EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES

SATCOM Hardware Will Be Downsized on Navy Ships

7/1/2009
By Robert H. Williams
Too many satellite terminals aboard Navy ships create electromagnetic interference. The hardware also takes up too much space on ship decks. As a result, the Navy will be consolidating multiple terminals and satellite-communications services into just two programs, officials said.

“There are lots of terminals, lots of programs of record going aboard ships, and there’s limited topside real estate,” said Kai Tang, SATCOM division director at the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center in San Diego. “With too many emitters, we have too much EMI,” Tang said. “EMI is a big problem on ships.”

The Navy wants to consolidate seven SATCOM programs into two — the Naval Multiband Terminal and a commercial broadband service, known as CBSP. The Commercial Broadband Satellite Program would supplement military-unique SATCOM.

An aircraft carrier would require only one or two NMTs, instead of multiple terminals as is currently the case.

The Raytheon Co. is building the NMT under a $1.1 billion contract to deploy new terminals on more than 300 ships, submarines and shore stations, said Bill Schroeder, Raytheon’s program manager for NMT.

Topics: Homeland Security, Emergency Communications, Shipbuilding

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