Roccor, small satellite market hardware supplier, has created a deployable L-band antenna that it says makes the reception and transmission of Link 16 signals via spacecraft possible. This development, which Roccor announced Tuesday, is in partnership with Viasat, Inc., and the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate, and is part of the first Link 16-capable Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) spacecraft demonstration mission, XVI, set for launch later this year.
Bruce Davis, Roccor’s director of Space Antenna and Deorbit Products, the widely proliferated Link 16 tactical communication network is the preferred choice of U.S. Department of Defense customers and a number of NATO allies for communication between ships, aircraft, maritime vessels, and troops operating at the tactical edge.
“This will significantly broaden the Link 16 tactical communications network capabilities,” Davis said. “Viasat came to us with a hard problem and a tight timeframe. They needed robust broadband capabilities – ‘big ears’ – to enable communications across a range of frequencies and they wanted to demonstrate it on a small satellite platform that is easily scalable to constellation-class missions. Our solution extends the range of Link 16 networks, substantially enhancing situational awareness and mission capabilities for U.S. military personnel operating across the global battlespace.”
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