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NATO to Upgrade UHF Satcom Control Stations with ViaSat

By | January 3, 2018
      NATO's new headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. Photo: NATO.

      NATO’s new headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. Photo: NATO.

      The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has awarded ViaSat a contract to upgrade its Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) satellite communications control stations to comply with the Integrated Waveform (IW) baseline. The upgrade gives NATO greater communications interoperability, scalability and flexibility across legacy and next-generation platforms to enhance situational awareness as the battlespace expands.

      As part of this award, NATO will upgrade its legacy UHF communications network to Viasat’s Visual Integrated Satcom Information, Operation and Networking (VISION) planning and network management platform, a software package that simultaneously supports all 25 kHz legacy Demand-Assigned Multiple-Access (DAMA) and next-generation IW networks and services.

      According to ViaSat, the VISION platform gives network operators real-time capabilities to reconfigure UHF satellite networks to meet new mission profiles on the fly. By enabling interoperability between DAMA and IW platforms, NATO can double its channel efficiency without additional investment in the UHF space segment. This optimization doubles the number of users, giving more warfighters access to reliable and resilient voice and data communications, according to ViaSat.

      “Networked forces need to be able to receive and execute orders dynamically in the fog of war. With the ViaSat VISION platform, we can use our UHF space segment more efficiently as it more than doubles our existing UHF user access,” said Giovanni Battista Durando, satcom service area owner for NATO Communications and Information Agency. “We believe the ViaSat VISION platform will give NATO network operators more control over communications stations from a single terminal, simplifying operations and offering multi-site flexibility to ultimately increase the network readiness of the warfighter.”

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