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BLoS SATCOM for Rotary Wing

Deploying airborne platforms for real-time Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) is integral to protecting national borders and ports.

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Deploying airborne platforms for real-time Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) is integral to protecting national borders and ports. Onboard sensors help detect and identify potential threats and advanced communications solutions equipped with satellite connectivity can deliver data and video information from virtually anywhere for leaders to take appropriate action. Helicopters are especially advantageous for these initiatives by surveying large areas in a relatively short period, with better maneuverability and a closer field of view of critical areas. However, rotor blades block transmissions multiple times per second resulting in high levels of packet errors, that has in the past constrained rotary wing platforms to the only Line-ofSight (LoS) communications, even when employing synchronization strategies and extra power output.

With the new HM Satellite Communications (SATCOM) technology from Hughes, Beyond-Line-of-Sight (BLoS) solutions are now available that fundamentally change the way data is processed and utilized giving real-time situational awareness—opening the way for manned or unmanned helicopter ISR missions around the globe. Breakthrough advancements in waveform and coding techniques have been proven to deliver high-throughput data at rates exceeding 20 Mbps with virtually zero packet loss between airborne platforms and satellite ground hubs, as vividly demonstrated by live HD video streaming applications.

This BLoS capability is embedded in the Hughes HM200 softwaredefinable modem (SDM), which is also band agnostic, operating in L-, X-, Ku-, or Ka-band frequencies. It interfaces to a flexible antenna designed for specialized multi-mission applications, with roll-on/rolloff functionality that enables simultaneous use of armed payloads by being mounted above the armament subsystem, on top of the fuselage, or other platform locations of manned and unmanned aircraft. An overall open system architecture facilitates employing various antenna configurations of different size, weight, and power (SWaP), depending on mission requirements. 

Applications:

  • Airborne ISR gathering
  • Search and rescue
  • Border protection
  • Law enforcement
  • Disaster and wildfire response
  • News and media
  • VIP and passenger communications