Air Force

November 27, 2013

Northrop’s BACN completes 5,000 combat missions

The Battlefield Airborne Communications Node, developed by Northrop Grumman for the U.S. Air Force, has completed 5,000 combat missions connecting war fighters in the air and on the ground.

BACN is a high-altitude, airborne gateway that translates and distributes voice communications, video, imagery and other battlespace information from numerous sources. Using a suite of computers and radio systems, BACN bridges and extends communications among disparate users and different datalink networks to provide situational awareness and enable better command and control coordination between war fighters and commanders.

The BACN fleet comprises four E-11A manned systems and three Northrop Grumman EQ-4B Block 20 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft systems. BACN supports missions executed by the 430th Expeditionary Electronic Combat Squadron at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan, and by the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing in Southwest Asia. Together, the 430th and the 380th reached the 5,000 combat mission milestone Nov. 9, 2013.

“Initially deployed by Northrop Grumman to satisfy a joint urgent operational need, BACN is now a key enabler of surface and airborne missions theaterwide,” said Mike Twyman, sector vice president and general manager of the Defense Systems division for Northrop Grumman Information Systems. “BACN’s continuous mission availability, quick reaction capability and flexibility have made it a real game changer in theater.”

The persistent connectivity BACN provides is used to successfully execute a number of missions, including airdrops and overall air operations. The system’s beyond-line-of-sight capability has been particularly useful overcoming the communications limitations posed by Afghanistan’s rugged terrain.

“We constantly get feedback from theater telling us how important BACN is for their missions,” said Maj. William Holl, the Air Force BACN program manager at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass. “Without BACN, ground forces would have to rely on much slower satellite communications – and a few seconds can make all the difference when you are under fire.”

BACN achieved another major milestone on Aug. 11, 2013, completing 50,000 combat flight hours of service.

Northrop Grumman is the prime contractor for developing, deploying, operating and sustaining BACN in support of U.S. Central Command. Northrop Grumman maintains the BACN E-11A aircraft platforms; the U.S. Air Force maintains the EQ-4B Global Hawk platforms.

Northrop Grumman was awarded the first BACN contract in April 2005 by the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (previously the Air Force Electronics Systems Center), Hanscom Air Force Base.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
courtesy-photo

Program ALIS initiated

No, it isn’t the Program Alice from the “Resident Evil” movies. It is the Autonomic Logistics Information Systems, also known as ALIS, which enables F-35 Lightning II operators to plan ahead to maintain and sustain its sy...
 
 

Air Force News – September 12, 2014

Germany Air Mobility Command’s mission is to provide rapid, global mobility and sustainment for America’s armed forces, a capability demonstrated during Steadfast Javelin II, a large-scale, joint multinational exercise held Aug. 31 through Thursday on Ramstein Air Base. Mauritania Six African nations participated in a week-long group intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance planning ex...
 
 

People First – September 12, 2014

Editor’s Note: The “People First” section is compiled from information from the Air Force Personnel Center, TRICARE, 56th Force Support Squadron, Airman and Family Readiness Flight, Veterans Affairs, the civilian personnel office and armed forces news services. For the complete story, click on the link in each header. CMSAF discusses enlisted evaluation changes Chief Master...
 

 

Tuition assistance program changes Oct. 1

Effective Oct. 1, new changes will go into effect that impact the Air Force Tuition Assistance Program. Personnel using the TA program will now be required to pass all undergraduate courses with a grade of “C” or higher. A grade of “D” will be considered a failing grade and members who do not meet the...
 
 
Senior Airmen Grace Lee

Airmen help pilots survive in wilderness

Senior Airmen Grace Lee Airman 1st Class Chris Long, 56th Operations Support Squadron Aircrew Flight Equipment journeyman, conducts a built-in test for the URT-44 personnel locator beacon, which is part of the survival kit that...
 
 
Courtesy photo

Close call in AOR didn’t discourage Airman

Courtesy photo Senior Airman Alten Hayes poses for a photo during his deployment to Kandahar, Afghanistan. A rocket landed 60 feet away from his position but did not activate. This Indiana native wanted to be part of something ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin