Orbit Communications Systems announced that Rafael Advanced Defense Systems placed a $5.5 million order for Orbit’s MPT 87 airborne satcom terminals and AL-4018 ground pedestals for integration with Israel Aerospace Industries’ Heron TP unmanned aircraft.
Orbit’s integrated solution of onboard Multi-Purpose Terminal (MPT 87) satcom terminals and AL-4018 high-speed ground pedestals will provide both beyond-line-of-sight (BLOS) and line-of-sight (LOS) connectivity and tracking for IAI’s next-generation medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). Delivery of the Orbit equipment is expected in 2019 and 2020.
“Tasked with providing both BLOS and LOS connectivity aboard the Heron TP, we were looking for the most reliable and field-proven solutions available,” noted Yoav Wermuth, Head of the Communications Division at Rafael. “That is why we chose Orbit’s BLOS communication components for the aircraft, as well as for the ground stations.”
“Orbit maintains an excellent track record in satcom and pedestal solutions, with hundreds of long-term data link solutions spread across the globe,” added Ben Weinberger, CEO of Orbit. “Our agility in meeting the technical challenges of this particular project was a key factor in us winning this ‘triple play’. On top of the recently announced contract for the audio management system (AMS) on the same vehicle, Orbit is now providing the onboard satcom terminal and the ground line-of-site communications system.”
Orbit’s Multi-Purpose Terminal (MPT) delivers satellite-based broadband communications to both fixed and rotary-wing aircraft as well as UAVs. Built to military standard (MIL-STD), it features optimized Size, Weight and Power, and is ruggedized to withstand the challenging environments of mission- and business-critical platforms. Designed to fit the tight spaces allocated to airborne communications equipment, the terminal is certified for a broad range of aircraft. Orbit’s MPT series includes 30-, 60- and 87-cm (12-, 24- and 34-inch) terminals, as well as the recently announced 46-cm (18-inch) terminal developed for Inmarsat and compatible with Global Express (GX) and government Wideband Global Satcom (WGS) systems.
The IAI Heron TP is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) developed by the MALAT division of Israel Aerospace Industries. The UAV is an advanced version of the IAI Heron.