Orbit to Supply Airborne Satcom, Ground Pedestal Solutions for Heron TP

Rafael placed a $5.5 million order for Orbit’s MPT 87 airborne satcom terminals and AL-4018 ground pedestals for integration into IAI’s Heron TP MALE UAV

Heron TP (Photo: IAI)

Orbit Communications Systems, a provider of airborne communications and satellite-tracking maritime and ground-station solutions, announced that Rafael Advanced Defense Systems placed a $5.5 million order for Orbit’s MPT 87 airborne satcom terminals and AL-4018 ground pedestals for integration into Israel Aerospace Industries’ advanced Heron TP medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) MALE UAV.

Orbit’s integrated solution of onboard Multi-Purpose Terminal (MPT 87) satcom terminals and AL-4018 high-speed ground pedestals will provide both beyond-line-of-sight (BLOS) and line-of-sight (LOS) connectivity and tracking for the Heron TP. Delivery of the Orbit equipment is expected in 2019 and 2020.

“Tasked with providing both BLOS and LOS connectivity aboard the Heron TP, we were looking for the most reliable and field-proven solutions available,” noted Yoav Wermuth, Head of the Communications Division at Rafael. “That is why we chose Orbit’s BLOS communication components for the aircraft, as well as for the ground stations.”

“Orbit maintains an excellent track record in satcom and pedestal solutions, with hundreds of long-term data link solutions spread across the globe,” added Ben Weinberger, CEO of Orbit. “Our agility in meeting the technical challenges of this particular project was a key factor in us winning this ‘triple play.’ On top of the recently announced contract for the audio management system (AMS) on the same vehicle, Orbit is now providing the onboard satcom terminal and the ground line-of-site communications system.”