New Airborne ISR SATCOM Capability for Military Operators

Eclipse Global Connectivity, Smiths Interconnect and ST Engineering iDirect’s aircraft SATCOM system will initially address the beyond-line-of-sight connectivity requirements for an EMEA government unmanned platform By DA Reporter / 25 Jan 2022

Eclipse Global Connectivity, Smiths Interconnect and ST Engineering iDirect (iDirect) are collaborating to deliver an integrated Airborne Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (A-ISR) satellite communications (SATCOM) capability for military and government aircraft. 

The solution will initially address the beyond-line-of-sight connectivity requirements for an EMEA government unmanned platform.

“Bringing together our collective expertise allows us to deliver innovative solutions with a turnkey approach,” Marc Pinault, CEO of Eclipse Global Connectivity, said about the collaboration. “We share a common commitment to delivering satellite connectivity solutions that enable military and government customers to achieve their mission objectives, and we are pleased to partner with Smiths Interconnect and ST Engineering iDirect, two industry-leading organizations.”

The new Ka-Band solution operates across military and civil frequencies and is suitable for manned and unmanned platforms. The recognized and proven iDirect Evolution Defense platform features military-grade security and advanced mobility capabilities for tactical operations. The iDirect 9800 AE+ airborne modem combined with the Smiths Interconnect KaStream 5000 MK II, a next-generation 30cm parabolic antenna, provides a complete solution for A-ISR operations.

Eclipse Global Connectivity is the end-to-end systems integrator, providing the aircraft radome, platform integration/certification and military-grade encryption. Lightweight and compact, this new capability enables high data rate connectivity, enabling HD full-motion video to support A-ISR missions. Given that the solution is interoperable with a wide range of current and future Ka-band satellite constellations, the operator can fly missions anywhere in the world, with truly global connectivity.

“When three companies of this caliber team up, you can be sure that an innovative solution will emerge,” said Ralph DeMarco, vice president of sales at Smiths Interconnect. “Our Ka-5000 two LRU configuration offers a lightweight airborne satellite connectivity solution while simultaneously providing continuous high data rate bandwidth, helping to ensure mission success. Through the technology collaboration with Eclipse and ST Engineering iDirect, we deliver a new capability that meets the customer’s needs and enhances our product offering of high reliability, high performance solutions for satellite communications.”

“Our heritage in the government, defense and mobility sectors has given us an innate understanding of their unique user requirements,” said Jerome Clapisson, regional vice president of sales, Europe at ST Engineering iDirect. “We strive to provide the products that will enable our best-in-class ecosystem partners to merge the most innovative components that result in a state-of-art solution. We are delighted to have this opportunity to collaborate with Eclipse and Smiths Interconnect.”

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