Industry News

News From Washington

News From Washington

Rockwell Collins Develops Ad-Hoc Network for US Military

Rockwell Collins, a leader in tactical communications, is developing an advanced communication network with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) called Tactical Targeting Network Technology (TTNT).

TTNT is a high speed, dynamic ad-hoc network designed to assist the US military in creating a rapid retargeting capability that will be critical across vital military operations. This network is intended to support more than 200 users for secure jam-resistant transmission at Internet speeds, and to allow reception of four or more receive streams simultaneously. It is under development primarily for the US Air Force Research Labs and DARPA. Rockwell Collins has been awarded $22.1 M for Phase 3 of the program, which includes a multi-platform prototype demonstration of TTNT. In 2001, Rockwell Collins was awarded Phase 1 of the program, valued at $1.5 M. This phase included the development of TTNT requirements and a preliminary design of the technology. Phase 2, valued at $6.5 M, includes a complete hardware design, full-scale network simulation and an air-to-ground demonstration that verifies the ability to transmit data over 100 nautical miles. During Phase 3, 20 prototype terminals will demonstrate and validate the Phase 2 ad-hoc network simulations. TTNT's network formation is simple, with automatic network organization and key exchanges performed anytime, even enroute. Additionally, the secure, Internet Protocol-capable tactical network coexists with fielded technologies including Link 16, and is interoperable with the Wideband Networking Waveform (WNW) at the base band network layer. This high speed network enables net-centric sensor technologies to correlate data among multiple platforms by precisely geo-locating time critical targets.

Harris Delivers Next-generation Multi-band Satellite Terminals

Harris Corp., a world leader in multi-band satellite communications (SATCOM) terminals for the US Department of Defense, announced that it has delivered 13 of the first 28 transit case-configured Lightweight Multi-band Satellite Terminals (LMST) to the US Marine Corps. The highly mobile LMST ground terminals provide deployed military forces with reach-back to headquarters operations as well as satellite-based voice, video and data communications connectivity within the battlefield.

Under the terms of the contract, Harris is responsible for program management, training, depot support and production for the LMST Block 5 ground terminal program. The terminals provide military X- and Ka-band satellite-based voice, video and data communications. Through Block 5 enhancements such as a six-spoke hub with a reach-back capability, LMST now offers significantly greater capability and flexibility than previous generations of the terminals, as well as six times the number of communications links and double the bandwidth capacity. LMST is designed to be modular and configurable for various missions, such as humanitarian, disaster relief and regional conflicts.

Lockheed Martin Develops Missile Tracking Antenna for US Navy

Lockheed Martin has developed an innovative and cost-effective antenna system for tracking test flights of the US Navy's Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missile. The system, called S-band Mobile Array Telemetry (SMART), was developed, tested and deployed under a series of successive contracts with the US Navy Strategic Systems Programs (SSP) to develop the affordable, mobile telemetry data acquisition system. SMART can be deployed aboard any of five test range support ships-of-opportunity, thus minimizing the need to use telemetry aircraft which have been the primary means for flight data acquisition during the Navy's on-going operational evaluation tests of the Trident II D5 Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile strategic weapon system.

The SMART system was successfully field-tested in the South Atlantic Ocean during two separate Trident II D5 test flight operations in 2002 and has been turned over to the US Navy for operational use. The system, which can also be adapted to meet other missile testing telemetry needs, is projected to save the Navy more than $2 M annually in telemetry aircraft operation and support costs. The SMART antenna system was developed by a team led by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Sunnyvale, CA, and included engineering experts from the company's Advanced Technology Center in Palo Alto, CA, and sister company Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems and Sensors (MS2)-Perry Technologies in Syracuse, NY. The team was formed to engineer a shipboard antenna system to acquire, receive and record telemetry data from the Trident II D5 missile during test flights, and after completing a six-month initial concept evaluation, a phased array telemetry system was selected to meet the large field-of-view requirement and to avoid the need to compensate for ship motion (roll and pitch). The SMART antenna system employs a large aperture, highly integrated, active, phased array S-band telemetry antenna; operates over the range 2200 to 2400 MHz; is capable of seeking out 1100 nautical miles; and generates sufficient beams to track eight independent targets. The system has no moving parts. It is electronically steered over a field-of-view of 120 degrees in azimuth and 80 degrees in elevation in order to overcome the ship's motion and eliminate the need for a gyro stabilization system. It can search the entire volume (field-of-view) in less than one second. The highly integrated sub-array design, which uses multi-layer microwave boards, reduces total cable and connector count by 70 percent over a typical antenna system. The benefits of this design are higher reliability, lighter weight and more compactness. Additionally, because the system is based on COTS components, low cost PC board manufacturing and surface-mount technology (SMT), it has an extremely low production cost-per-square-foot relative to all other active phased array antenna systems (lower by a factor of five). The SMART antenna system receiving, recording and control equipment is housed in a standard 8 ´ 20-foot International Organization for Standardization (ISO) van. This equipment is all COTS instrumentation and is configured in a modular architecture to allow for easy maintenance and technology refreshment.

Navy and Industry Team Demonstrate Strike Warfare Architecture

The US Navy and an industry team that includes Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems and Raytheon recently completed the successful demonstration of the Enterprise Expeditionary Strike Warfare Architecture (eESWA), an advanced targeting and strike capability that will drive the requirements for network-centric strike systems of the future. The experimental demo showcases how a horizontally integrated, web-enabled capability can dramatically accelerate the sensor-to-shooter cycle from several hours to single-digit minutes. The initial eESWA demonstration, held in July at the Precision Engagement Center at China Lake, CA, brought together for the first time an integrated, open architecture for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), time-critical targeting and strike mission planning and execution. The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) Mission Planning and Tomahawk Command and Control Directorate led the effort and each member of the industry team supplied leading edge technologies for the purpose of demonstrating proof-of-concept operations. The demonstration featured scenarios for both deliberative strike and time sensitive strike. The deliberative strike scenario included intelligence preparation of the battle space and normal strike planning operations from the Air Tasking Order consumption through strike planning and weaponeering. The time sensitive strike scenario introduced targets of opportunity into the environment. With the eESWA architecture, operators were able to prepare a completed strike package ready for execution under both scenarios. The Navy will use the data gathered from this demonstration to drive the requirements for future programs, including the next JSIPS-N commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) refresh, scheduled for 2005.

Post a comment to this article