Livestream satellite connectivity from in-flight helicopter successfully demosNews
June 15, 2020
GERMANTOWN, Md. Hughes Network Systems reports a recent successful in-flight demonstration of its HeloSat satellite communications (SATCOM) system from a Black Hawk helicopter; company officials say that the HeloSat transmitted consistent, real-time, full-motion video to a live global audience from the Black Hawk as it surveilled the landscape below.
Wayne Marhefka, senior director, Hughes Defense, said of the flight test: "Customers from as far away as Spain, India, and the United Arab Emirates watched the Hughes HeloSat demonstration in Tennessee via livestream – the epitome of 'beyond line of sight' (BLoS) communications. This flight validates the Hughes HeloSat capability to support missions such as intelligence, surveillance, and eeconnaissance (ISR); search and rescue, emergency response, and airborne command aboard rotary aircraft like the Black Hawk."
John Wellington, chief flight instructor, XP Services Inc. and former 160th Special Operations Aviation Regimen flight lead -- the pilot of the Black Hawk during the demo-- said that the HeloSat system maintained the live-stream video feed throughout the 30-minute flight, "something I've never experienced before on a rotary wing. Maintaining connectivity for the duration of the mission is critical, because when it is time to go, you need to be ready to go."