Business

December 13, 2013

Northrop Grumman reinvents satellite communications for aircraft

Northrop Grumman’s newly developed SATCOM system flies aboard the Firebird demonstrator aircraft during a recent demonstration.

MOJAVE, Calif. – In one year, Northrop Grumman took a satellite communications system normally used in space and transformed it into a high-functioning, low-cost communications system that can be used on aircraft.

The satellite communications system was successfully demonstrated on board the company’s Firebird demonstrator aircraft. Until now, no small communications system has been able to send sensor data to a satellite and back to a ground station at such a high rate of transfer.

“It’s a game changer for those that need high-quality, real-time data, but don’t want to – or can’t – have a large, heavy communications system onboard,” said Brett Amidon, director of Technology Development at Northrop Grumman’s Aerospace Systems. “Our system provides beyond line of sight capabilities in a compact, lightweight, low-profile package.”

During the demonstration, the SATCOM system rapidly provided full-motion video to the ground. For demo purposes, the system and associated test equipment were housed within a pylon-mounted structure attached to the top of the Firebird fuselage.

The system’s small size saves a great deal of space, allowing more sensor payloads and equipment to be carried by the aircraft.

Northrop Grumman developed the SATCOM system using Gallium Nitride technology, which first gained attention as the source of brightly colored LED lights. GaN allows for high communications output while using very little physical space.




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


 
 

 

Headlines January 30, 2015

News: Taliban claims responsibility for attack on Americans at military base near airport - The Taliban claimed responsibility Jan. 30 for a shooting incident at a military base attached to Kabul’s international airport yesterday that killed three American civilian contractors and an Afghan national, saying the attacker had infiltrated the ranks of the security forces. Commission...
 
 

News Briefs January 30, 2015

Military judge weighs restrictions on Gitmo female guards A military judge is deciding whether to continue restricting the use of female guards at Guantanamo. Navy Capt. J. Kirk Waits heard closing arguments Jan. 29 at the base in Cuba during a pretrial hearing for Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi. Waits didn’t say when he will rule. Hadi...
 
 
Air Force photograph by 1st Lt. Jake Bailey

Cope South experts exchange knowledge, techniques

Air Force photograph by 1st Lt. Jake Bailey TSgt. Sam Bishop, center left, and SSgt. Jeffrey Stephens discuss propeller maintenance with Bangladesh air force maintainers, from the 101st Special Flying Unit, during exercise Cope...
 

 

Air Force names 2-star to lead F-35 Integration Office

With the initial operating capability date of the F-35 Lightning II quickly approaching, the Air Force appointed Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Harrigian as the director of a larger Air Force F-35 Integration Office, Feb. 1. In addition to gaining new leadership, the F-35 Integration Office will also grow from a staff of four to 12 and...
 
 
boeing-ana2

Boeing announces ANA’s commitment to more jetliners

Airline continues fleet modernization with Boeing airplanes Boeing and All Nippon Airways announced Jan. 30 the airline’s intent to purchase three 787-10 Dreamliners to add additional flexibility to the airline’s 787 fleet....
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

Air Force risks becoming too small to succeed under sequestration

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee Jan. 28, 2015, in Washington, D.C., as Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Joesph F. Dunf...
 




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>