development environment. We continue to make upgrades to the system based on user needs and look
forward to bringing its full capabilities to our warfight-ers,” Woempner said.
Today there are more than 55,000 radio terminals
currently fielded that can be upgraded to be MUOS-compatible, with many of them requiring just a software
Advanced Electromagnetic Maneuver
Warfare Capabilities Showcased at AOC
Northrop Grumman Corp. recently showcased two milestones in the development of ad- vanced electromagnetic maneuver warfare
capabilities during the 54th Annual Association of Old
Crows (AOC) International Symposium and Convention. The symposium, themed “Innovation and Change
in Electromagnetic Warfare,” took place in Washington,
D.C., November 28-30.
At the symposium, Northrop Grumman showcased
its Multifunction Transceiver (MFX™) and direct RF
technology. MFX™ and RF offer unique approaches
through sampling and synthesis that enable a variety of
RF-enabled mission solutions. These mission enablers
form part of the technological foundation of forthcoming advanced integrated mission systems.
MFX™ is an advanced programmable receiver, exciter, signal processor and waveform generator that enables multifunction applications through scalable choices of operating frequencies, bandwidths and channels.
Its inclusion in the RF chain allows for integrated capabilities in domains such as electronic warfare (EW),
communications, signals intelligence (SIGINT) and radar. Northrop Grumman recently demonstrated these
unique capabilities at the U.S. Pacific Command’s 2017
Northern Edge Combat Exercise. The MFX™ enabled
electronic attack/electronic support measure (EA/ESM)
subsystem is just one of ten next-generation air warfare
capabilities Northrop Grumman successfully demonstrated during the exercise. Attendees at AOC had the
opportunity to see MFX™ and its concept for utilization
in advanced mission systems.
Complementing the capabilities of MFX™, Northrop
Grumman’s development of novel analog-to-digital
and digital-to-analog converters enables direct RF sampling and synthesis. RF sampling and synthesis plays an
important role in eliminating the need for bulky analog
front-end components and substantially reducing the
size, weight and power of future mission payloads while
simultaneously improving system level performance.
These direct digital conversion components were recently integrated and tested on an advanced prototype
multifunction system, demonstrating the ability to sup-
MWJOURNAL.COM JANUARY 2018 53
Cliff Drubin, Associate Technical Editor
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US Navy Accepts 5th MUOS Satellite for
Secure Global Military Cellular Network
The U.S. Navy’s Communications Satellite Program Office and Lockheed Martin recent- ly handed over full operational control of the
fifth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite to
the Naval Satellite Operations Center (NAVSOC).
This followed the successful completion of the
MUOS- 5 satellite’s on-orbit testing and delivery of all
operational products needed to “fly” the satellite. In
April, the Navy, working with Army Forces Strategic
Command (ARSTRAT), configured one of MUOS- 5’s
two communications payloads—its legacy Ultra High
Frequency (UHF) payload—for testing.
The handover of this satellite to NAVSOC clears the
final hurdle allowing for ARSTRAT to provide the payload’s final configurations to support the Navy’s legacy
UHF satellite communications mission.
“Today, every Combatant Command in aircraft, ships,
submarines, ground vehicles, as well as by troops in the
field and special operations, rely upon secure, beyond-
line-of-sight UHF satellite communications provided by
the Navy,” said Mark Woempner, Lockheed Martin’s
director for Narrowband Communications. “ARSTRAT’s
final configuration of MUOS- 5’s UHF legacy payload al-
lows the satellite to fully support our military forces in
these Combatant Commands.”
Eventually, legacy narrowband UHF communications
will transition to next generation Wideband Code Divi-
sion Multiple Access (WCDMA) capabilities. To facilitate
that transition, all five on-orbit MUOS satellites were
intentionally designed with two communications pay-
loads to support both Legacy UHF and WCDMA.
Early combatant commander testing of the on-orbit
WCDMA payloads began in July 2016. The new MUOS
capabilities will revolutionize communications for mobile forces with simultaneous, crystal-clear voice, video
and mission data over a secure high speed Internet Pro-tocol-based system. Users with new MUOS terminals
will be able to seamlessly connect beyond line-of-sight
around the world and into the Global Information Grid,
as well as into the Defense Switched Network, as part of
the Navy’s worldwide cellular network.
Once fully operational, the MUOS network of five on-orbit satellites and four relay ground stations will provide more than 10x the communications capacity of the
legacy UHF satellite system. MUOS’ network already
provides near-global coverage, including communications into polar regions. MUOS also has demonstrated
successful communication of Integrated Broadcast Service (IBS) messages.
“Similar to a civilian cellular phone service, upgrades
to this new secure global military cellular network are
ground-based and designed in an AGILE software