T2C2 SATCOM terminal tested in Alaska
The US Army has successfully conducted an operational test of its inflatable Transportable Tactical Command Communications (T2C2) satellite communications (SATCOM) terminal, in temperatures below negative 10 degrees in Alaska, the United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) announced on 18 April.
The T2C2 is being developed to provide early entry and remote edge of the battlefield mission command within the US Army's tactical network. Its variants - heavy and lite - are inflatable, providing units with a larger antenna, increasing capability and bandwidth efficiency in a solution half the size of current solutions. These SATCOM terminals can resist extreme weather conditions and can also be air dropped into theatre.
An early initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) for the T2C2 programme was directed in support of the army's initiative to reduce the time required to deliver the capability to the army. The results of the IOT&E will support a full rate production decision expected in late 2017.
T2C2 is quick to set-up and easy to operate. As the army continues its effort to reduce field service representative support for increased efficiencies, T2C2 will be fully operated, supported and maintained by the unit.
The army will be able to deploy T2C2 to support joint forcible entry missions, with soldiers able to set the system up quickly to provide continuity of mission command during the initial phases of an operation. As operations mature and follow-on forces bring in larger network assets, commanders can extend the battle space to its edge using the T2C2 heavy to support company-size forward operating bases. The agile high-bandwidth T2C2 can directly support a unit's ability to send smaller elements forward, leaving larger, less manoeuvrable tactical operations centres and network equipment safely in the rear or even at home station.
Soldiers in remote locations can leverage T2C2 to use mission command systems such as Command Post of the Future, Joint Battle Command-Platform, Advanced Field Artillery Targeting and Direction System and Distribute Common Ground System-Army. T2C2 also enables whiteboard, chat, video and video teleconference, and voice over internet protocol that require significant data.
Special team-sized elements, such as combat camera and human intelligence teams, also require high-bandwidth network capability to send large data files like photos, geospatial imagery and video. These smaller elements are in line to be fielded with the T2C2 lite variant to support their missions. The versatility of T2C2 increases a commander's operational flexibility and provides the real-time situational awareness needed to make quick battlefield decisions.
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