XTAR has one customer and one customer only: the military or government user. We see this as a strength, not a limitation, as everything we do is designed to ensure success for that end user. With a lot of talk recently about HTS, we wanted to explain how we compare, especially from the user’s experience. This post is second in a series of four which examines key ways in which HTS and X-band differ according to the needs and requirements of that military/government user. [Read more…]
XTAR has one customer and one customer only: the military or government user. We see this as a strength, not a limitation, as everything we do is designed to ensure success for that end user. With a lot of talk recently about HTS, we wanted to explain how we compare, especially from the user’s experience. This four-part series will examine the key ways in which HTS and X-band differ according to the needs and requirements of that military/government user. [Read more…]
Think about all the truly mediocre products that have made it to market. Your list might differ from mine, but I would include McDonald’s hamburgers, Wonder Bread and those exploding hoverboards.
Now for all of those disappointing products that somehow made it, think about the high quality products out there that haven’t gotten the notice they deserve. [Read more…]
On Saturday, March 18, the Department of Defense successfully launched the ninth of ten military satellite communications (MILSATCOM) satellites known as Wideband Global SATCOM – Nine (WGS-9) into orbit, bringing significantly more X-band and Ka-band SATCOM capacity into the hands of the U.S. Department of Defense and the militaries of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and New Zealand. This launch reinforces the prime importance of X-and Ka-radio frequency (RF) bands long into the future of MILSATCOM.
We’ve yet to hear a satellite company boast about having the largest mobile terminals around. Mobile terminals are best in small, portable sizes that can easily move as the mission does. So what importance should be placed on the size of a satellite communications provider? Is bigger better here as well? [Read more…]
You may have never noticed, but X-band is all around you. Many police speed-trap radars used to enforce safe speeds, and even air traffic control radars used for aircraft collision avoidance, all operate in X-band. [Read more…]
Background. On December 7, 2016, the US Air Force launched the 8th of 10 planned Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellites into orbit, from Cape Canaveral in Florida. This latest WGS satellite marks a technological leap forward for the WGS constellation, bringing more X- (and Ka-band) capacity to the Department of Defense. X-band is also an important part of NATO’s own CP130 capabilities package for satellite communications. There is a reason that the Department of Defense and NATO have invested so heavily in X-band: X-band provides high-throughput, virtually weatherproof satellite communications that excels with high-mobility, lightweight applications ranging from forward tactical and SOF units, to maritime communications, to airborne ISR and UAV assets. For these types of applications, X-band in fact provides substantially better service than Ka-band. No wonder X-band is a key component of the Department of Defense’s and NATO’s SATCOM architectures.
Over the last few weeks, XTAR eagerly anticipated the results of Army’s tests of its new inflatable satellite terminal for robust communications on the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN-T), using X-band. These satellite systems can deliver advanced, high-bandwidth communications to the tactical edge, and they continue to prove the critical role of X-band satellites for the Army. [Read more…]
On November 8, coincident with the Global MilSatCom Conference in London, Philip Harlow, President and COO of XTAR, was interviewed by Peter Warren on the radio show PassW0rd where they discussed contested space, militarization of satellites and orbital debris.
You can listen to the interview here where Philip Harlow discusses the many types of risks to satellites in orbit along with examples of recent events. Typically, the “militarization of space” brings to mind complex weapons taking aim to destroy a satellite. But the actions that could cripple, disable, or worse still hack or spoof a satellite, are far more nuanced, as explained in this piece.
The entire broadcast can be found here.
© Cyber Security Research Institute
Part II: Is there a disconnect between words and deeds in DoD Innovation and Procurement Practices?
The pitfalls seem to lie in the environment and the execution.
The DoD has sought the engagement of the commercial space industry to develop innovative solutions that will allow COMSATCOM and MILSATCOM architectures to be interoperable, particularly as it looks to the next gen MILSATCOM. There have been incremental successes with Space & Missile Command and JFCC. Maybe the way the DoD does things in this arena will work out well, although past and present experience casts doubt on this. [Read more…]