Friedrichshafen, August 2022 - Following the operational readiness announcement of the large ground station BSg-A in Weilheim at the end of July, Airbus was able to successfully complete the performance enhancements of the satellite communications network SATCOMBw, required for the NATO commitment VJTF23, within the planned timeframe.
The large ground station, Weilheim is an Airbus-operated ground station fully integrated into the SATCOMBw military satellite communications network and commanded by CIR Command. This ground station is one of three anchor stations in Germany and is used to connect systems located in the area of operations.
In June, also under the leadership of Airbus, the BSmM1 hü (4.6 m) and BSdynM2 mod (2.4 m) ground station types, were VJTF23 upgraded and presented to the troops, who tested them intensively and successfully during a two-week operational test. In the meantime, a series production is underway and 12 of the 26 ground stations planned for VJTF23 have already been modified and delivered.
All stations required for the start of military VJTF23 exercise operations are thus available to the Bundeswehr according to schedule.
"Airbus is proud to be able to significantly support the operational readiness and command and control capability of the Bundeswehr with the on-time implementation and the implemented functional enhancements" says Klaus Mutschler, SATCOMBw Program Manager at Airbus. "This was only possible due to a close and trustful cooperation between the procurer, the military user and the industry as well as the extraordinary and dedicated effort of all parties involved. For this, we would like to express our sincere thanks."
The SATCOMBw Level 2 satellite communications system forms the central backbone for military operations outside Germany or in uncovered operational areas.
In order to meet the increased requirements of VJTF2023, parts of the infrastructure were modernized and adapted to the state of the art.
The following is a brief overview of the performance enhancements introduced:
- Increasing transmission bandwidth from 3 x 10 Mbit/s to up to 40 Mbit/s. Fully meshed networks to enable direct communications between command posts and effective and economical use of military and commercial satellite transmission capacities through intelligent data rate management.
- Replacement of ISDN technology and introduction of state-of-the-art IP-based services (IP telephony and collaboration tools such as Jabber, Screenshare, Chat).
- modernization of the cross-sectional management module for central monitoring and control of the entire system, introduction of virtualized and redundant server services. Centralized network monitoring and control capabilities through BITS to support incident and change processes.
- ensuring efficient communication by means of an end-to-end QoS concept, dynamic IP routing and VS-NfD secured as well as multicast-capable encryption technologies in compliance with military information security requirements (CERTBw3).
- implementation of all logistical and security-related work that plays a central role for military use and supply, such as documentation, training and preparation of the necessary material bases.
More on SATCOMBw Level 2:
Missions for national defence as well as foreign missions of the German Armed Forces for stabilization or support are mostly carried out in regions that provide only unsecure communication links between the operational locations and the home base. Satellite-based communications networks can be set up quickly, reliably and without interception. This requires not only dedicated satellites, but also a large number of fixed and transportable ground stations as well as facilities for controlling and monitoring the communications networks. SATCOMBw Level 2 ensures the Bundeswehr complete autonomy, security and absolute reliability in satellite-based telecommunications. Airbus Defence and Space is the prime contractor responsible for the design, integration and delivery of the operational system, including flight operations of the two military satellites.
1 BSmM= Transportable Ground station-mid-Multiband for strategic deployment (deployable).
2 BsdynM= Transportable Ground station-dynamic-Multiband for tactical operations (rapidly deployable)
3 CERTBw= ComputerEmergencyResponseTeamBundeswehr