UK troops in Afghanistan have been deployed with a new NATO satellite for enhanced communications channels for commanders on the front line.

The deployment follows an agreement between the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) and Nato over the ownership of the satellite earlier this year.

The Nato satellite provides two additional ultra-high-frequency (UHF) tactical communications channels for use in Afghanistan.

The new satellite technology provides an efficient and secure means of communication to commanders, operations centres and other units that provide crucial air support for front-line troops.

The UK MoD has three existing Skynet 5 series satellites that provide a worldwide satellite communications service.