Space

June 25, 2014

AEHF-3 protected communications payload, built by Northrop Grumman, completes on orbit testing ahead of schedule

REDONDO BEACH, Calif.†- The protected communications payload built by Northrop Grumman for the U.S. Air Force’s third Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite has completed on orbit testing ahead of schedule without any discrepancies, matching the high performance levels of others the company has provided.

Launched Sept. 18, 2013, aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket, AEHF-3 reached its final position in geostationary orbit in January 2014. The payload began transmitting as planned when it was activated for the first time at that point, said Stuart Linsky, vice president, communication programs, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems.

An extensive series of on-orbit payload tests that followed was successfully completed in February. The Air Force said its 4 th Space Operations Squadron at Schriever Air Force Base, Colo., took over satellite operations in March from the Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles.

As a result, AEHF-3 has been integrated in a constellation of satellites forming a “ring of protection” around the Earth that provides the only global, highly secure, protected, survivable communications for warfighters operating on ground, sea and air platforms.

The constellation now includes five Milstar and three AEHF satellites, all communicating with each other via satellite-to-satellite crosslinks ñ a capability exclusive to Milstar and AEHF within the MILSATCOM enterprise. Northrop Grumman has provided all payloads for AEHF satellites to the prime contractor, Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Sunnyvale, Calif.

“The AEHF-3 payload turned in a stellar performance throughout on orbit testing,” Linsky said. “With the third AEHF satellite seamlessly integrated into the ‘ring of protection,’ the Northrop Grumman-built crosslinks demonstrated a new first ó operations at extended data rates [XDR] on both sides of an AEHF satellite. That wasn’t possible with only two AEHF satellites on orbit.”

Testing involved establishing communications networks between combinations of EHF terminals on the ground that use Milstar’s medium data rates and other terminals equipped to handle the wideband AEHF XDR. They exercised and further proved payload software that configures worldwide networks, Linsky noted.

“The payload’s software-based communication network architecture allows us the unprecedented ability to reconfigure assets as needed for an evolving battlefield,” Linsky said. “This software-based architecture has enabled Northrop Grumman to deliver new capabilities our leaders and warfighters requested through the Milstar constellation for all 20 years since the launch of the first Milstar in February 1994.”

Advanced EHF satellite payloads uniquely contain a full range of features that provide effective protection against the wide range of threats from capable adversaries. These features include anti-jamming for the strongest jammers, low probability of detection and intercept, rapid recovery during a nuclear event, the ability to operate through scintillation, greatly reduced risk from physical attack to ground systems, and significant protection from cyber attack.




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


 
 

 

President proclaims Memorial Day as ‘Day of Prayer’

President Barack Obama May 22 saluted the service and sacrifices of America’s military members–past and present–and proclaimed Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, “as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11 a.m. of that day as a time during which people may unite in prayer....
 
 

Air Force leaders’ Memorial Day message

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III send the following Memorial Day message to the Airmen of the Air Force and their families: To the Airmen of the United States Air Force and their Families: On Memorial Day, Americans pause in solemn remembrance...
 
 

Headlines May 22, 2015

News: Second Marine killed in Hawaii Osprey crash identified - Marine Corps officials have identified the second Marine to die as a result of the May 17 MV-22B Osprey crash as Lance Cpl. Matthew J. Determan of Maricopa, Ariz.   Business: Israel defense exports plunge to seven-year low - Israeli defense sales last year plunged to their...
 

 

News Briefs May 22, 2015

Ukrainian officer hit with third charge in Russia A third charge has been filed against a Ukrainian military officer who has been behind bars in Moscow for nearly a year over the deaths of two Russian journalists in Ukraine. Nadezhda Savchenko, who worked as a spotter for Ukrainian troops fighting separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine,...
 
 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 




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>