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Raytheon, CAES to Provide RF Converters for AFRL Satcom Program

Satellite communications

Raytheon, CAES to Provide RF Converters for AFRL Satcom Program

Raytheon’s intelligence and space division has partnered with electronics maker CAES to provide radiofrequency signal conversion technology for the Air Force Research Laboratory’s “Global Lightning” program.

Global Lightning, or the Defense Experimentation Using Commercial Space Internet, is the military’s effort to connect aircraft to commercial satellite internet constellations in low Earth orbit, CAES said Monday.

CAES President and CEO Mike Kahn, a member of the Potomac Officers Club and a two-time Wash100 winner, said CAES has a history of designing novel narrowband and wideband mmWave solutions for military and space applications.

“CAES is excited to be chosen as a key partner for Raytheon’s DEUCSI solution, in what could become a widely used, high capacity data communications capability for the United States military,” Kahn added. 

As part of their partnership, CAES will provide the multi-band frequency converters that will be integrated with Raytheon’s new phased array antenna.

CAES said its converters support uplink and downlink functionality, in addition to enabling high-density circuit integration, high channel-to-channel isolation, strong thermal management and small form-factor solutions. 

The converters’ combination with Raytheon’s technology will enable a sort of roaming capability that will allow aircraft to seamlessly connect to different satellite internet constellations, according to CAES. The DEUCSI program will culminate in a flight test in 2022. 

In late April, the Department of Defense demonstrated its Enterprise Management and Control plan in an effort to optimize access to a hybrid satellite constellation used by multiple service providers. 

Contractor Kratos Defense and Security Solutions said roaming satellite communications will play a strategic role in providing warfighters assured satellite communications access to legacy and next-generation terminals. 

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