based on Maxar’s proven 1300-class satellite platform and Intelsat Epic, Intelsat 40e will provide Intelsat customers across North and Central America with flexible, high-throughput, “coast-to-coast” coverage. The additional capacity will also support the growing number of customers using Intelsat managed-service offerings, including those working with Intelsat to solve connectivity challenges for commercial and private planes, moving vehicles on land and other mobility applications.
In 2019, NASA selected Maxar to host its TEMPO payload using the Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) Hosted Payload Solutions (HoPS) contract vehicle. Now that Maxar has identified Intelsat 40e as the satellite, the company will begin the integration process.
TEMPO is a UV-visible spectrometer that will detect pollutants by measuring sunlight reflected and scattered from the Earth’s surface and atmosphere. The resulting data from TEMPO will be used to enhance air-quality forecasts in North America, enabling the more effective early public warning of pollution incidents.
The combined Intelsat 40e and TEMPO programs are expected to be accretive to Maxar’s earnings and cash flow on an annual basis throughout the production process.
Intelsat CEO, Stephen Spengler, said that when this satellite is launched, Intelsat 40e will be the newest addition to the company’s next-generation Intelsat Epic platform, which is already providing global customers with flexible, high-performance connectivity they can count on today – and in the future. Intelsat continuously invests in innovative new satellite and hybrid technologies that make it easy and affordable for our customers to connect people, devices and networks, even in the most remote locations.
Maxar CEO, Dan Jablonsky, added that Maxar and Intelsat have a strategic partnership that goes back more than 40 years and the company is honored to have been selected for Intelsat 40e – the 54th satellite that Maxar will build for Intelsat over the course of the long and successful history together. Maxar is also honored to have collaborated with NASA for more than 50 years and the firm is excited to leverage the company’s strong legacy in bridging commercial and government needs to integrate the agency’s TEMPO payload with Intelsat 40e. Maxar’s recent work with NASA on TEMPO and several other Space Infrastructure missions demonstrate positive momentum for this expanding civil space portfolio. (Source: Satnews)
05 Feb 20. C-COM’s Transportable Antenna System Successfully Completes Telesat Phase 1 LEO Satellite Testing. C-COM Satellite Systems Inc. (TSXV: CMI; OTC: CYFNS) has completed their first live test of a low-cost, commercially available, 74 cm. parabolic, flyaway antenna system, with Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite.
C-COM’s fully automatic, highly compact, and easy to deploy iNetVu® FLY-74 Ka-band transportable antenna was used during the live testing at Telesat’s Allan Park facility in Ontario, Canada.
The iNetVu® FLY-74 has been tracking Telesat’s Phase 1 LEO satellite over a six-month period. Full-duplex throughput data rates of up to 158 Mbps on the downlink and 158 Mbps on the uplink were achieved at extremely high spectral efficiencies, all while demonstrating the ultra-low latency capabilities (20-40 msec) of Telesat LEO.
The on-air tests were conducted using a Newtec MDM 6000 modem. The FLY-74 antenna acquired and tracked the LEO satellite at elevation angles as low as 10 degrees above the horizon.
Bilal Awada, CTO at C-COM, said the company is very pleased with the performance and high reliability of the FLY-74 antenna system and its ability to track and maintain connectivity with the Telesat LEO satellite. A number of these flyaway antenna systems have already been deployed for tracking low orbit satellites, such as cubesats and smallsats, in Canada and in other parts of the world.
Michel Forest, Director, LEO Systems Engineering at C-COM, added that Telesat is working with high technology vendors such as C-COM to assure the availability of affordable antenna systems for Telesat LEO across a variety of applications. C-COM’s advanced antenna technology will enable Telesat’s customers to take full advantage of Telesat LEO’s capabilities, including high capacity and ultra-low latency. (Source: Satnews)
06 Feb 20. The Olympus Line of SSPAs Introduced by Advantech Wireless Technologies. New from Advantech Wireless Technologies are the firm’s ‘Olympus’ Line of high power Solid State Power Amplifier systems — these terminals are installation-ready, tested and shipped on a one-piece, welded mounting-frame.
Delivered as factory-integrated systems up to 1.8kW in C-, X- or Ku-band, the Olympus systems are based on Advantech SapphireBlu Series high-power SSPAs and are designed for high-modulation, single and multi-carrier uplink applications.
The four terminal types include redundant and phase-combined-redundant system configurations, designed to deliver the highest level of RF output-power in a neatly packaged assembly.
- Type-1: One on-line Amplifier with dedicated back-up (Single Pol)
- Type-2: Two on-line amplifiers phase-combined (Single-Pol)
- Type-3: Two on-line amplifiers with dedicated back-up (Dual-Pol)
- Type-4: Two on-line amplifiers phase-combined with dedicated back-up (Single Pol)
Tony Radford, VP Global Sales at Advantech Wireless Technologies, said that the company has a legacy of producing the highest power SATCOM SSPAs in the industry. In order to facilitate the increasing demand for high-power, the company has created a number of factory-integrated ‘packages’ to help expedite both the sales and production processes. (Source: Satnews)
At Viasat, we’re driven to connect every warfighter, platform, and node on the battlefield. As a global communications company, we power millions of fast, resilient connections for military forces around the world – connections that have the capacity to revolutionize the mission – in the air, on the ground, and at sea. Our customers depend on us for connectivity that brings greater operational capabilities, whether we’re securing the U.S. Government’s networks, delivering satellite and wireless communications to the remote edges of the battlefield, or providing senior leaders with the ability to perform mission-critical communications while in flight. We’re a team of fearless innovators, driven to redefine what’s possible. And we’re not done – we’re just beginning.