Lockheed Martin AMF JTRS team demonstrates Joint Tactical Radio onboard AH-64D Apache helicopter

MESA, Ariz., 26 Jan. 2011. A Joint Tactical Radio Internet Protocol (IP) communications network has transmitted data and video to ground-based radios from its first airborne platform. The Lockheed Martin Airborne & Maritime/Fixed Station Joint Tactical Radio System (AMF JTRS) team, with support from Boeing, conducted the test of this new capability to connect joint forces on the battlefield. The event also marked the first airborne demonstration of AMF JTRS onboard the AH-64D Apache (Block III architecture) helicopter.

Posted by Courtney E. Howard
Posted by Courtney E. Howard

MESA, Ariz., 26 Jan. 2011. A Joint Tactical Radio Internet Protocol (IP) communications network has transmitted data and video to ground-based radios from its first airborne platform. The Lockheed Martin Airborne & Maritime/Fixed Station Joint Tactical Radio System (AMF JTRS) team, with support from Boeing, conducted the test of this new capability to connect joint forces on the battlefield. The event also marked the first airborne demonstration of AMF JTRS onboard the AH-64D Apache (Block III architecture) helicopter.

AMF JTRS will be a secure (NSA Type 1), software-programmable, multi-band/multi-mode, mobile ad-hoc network that will give joint U.S. forces simultaneous voice, data, and video communications. With its ability to reprogram and configure communications through a software-centric architecture, AMF provides an affordable forward and backwards compatible solution for the DOD.

"These early AMF JTRS integration activities onto the Apache Block III test platform validate the technical maturity of the system hardware and software," says Mark Norris, vice president for Joint Tactical Network Solutions with Lockheed Martin's IS&GS-Defense. "It underscores the critical role that AMF JTRS will play by providing IP networking, as well as the ability to dynamically use multiple waveforms as mission needs require and the ability to cross band and interconnect legacy systems."

During the demonstration at Boeing's Mesa, Ariz., facility, Lockheed Martin's team integrated an AMF JTRS Small Airborne Joint Tactical Radio enabled with the Wideband Networking Waveform (WNW) onto an Apache helicopter. Ground and aerial nodes interfaced in a dynamic joint tactical mobile ad hoc network using IP-based communications, according to a representative. AMF JTRS then transmitted live streaming video and real-time, situational-awareness data from the Apache's onboard infrared camera to multiple ground-based radios.

Lockheed Martin's AMF JTRS team plans an extensive "live fly" exercise with multiple aircraft and ground nodes this year. The Lockheed Martin AMF JTRS team includes: BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon.

AMF JTRS will be integrated into airborne, shipboard, and fixed-station platforms. The radio network includes multiple configurations providing two-channel Small Airborne Joint Tactical Radio (for airborne) and four-channel Maritime/Fixed Station Joint Tactical Radio (for shipboard and fixed-station platforms). Over the program's lifetime, an expected 28 waveforms (new and legacy) will be incorporated into the AMF JTRS network.

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