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August 18, 2021

Northrop validates advanced gateway system’s open architecture

Northrop and L3Harris have collaborated to test new communications capabilities as part of a POC demonstration.

Northrop Grumman has conducted a proof of concept (POC) demonstration to validate its advanced gateway system’s open architecture nature.

During testing, Northrop Grumman’s platform-agnostic gateway systems were integrated with an L3Harris Technologies-developed High-Capacity Backbone (HCB) capability.

The demonstration combined existing gateway translations across data links and artificial intelligence (AI) enhanced networking, enabling the company to demonstrate a live over-the-air test.

In the latest trial, the L3Harris-built HCB system used active electronically scanned array (AESA) apertures, capable of supporting 600Mbps.

The HCB gateway capabilities is expected to allow data to flow nearly 300 times faster than the speeds that were previously available.

Northrop Grumman network solutions director Ian Reynolds said: “With this successful demonstration, we have taken HCB-enabled gateways from concept to reality in less than one year.

“Our platform-agnostic, HCB-enabled gateway systems are designed to deliver the enhanced connectivity and secure processing speeds needed to introduce a wide range of new capabilities that will be critical for maintaining a technological advantage in network-centric, all-domain environments.”

The latest demonstration marked a new milestone in delivering an Open Mission System and Open Communications System (OMS-OCS) capabilities needed for the US Department of Defense’s (DoD) Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) network using industry-standard hardware.

According to Northrop, the advanced technology will be used to collect data from the HCB network to rapidly share actionable information across air, land, sea and space domains.

Northrop’s HCB-enabled gateway systems will improve situational awareness for troops operating in JADC2 scenarios.

L3Harris US Air Force programmes vice-president and general manager Ron Fehlen said: “As the premier provider of high capacity directional CDL networks, L3Harris looks forward to supporting the DoD’s JADC2 efforts with future HCB team demonstrations.

“Our resilient communications, airborne fielded datalinks, and high bandwidth allows a High-Capacity Backbone to move massive data rapidly across networks and create path diversity over the tactical edge to keep warfighters connected.”

Northrop’s advanced networking technologies, including its HCB gateway systems, help soldiers and military branches to easily communicate and securely share a ‘Common Operational Picture’.

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