BVLOS Connectivity Capabilities for Air Force Operations in Africa

SKYTRAC’s SDL-350 SATCOM system offers military-grade cybersecurity for classified military operations by enabling encrypted communications between the aircraft and ground through a secure, private network By DA Staff / 22 Nov 2021
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SKYTRAC Systems Ltd. and Soteria Advanced Technologies Ltd. have announced Soteria’s appointment as a formal SKYTRAC partner within the African region.

Soteria, leveraging its expertise in the African military market, has been contracted to provide the SKYTRAC SDL-350 satellite communications (SATCOM) system for undisclosed Air Force operations in Africa. This program supports Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) operations with a fleet of rotary and fixed-wing aircraft. SKYTRAC’s SDL-350 and Iridium Certus connectivity services leverage the Iridium NEXT Low Earth Orbit (LEO) constellation to provide globally available broadband connectivity. This connectivity will enable live video streaming for ISR applications, as well as onboard Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity.

As a multifunctional and configurable system, the SDL-350 will be integrated with the Coded Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (COFDM) video, data, and audio meshed links, an Internet Protocol (IP) based intercom system, and tactical radios that provide line-of-sight connectivity. The SDL-350 will be utilized for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) connectivity once the line-of-sight system is effectively out of range, extending mission viability for Soteria’s African military partner.

“By enabling encrypted communications between the aircraft and ground through a private, secure network, SKYTRAC offers military-grade cybersecurity, ideal for classified military operations,” said Tom Roos, Managing Director, Soteria. 

“We look forward to introducing SKYTRAC’s connectivity solutions to the African aerospace and defense market. LEO satellite communications are revolutionizing military ISR operations, and we look forward to extending SKYTRAC’s technological prowess to our partners throughout Africa.”

The SDL-350 will enable military operators to distribute ISR information to several airborne, mobile, and ground based assets for Command and Control (C2) purposes. The SDL-350 will also support Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) calls and in-cabin Wi-Fi connectivity for additional onboard devices such as workstations, mobile phones, tablets, and laptops.

“Our solutions are designed with government users in mind to offer secure and reliable communications for austere, mission-critical operations anywhere on earth,” said Jeff Sherwood, Director of Business Development at SKYTRAC. 

“We’re very excited to partner with Soteria and further demonstrate our capability to support government and military operations throughout Africa.”

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