Newtec, a producer of satellite communications technology, has deployed its Internet protocol traffic enhancement and shaping technology—known as cross-layer-optimization—to the German military’s EURO HAWKunmanned aerial vehicle.
The EURO HAWK is a joint program between Cassidian, a global provider of security solutions and systems, and Northrop Grumman, a designer of military aircraft. The UAV detects and collects information and Newtec’s technology is required in order to secure the downlink via satellite.
Germany’s armed forces say the debut of the largest UAV in German airspace signals a new era. “It’s a milestone for us,” said Rüdiger Knöpfel, the head of the unmanned project department at the German Federal Office of Defence Technology and Procurement. The EURO HAWK is 15 meters long, has a wingspan of 40 meters and take-off weight of approximately 15 tons, the UAV outstrips other unmanned drones, he said.
The EURO HAWK can stay airborne for more than 30 hours and fly more than 20,000 kilometers before needing to refuel, the German military says. The UAV can reach an altitude of 20,000 meters—above the altitude at which civil aircraft fly—the drone’s SIGnals INTelligence (SIGINT) system detects and collects information from ELectronic INTelligence (ELINT) radar emitters and communications emitters. The UAV transmits the information to the ground stations in real-time for analysis and dissemination.
In order to secure the downlink of the recorded data, Newtec ‘s cross-layer-optimization enhances communication, the company says. The EURO HAWK’s technologies interact to optimize the communication link, and the system can be tailored to provide the maximum availability and bandwidth efficiency to any application running for the UAV’s interaction and data transmission, Newtec says.
“The EURO HAWK is an important asset for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations for Germany and its partner states, and has Newtec technology at its core,” saidSerge Van Herck, Newtec’s CES. “Key to this project was providing expertise and the right solution to ensure the satellite link for Beyond-Line-of-Sight communications. Newtec technology allows the most data and video as possible through the satellite link whilst providing optimal availability to assure mission critical communications.”