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Marine Corps confirms that modernized satellite communications system performs better than anticipated

Field assessments of the Mobile User Objective System reveal that the subsequent generation satellite communications systems are working beyond expectations.

Designed by Lockheed Martin, MUOS restored the legacy UHF Follow-On (UFO) system to offer narrowband communications. Having four satellites and an orbit in geosynchronous, the $7 billion systems could offer more than ten times the bandwidth UFO’s capacity. The fifth and the last MUOS satellite was sendoff back in 2016, and in October 2019, the United States Navy confirmed that the system was set for full operational use.

Lt. Col. Jeff Decker, who is Marine Corps System Command’s Ground Radios product boss, stated that MUOS offers them 3G potential via satellite constellations. He added that it is related to a cell phone capacity in the atmosphere that envelops the whole world.

The Marine Corps commenced field testing AN/PRC-117G broadcasting systems with renewed firmware in March 2019. One of the three antenna kits could link to MUOS with the I Marine Expeditionary Force at Twentynine Palms located in California, for measurement. Marine Corps confirms that the updated MUOS version offers increased networked stability throughout the missions. 

The system testing included the Marines taking part in fire support imitation exercises where they made use of MUOS in coordinating mortar support and airstrike as well as scenario-based exercises where MUOS was used for practicing command and control operations.

Sgt. Mason J. Roy, who is a video boss for Communication Strategy and Operations at IMEF, stated that the exercises went quite well according to him. He added that the idea that they could send a photo or a video from the meadow to a control station with the use of MUOS is a clear indication that they could swiftly update commanders with image information. The instructions could potentially regulate battle spaces to endorse mission accomplishment and guard their troops. 

The Marine Corps testifies that feedback coming from the efforts was overpoweringly positive, with the performance of the system going beyond the expectations. Decker particularly praised the system for its adaptability and showing no performance gaps or any technological difficulties.

Decker stated that they performed experiments on the system through user assessment exercises to comprehend not only what the competence could perform on paper, but also how they could use it in enhancing lethality and offer redundancy across the Fleet Marine Forces. He added that they try to think of anything that might be a possible matter for the warfighter.