SATCOM Control Software put through its paces at Talisman Sabre 2019

Exercise Talisman Sabre 2019 (TS19) is a bilateral combined Australian and United States (US) training activity. TS19 is designed to practise respective military services and associated agencies in planning and conducting Combined and Joint Task Force operations, and improve combat readiness and interoperability between Australian and US forces.

One aspect of this is high-data rate, beyond line of site communications, a capability that is significantly provided by the US Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) system. WGS is the backbone of the US and Australian military’s global satellite communications providing flexible and high-capacity communications. Australia is an International Partner of WGS through an MoU which saw Australia fund the 6th satellite in the constellation.

Australia accesses the constellation through a network of groundstations deployed around Australia and the world. These groundstations are operated remotely from a central location using a system designed, developed and deployed by Clearbox Systems known as the Ground Segment Management System (GSMS). The GSMS is an innovative, software-based solution that provides remote monitoring and control, spectrum monitoring and management, and service management covering the lifecycle of WGS services including scheduling, activation, health monitoring, deactivation and logging.

Deployments of the GSMS recently completed significant upgrades to address emerging operational requirements, incorporate new technologies and resolve obsolescence issues. The upgraded GSMS entered service in time to be operated for TS19 enabling the WGS capability for the 34,000 military personnel, 30 ships and 200 aircraft from US and Australian forces as well as the UK, Canada, Japan and New Zealand.

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