by Staff Writers
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Mar 14, 2023
Space Systems Command (SSC) successfully demonstrated its ground-based antijamming satellite communications (SATCOM) capability using an on-orbit operational satellite. The event demonstrated over-the-air Protected Tactical Waveform (PTW) connectivity between a Protected Tactical Enterprise Service (PTES) Joint Hub and a test terminal, and over-the-wire connectivity to a PTW-capable modem developed by the Army Airforce Antijam Modem Program Office. PTW provides joint warfighters with critical anti-jam capability.
SSC facilitated affordable upgrades to existing terminals, saving 95% over the cost of new terminal development. This is the second over-the-air demo for PTES and a key milestone for integration of end user equipment.
"This is a significant step forward in demonstrating the initial capabilities and nearing delivery of these critical communication tools to our servicemembers," said Charlotte Gerhart, SSC's Tactical SATCOM Acquisition Delta chief. "The ability to augment the current wideband constellation combined with the potential to introduce resilience, will greatly enhance our ability to stay connected in contested environments."
PTES is the enabling ground system (mission management system, key management system, key loading and initialization facility, and joint hubs) for PTW operations over the Wideband Global SATCOM fleet, enhancing military features with high levels of jamming resistance and connectivity assurance. Initial operational capability is expected to be fielded in 2024.
"I couldn't be prouder of our entire PTES team coming together to showcase the maturity of the system and look forward to pushing these capabilities to the field soon," said Lt. Col. David Bates, SSC's PTES leader.
SSC's PTES team conducted the demonstration, which took place at the Joint Satellite Engineering Center in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, and included a demonstration of crypto initialization, acquisition and logon key and mission management, and performance monitoring.
"It's amazing to see what our team accomplishes through teamwork, flexibility, and a relentless focus on delivering a much-needed capability to the warfighter," said Rich Sanchez, SSC's chief engineer for PTES. Military Communications and Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) is the program executive office within Space Systems Command that is responsible for delivering next generation technologies that bolster the resilience of our nation's military satellite communications and space based PNT capabilities. Innovation focus areas include strategic, protected tactical, wideband and narrowband satellite communications, global positioning system user equipment and command and control, and PNT services.
Space Systems Command (SSC) is the U.S. Space Force field command responsible for acquiring and delivering resilient war fighting capabilities to protect our nation's strategic advantage in and from space. SSC manages an $11 billion space acquisition budget for the Department of Defense and works in partnership with joint forces, industry, government agencies, academic and allied organizations to accelerate innovation and outpace emerging threats. Our actions today are making the world a better space for tomorrow.
US Space Force
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