NATO adopts high-data-rate waveform for tactical communications
NATO has adopted the ESSOR (European Secure SOftware defined Radio) High Data Rate Waveform (HDRWF) as the STANAG 5651 interoperability standard for tactical communications with radio platforms.
The ESSOR HDRWF, a broadband waveform which operates in the Ultra High Frequency (UHF) band between 225 MHz and 400 MHz, can process data rates up to one megabit per second. The waveform features real-time automatic adaptation capability and can maintain voice and IP data in Mobile Ad-hoc Network (MANET) mode.
ESSOR HDRWF, which includes multi-hop push-to-talk, radio silence mode and cohabitation (spectrum sharing) features, will now be available for all NATO member countries for secure and high-speed tactical communications. The network maintains full operations even when global navigation satellite signals are unavailable.
Lino Laganà, president and general manager of a4ESSOR, a joint venture comprised of six European companies, remarked that NATO’s ratification had concluded a development cycle that was ‘conceived according to a visionary approach to interoperability’.
‘The adoption of the ESSOR HDRWF waveform has been a source of great satisfaction for our international team, which is proud to see its work recognised by the most important military organisation in the world,’ Laganà said.
‘This achievement is a further incentive for us to continue to develop new narrowband and air-ground-air waveforms, an area in which a4ESSOR has been engaged since 2021, with the same winning approach to interoperability and in the interest of European countries and NATO,’ he added.
The HDRWF waveform achieved validation by passing interoperability tests last year and has since been integrated into the radios of Germany, France, Italy, Finland, Spain and Poland.
According to a4ESSOR, the waveform incorporates two ground-centric waveforms (EHDRWF and ENBWF), one air-ground-air waveform (E3DWF), a feasibility study for a SATCOM waveform (ESATWF) and ‘propaedeutic engineering activities for the development of a new generation Multifunctional Information Distribution System (ESSOR MIDS) for a tactical data link based on ESSOR architecture’.
The a4ESSOR consortium comprises Germany’s Rohde & Schwarz, French firm Thales, Finland’s Bittium, Spain’s Indra, Leonardo Spa of Italy and Radmor SA from Poland. ESSOR, meanwhile, has been co-funded by the European Commission.
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