In the digital age, satellites are closing in on the crown
The Satellite 2010 conference, held March 15-18, offered a forum for vendors, govvies, contractors and military members to debate all that is satellite communications in the federal and commercial spheres.
On a stage just outside Washington, D.C., the new trends to watch for and lofty requirements to reach emerged: a continuing run for 3D; successful infiltration of ‘going green’ into the exosphere; and an ongoing tug-of-war over bandwidth and capacity.
But the most impressive discussions and new trends related to the military field. Here, satellites work alongside soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen, assisting in combat operations. Satellites are providing broad sight lines across huge swaths of theater and connecting tactical-level forces on the ground with the Pentagon and everyone in between. And satellite technology is integral to the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance the military heavily relies on.
In an era of unconventional warfare, the satellite represents today what radar did for the Allies in World War II: rapidly evolving technology offering an unprecedented and all-seeing view of movement throughout the combat theater.
Today’s defense satellite communications, as modeled at SatCom 2010, is net-centric and securely plugged in to the military’s Global Information Grid. The modern satellite offers global coverage with seamless regional transition. It provides visibility to all nodes in the management of the network.
In short, the satellite is rising as one of the most important tools in today’s fight. With such versatility and so many possible applications, there are myriad ways to harness its power. At SatCom 2010 this week, a record 9,500 attendees sought not only a piece of the pie but a way to contribute to the technological evolution — and to support the troops.
Amber Corrin is a staff writer covering military networks for Defense Systems.