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General Dynamics' Warrior Antenna Terminals

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by Staff Writers
Scottsdale AZ (SPX) Aug 30, 2010
Two General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies' Warrior antenna terminals are now certified by the U.S. Army to use the Ka-band frequency to access the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) network, enabling warfighters to transmit and receive video, multimedia imagery and data faster and more securely.

Certification ensures that the General Dynamics Warrior 1.2 and 1.8 meter, Ka-band enabled terminals meet stringent performance and operational control requirements needed to operate on the WGS network.

The WGS network comprises a constellation of six U.S. Department of Defense satellites that provide flexible communications connectivity for U.S. military forces.

Certification, completed by the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command (SMDC/ARSTRAT), enables Warrior terminals currently used by the U.S. Marine Corps as part of the Support Wide Area Network (SWAN) program to access the WGS network.

The SWAN program provides the Marines with secure and non-secure commercial-off-the-shelf satellite communications equipment that can quickly accommodate technology insertions and upgrades like the Ka-band capability.

The higher transmit and receive operating frequencies inherent to Ka-Band allow the SWAN terminals to use smaller, lighter, and more highly integrated communications capabilities than those used at Ku-Band. In addition to a smaller footprint and reduced weight, other benefits of Ka-band over Ku-band for satellite communications include:

+ Higher data-rate throughput for improved quality of video, voice and data communications

+ Reduced space segment cost through the use of the WGS system

+ Reduced communications interference issues due to dedicated WGS satellite access

The Warrior 1.2 and 1.8 meter terminals are composed of Very Small Aperture (VSAT) antenna subsystems, power amplifiers, Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) modems, automatic tracking control and other related electronic subsystems.

Marvin Shoemake, vice president of sales for General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies, said, "The successful completion of the SMDC/ARSTRAT testing represents a major Ka-band upgrade for the SWAN program. The certification also opens the door for other government agencies, including homeland security, to have robust, beyond-line-of-sight communications using the WGS network."

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