Boeing Defense, Space & Security2006-08-14 09:01:24

Boeing Demonstrates TSAT Operational Capabilities

The Boeing Company recently demonstrated the interoperability of the Transformational Satellite Communications (TSAT) Space Segment program with other transformational military systems during a quarterly program management review.

Boeing conducted the demonstration for the U.S. Air Force Military Satellite Communications (MILSATCOM) Joint Program Office and representatives of the TSAT user community, including the U.S. Strategic Command, Air Force Space Command, Secretary of the Air Force, Army Forces Strategic Command, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense and the Space and Naval Warfare System Command.

The demonstration, the latest in a series of reviews for the program's critical technologies and system operations, allowed users to experience the interoperability of the future space-based network with the Transformational Communications Demonstration Capability (TCDC) system, an enterprise-wide asset that provides a live, virtual, and constructive simulation and test environment. Using the TCDC to emulate the military's Joint Tactical Radio System, Boeing engineers showed how the two systems would operate together using simulated global war on terrorism scenarios and realistic ground network signals. Boeing proved the systems' compatibility by reallocating bandwidth to provide "always connected" communications, including Web browsing, Internet voice services and text messaging to every warfighter, anywhere and at anytime.

"Our tests simulated real-world conditions such as blockages due to rough terrain, loss of terminals in the network and fully loaded capacity utilization," said Michael Gianelli, vice president of Boeing Navigation and Communication Systems. "With each review session, we're pushing the technology maturity and functional operation envelope of the TSAT system. Our customer, the U.S. Air Force, and our end-users can see the tremendous progress our team is making and that TSAT's important capabilities for the warfighter are real and achievable."

The review also provided progress updates in other key areas, including specification maturation, the TSAT block development approach, software architecture development, and the path to full-scale Space Segment and software integration. During a related executive risk management review with the customer, Boeing received high marks on the completion of planned development milestones and the delivery of associated data and documentation. These events, combined with demonstrations of TSAT's Next Generation Processor Router and Laser Communications earlier this year, help mark a successful path for the program's future.

Boeing is working under a $514 million U.S. Air Force contract for the risk reduction and system definition phase of the TSAT Space Segment program. The Boeing TSAT team includes Raytheon, Ball Aerospace, General Dynamics, IBM, L-3 Communications, Cisco Systems, BBN Technologies, Hughes Network Systems, Lucent Technologies, Harris, EMS Technologies, ICE and Alpha Informatics. The Air Force plans to select a primary TSAT Space Segment contractor in December 2007.

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