A Raytheon NMT undergoes testing.


Navy ups contract for enhancing satellite comms

The Navy is adding to a contract to deliver high-speed multiband satellite terminals to about 300 ships, submarines and shore stations over the next six years.

The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command in San Diego has awarded Raytheon a $9.1 million modification to a contract awarded at the end of 2015 for fully integrated Navy Multiband Terminals, which will quadruple the transmission speeds over current terminals while using its dual antenna to allow simultaneous use of military bands for users at sea. Ships will be able to use the Q, Ka and X bands, submarines the Q and X bands, and both types of vessels will have access to the Global Broadcast Service. Shore stations, meanwhile, will have to stick to the Q band.

NMT will provide transmission speeds of up to 8 megabits/sec for voice, data and video (in certain situations that could be dialed down to as low as 75 bits/sec), according to the Navy. Its wideband variants will allow communication with the Defense Satellite Communications System and the Wideband Global Satellite Communications System.

The systems also is intended for at least limited communications with coalition partners—the contract calls for 97 percent of those 300 systems going to the Navy, with the other 3 percent going to the United Kingdom under the Defense Department’s Foreign Military Sales program.

The original contract, awarded Dec. 29, was for $103 million and covered work until the end of fiscal 2016. But if all options are exercised, the value of the deal would rise to $467 million, according to the original announcement, with work continuing until September 2022.

About the Author

Kevin McCaney is a former editor of Defense Systems and GCN.

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