EADS builds cryptographic units for British satellites

NEWPORT, U.K., 8 June 2005. EADS Defence and Security Systems Ltd. (EADS DS), has now delivered the first 27 of 1064 new High-Grade cryptographic CLERISY production units for the Skynet 5 system, providing continuity of satellite communications services to British forces.

Jun 8th, 2005

NEWPORT, U.K., 8 June 2005. EADS Defence and Security Systems Ltd. (EADS DS), has now delivered the first 27 of 1064 new High-Grade cryptographic CLERISY production units for the Skynet 5 system, providing continuity of satellite communications services to British forces.

CLERISY encrypts and decrypts traffic for transmission between locations within the Skynet 5 Communications System. Normally requiring five years from concept to production, the CLERISY project has achieved delivery in just two and a half years.

"Achieving the exacting High-Grade standards required for CLERISY against such a tight project deadline was enabled through good project management, a very proactive risk management process, team leadership and the dedication of the CLERISY team," explains John Pratt, Skynet 5, CMF & CLERISY Project manager, EADS DS Ltd. "The team worked tirelessly to achieve the end goal, always proactive, always ready to solve the next problem and ready to put in that extra effort that was vital to keeping the project on track."

EADS DS Ltd is now committed to completing production throughout 2005, delivering the remaining CLERISY units for Skynet 5 as contracted.

SkyNet 5 is the next-generation U.K. military satellite communications system. The Skynet 5 programme contract was signed by the EADS subsidiary Paradigm Secure Communications Ltd. and the UK MOD in October 2003. The innovative Skynet 5 contract has seen Paradigm taking ownership and operation of the MOD's existing Skynet 4 satellites, with design and production well under way through its subcontractor EADS Astrium for the next generation military hardened Skynet 5 satellites. These are due to be operational in 2007 and 2008, providing the MOD with turnkey satellite communications services, to be purchased by the MOD as needed.

CLERISY is intended for use within the Skynet 5 Communications System, connecting U.K. users and U.K. military and government users overseas to allow information to be passed to and between them. This information requires encryption prior to transmission. Skynet 5 comprises a ground infrastructure that has access to communications satellites and remote satellite terminals, and has the means to manage all of these system elements.

The new High-Grade cryptographic CLERISY units utilise inter-alia the U.S. Electronic Key Management System (EKMS) standard protocols.

The EKMS is a key management, COMSEC material distribution, and logistics support system consisting of interoperable service and civil agency key management systems. NSA established the EKMS program to meet multiple objectives, which include supplying electronic key to COMSEC devices in a secure and timely manner and providing COMSEC managers with an automated system capable of ordering, generation, production, distribution, storage, security, accounting, and access control. Other features of EKMS will include automated auditing capabilities to monitor and record security-relevant events, account registration, and extensive system and operator privilege management techniques that will provide flexible access control to sensitive key, data, and functions within the system. The EKMS components and standards will facilitate interoperability and commonality.

EADS Defence and Security Systems, with revenues of about 5.4 billion in 2004 and roughly 24,000 employees across 10 nations, forms the defence pole within EADS. It offers integrated systems solutions to the new challenges confronting armed forces and homeland security units. It is active in the areas of military aircraft, missile systems, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) systems with manned and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), battlefield management systems, defence electronics, sensors and avionics, and related services. For more information, see www.eads.com.

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