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Boeing Showcases Operational TSAT System during Critical Review


Boeing [NYSE: BA] and its industry teammates recently demonstrated the advanced capabilities the Transformational Satellite Communications System (TSAT) will offer the nation’s warfighters during a critical Space Segment Design Review (SSDR).

“The demonstration was as real as TSAT can be at this point in its lifecycle -- it used real hardware and software, real interfaces and real algorithms,” said Howard Chambers, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. “The Boeing TSAT Team proved its capabilities by demonstrating a system that is meeting tomorrow’s requirements, building on yesterday’s successes and operating today.”

Funded by Boeing’s “TEAM TSAT,” the demonstration to more than 500 government and industry officials implemented all of the U.S. Air Force-defined TSAT critical missions, including strategic; communications-on-the-move; and airborne intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (AISR).

During the demonstration’s fictional storyline, virtual warfighters used a developmental Joint Tactical Radio System to communicate live with the AISR sources, between tactical groups and within their own mobile ad hoc networks. Testers also demonstrated TSAT’s ability to bridge these networks with seamless connectivity while controlling strategic assets. The storyline included Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicles, space radar systems, airborne command centers and deployed warfighters.

“The goal of the demonstration was to graphically depict the capabilities TSAT will deliver to the warfighter,” Chambers said. “We are building on our extensive background in providing MILSTAR payloads, our experience fielding the only space-based network, SPACEWAY™, and our unprecedented Internet heritage. This experience, along with proven, integrated technologies, ensures a low-risk approach for our U.S. Air Force customer.”

The demonstration follows other major successful milestones, including last year’s demonstration of delivering MP-3 files, streaming video multi-cast and voice over Internet protocol services using the Boeing- and Hughes-built SPACEWAY™ satellite currently in orbit. The SPACEWAY™ demonstration serves as an “existence proof” for TSAT and confirms the operational maturity of many enabling technologies.

The recent SSDR also featured a diverse exhibit hall that included brass board-level hardware, demonstrations of TSAT functionality and displays summarizing risk reduction accomplishments.

The Boeing-led team includes Cisco Systems, Hughes, IBM, Harris Corp., Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., LGS Innovations, Raytheon, General Dynamics, L-3 Communications, BBN Technologies, EMS Technologies and SAIC.


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