Tactical Uses for Commercial Satellite Network



In June 2009 the Navy awarded Iridium a five-year development contract valued at up to $21.7 million for Phase Two of the DTCS program, also known as “Netted Iridium”, to provide in-orbit upgrades to the satellites and ground infrastructure to expand the footprint of DTCS nets from 100 to 250 miles, and to permit more than 2,000 nets to be activated simultaneously on the satellite network. The upgrades are expected to be completed by the end of December 2009.

ITT Wins $9.7 Million to Supply “Netted Iridium” Tactical Radio Handsets

The ITT Corporation has received a $9.7 million U.S. Navy contract to supply 1,450 Iridium-based handheld tactical satellite communication devices for use by U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. The wireless transceivers are providing push-to-talk communications utilizing the Iridium satellite network. The devices, designated Distributed Tactical Communications Systems – Radio Only (DTCS-RO), will be delivered by March 2010. According to Lt. Gen. John Campbell, USAF (Ret.), executive vice president for government programs at Iridium, the DTCS fulfills an immediate mission-critical requirement for beyond-line-of-sight and over-the-horizon communications in mountainous terrain. The new handsets will provide such capability. I