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February 22, 2024 | International, Aerospace

Philippines hints at fresh fighter fleet amid negotiations with Sweden

The two governments are now ironing out the final terms of defense cooperation based on a memorandum of understanding signed last year.

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  • TNO has signed a contract with ESA to start phase 2 of TOmCAT

    July 8, 2020 | International, C4ISR

    TNO has signed a contract with ESA to start phase 2 of TOmCAT

    July 2, 2020 - TNO has signed a contract with ESA to demonstrate cutting-edge optical communication technologies for future terabit-per-second telecom satellites. The TOmCAT project (Terabit Optical Communication Adaptive Terminal) will enable high-throughput laser communication between ground stations and satellites. This project is Phase 2 of TOmCAT, which started in 2017. It brings together key players in the Space and High-Tech industries, including: TNO, Airbus Defence & Space Netherlands, FSO Instruments (consortium partner Demcon), Hittech Multin (NL), Celestia-STS (NL), MPB Communications (CA), Airbus DS SAS (FR) and Eutelsat (FR), SES (LU). TOmCAT is a co-funded activity in which TNO, the companies involved, the Canadian Space Agency and the Netherlands Space Office invest through the ESAs ARTES Strategic Programme Line ScyLight. Key technologies include high-bandwidth adaptive optics, thermally stable opto-mechanics, high-power photonics, and high-throughput optical transceivers. TNO Space aims to enable secure broadband connectivity that will support the growing demand for data and increase communication efficiency. We also help stimulate economic growth in the Netherlands and Europe by enabling companies to realise new products, generate new business and improve their competitive position. TOmCAT is one example of these goals in practice. HOW DOES TNO CONTRIBUTE TO TOMCAT? TNO brings all parties together and integrates all expertise to: 1) Design the end-to-end Optical Feeder Link for high-throughput satellites. 2) Build and test cutting-edge technologies required for future Terabit Optical Ground Stations. 3) Build an end-to-end Optical Ground Terminal demonstrator and test it in a 10 km ground-to-ground link. This will show the technical feasibility of future terabit-per-second laser communication between ground and satellite terminals. TNO considers development in the TOmCAT project to be a major and important step towards the realisation of commercial Optical Ground Terminals and Optical Ground Stations for high-throughput Optical Feeder Links. Furthermore, TNO will work in the coming period, in parallel with TOmCAT phase 2, with Airbus Defence & Space Netherlands on business development and, in collaboration, position Airbus DS NL as future Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEMer) of these Optical Ground Terminals and Optical Ground Stations. TECHNOLOGY AND APPLICATION TOmCAT is a technology development project with the end goal of developing a commercial optical ground station product. With high-data-rate laser links, this ground station can communicate with the next generation of Very High Throughput Satellites. One of the innovative elements of TOmCAT is its ability to pre-correct the laser light with adaptive optics. When light moves between the surface of the Earth and space, it gets distorted due to the fluctuations in the atmosphere. TOmCAT measures the distortion of the received laser light from the satellite, and by applying the inverse of this distortion to the transmitted light, a robust communication link can be established. In order to enable this, high speed adaptive optics is required. An important objective for the project is to build a demonstrator to test and prove this concept. View source version on TNO:

  • UK Army robotics receive £66m boost

    March 6, 2019 | International, Aerospace, Land

    UK Army robotics receive £66m boost

    The Defence Secretary has committed £66m of defence's new multi-million-pound Transformation Fund to fast-track military robotic projects onto the battlefield this year. It was announced today at the Autonomous Warrior Exploitation Conference at the Science Museum, Kensington that the British Army will benefit from: New mini-drones, providing troops with an eye-in-the-sky to give them greater awareness to outmanoeuvre enemies on the battlefield. Systems to fit Army fighting vehicles with remote-control capability, so they can be pushed ahead of manned vehicles and used to test the strength of enemy defences. New autonomous logistics vehicles which will deliver vital supplies to troops in warzones, helping remove soldiers from dangerous resupply tasks so they can focus on combat roles. Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: This announcement is a clear demonstration of how our Armed Forces are reaping the benefits from our new multi-million Transformation Fund. Each of these new technologies will enhance our Army's capabilities whilst reducing the risk to our personnel and I'm delighted we will be revolutionising frontline technology by the end of the year. The MOD has always embraced pioneering technology and this fund will ensure the UK stays at the forefront of global military capabilities and ahead of our adversaries. The injection of funding from the new £160m Transformation Fund will see some of this equipment set to deploy to the likes of Estonia, Afghanistan and Iraq before the end of the year. The Defence Secretary will also look to make a further £340m available as part of the Spending Review. The investment comes after the Army tested a range of projects as part of the biggest military robot exercise in British history at the end of last year, Exercise Autonomous Warrior. Yesterday, the Defence Secretary visited 16 Air Assault Brigade in Colchester which will be among the recipients of the new battlefield technologies. He discussed how the new equipment will benefit troops on the ground to help increase their safety and combat effectiveness. The Brigade is specially trained and equipped to deploy by parachute, helicopter and air-landing. Its core role is to maintain the Air Assault Task Force, a battlegroup held at high readiness to deploy worldwide for a full spectrum of missions. Chief of the General Staff Sir Mark Carleton-Smith said: Rapid adaptation is an essential ingredient for success on the battlefield. The fielding of the next generation of armoured fighting vehicles and ground-breaking robotic and autonomous systems will keep the British Army at the cutting edge of battlefield technology, improving our lethality, survivability and competitive advantage. Assistant Head of Capability Strategy and Force Development, Colonel Peter Rowell said: Robotic and autonomous systems make our troops more effective; seeing more, understanding more, covering a greater area and being more lethal. They unshackle them from the resupply loop. These are game-changing capabilities; and not just for combat operations. They are equally useful in humanitarian and disaster relief operations. After securing an extra £1.8bn for defence and overseeing the Modernising Defence Programme, the Defence Secretary has dedicated millions of pounds to transforming defence, arming the British military with innovative technology through fast-tracking new projects. The MOD is embracing transformation at an ever-faster rate and the Transformation Fund is focused on investments in truly high-tech innovation that will create the armed forces of the future.

  • Army using simulations to work out networking kinks ahead of Project Convergence 21

    October 13, 2021 | International, Land

    Army using simulations to work out networking kinks ahead of Project Convergence 21

    The Army's big lesson from Project Convergence 20 was that it's harder to network things together than the service realized.

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