ViaSat Fields Real-Time Network Management System for Military Airborne ISR

ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT) has successfully fielded Satellite Access Manager (SAM), a new broadband satcom service manager for military airborne ISR (Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance) operations. SAM is providing U.S. forces throughout the Middle East with dramatically higher bandwidth utilization and efficiency, as well as higher data rates and increased signal-to-noise performance.

SAM is a real-time network monitoring system for ViaSat ArcLight® 2 mobile satellite broadband terminals. The system enables network managers to provision multiple remote users on an airborne network within a common bandwidth pool, and provides dynamic assignment of bandwidth and communications priority to high-value platforms as they begin missions. In addition, manual overrides can reassign satellite channels in real time to support changing mission requirements. SAM is primarily for DoD missions, which have very different requirements compared to commercial network customers who share capacity while using the ViaSat Yonder® global mobile service.

Airborne on-the-move (OTM) satellite communication faces challenges in providing adequate, dedicated bandwidth for ISR missions, including roaming across multiple beams, and using multiple satellite transponders – some with inclined orbits. SAM seamlessly supports the acquisition of discontinuous bandwidth in this dynamic environment.

"With SAM-enabled ViaSat mobile ArcLight 2 terminals, users can configure a fleet of aircraft to operate on the same network, yet consume bandwidth only for those aircraft flying at the same time," said Larry Taylor, deputy general manager for ViaSat Global Mobile Broadband. "That can result in huge cost savings over systems that require allocation of satellite bandwidth for all aircraft in the fleet whether they fly or not."

ViaSat mobile satellite terminals have added new modes of operation with SAM to enhance the broadband experience:

  • Point-to-point dedicated forward link (hub carrier) to the remote user, which can operate at data rates beyond 10 Mbps while the return link off the aircraft offers up to 10 Mbps
  • Continuous return link for streaming video data, which typically requires 25% less signal to noise ratio and delivers 20% more throughput than the standard burst mode
  • Industry-leading broadband performance in both Ku- and Ka-band with antennas as small as 12" (30cm)

Source: ViaSat Inc.
Date: Mar 19, 2012