Military Embedded Systems

MUOS waveform for secure satellite communications completed by Lockheed Martin


January 08, 2013

John McHale

Editorial Director

Military Embedded Systems

SUNNYVALE, CA. Lockheed Martin engineers completed and delivered the new software waveform for the U.S. Navy’s Mobile User Objective System (MUOS). The U.S. government has made the waveform available for military satellite communications terminal providers via the Joint Tactical Networking Center (JTNC) Information Repository. Contractors also may integrate the waveform into their MUOS-compatible terminals to deploy WCDMA capabilities for their users.

MUOS -- which is a next-generation narrowband tactical satellite communications system -- provides secure communications capabilities, such as simultaneous voice, video and data, for mobile and remote operators. This new waveform will allow military satellite communications terminal providers to use equipment that can take full advantage of the enhanced MUOS capabilities.

MUOS satellites have a Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) payload that enables a 16-fold increase in transmission via over the current Ultra High Frequency (UHF) satellite system. Lockheed Martin engineers designed a previously commercial waveform to be used with the new WCDMA payload.

Each MUOS satellite also has a legacy UHF payload that is compatible with current UHF Follow-on system and legacy terminals. The dual-payload design enables an easy transition to the WCDMA technology while the UFO system is phased out.

currently the first MUOS satellite and its associated ground system provide initial on-orbit capability. Once the second MUOS satellite is launched in this summer and completes its on-orbit testing and check-out with the MUOS ground system and a HMS Manpack terminal -- certified with the MUOS waveform -- the system will then provide full WCDMA capability to users.

Lockheed Martin is contracted to deliver five MUOS satellites and associated ground system to the U.S. Navy. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the MUOS prime contractor and system integrator. The Navy's Program Executive Office for Space Systems in Chantilly, VA., and its Communications Satellite Program Office in San Diego are responsible for the MUOS program.


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