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October 19, 2006
New, Multi-Mode Tactical Terminals Tested at Fort Huachuca
Collaboration of General Dynamics and Raytheon Put Reliable Troposcatter/SATCOM Capability at 'the Tip of the Spear'
General Dynamics C4 Systems in collaboration with Raytheon Network Centric Systems has developed an innovative multi-mode tactical terminal that allows communication via satellite (using C-, X-, Ku-or Ka-Band) or via troposcatter (and/or diffraction or line of sight) in highly transportable, self-contained, field-configurable packages. The terminals incorporate modern, industry-leading carbon fiber, truck/trailer-mount or "fly-away" antenna systems to suit a variety of applications.
Roger Wieting, General Manager of Projects and Technical Services for General Dynamics C4 Systems SATCOM Technologies, said, "The new multi-mode terminals produced in collaboration with Raytheon's Network Centric Systems are quickly deployable and can be used for reliable, high-speed troposcatter and SATCOM communication."
The terminals were recently tested at Fort Huachuca for Joint Interoperability Test Command (JITC) certification, in coordination with the PM-Kuwait Iraq C4 Commercialization (KICC) office.
In order to 'prove out' the terminal's capabilities, both troposcatter links and diffraction links were used in testing over surrounding mountain ranges. The average beyond-line-of-site distance was approximately 70 miles. Data rates of 20 Mbps were achieved in quad diversity, with IP-quality bit error rates. Capability to transmit an impressive 40 Mbps using dual diversity was also demonstrated over the same link.
Twenty-four hour testing, as well as operation and control of the terminal was tested in the field.
David Hegarty, Business Manager at Raytheon SATCOM, said, "Besides the impressive data rates demonstrated at Fort Huachuca, the ease of the system's set-up and operation was very apparent in the field. This, combined with the small footprint and light weight of the terminal, offers a tremendous logistical advantage for the war fighter."
Raytheon's Director, SATCOM Programs, Fred Darlington, added, "Besides low cost and additional connectivity, we are making high bandwidth troposcatter easier to use than satellite communications. These properties truly put network centric capability in units battalion sized and smaller, units often referred to as 'the tip of the spear'."