Advanced Extremely High Frequency System (AEHF)
Advanced Extremely High Frequency System (AEHF)

Raytheon Awarded Contract for Advanced Extremely High Frequency-Terminals (AEHF-T)

Raytheon Co., Marlborough, Massachusetts, has been awarded a $960,000,000 contract for the Advanced Extremely High Frequency-Terminals (AEHF-T) Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center (AFNWC) requirement for interim contractor support, contractor logistics support, terminal depot activation, terminal hardware/software procurement and studies associated with support of the AEHF-T systems. Work is expected to be completed by Aug. 9, 2031. This award is the result of a sole source acquisition, and fiscal 2021 Space Force procurement funds in the amount of $1,345,000 are being obligated at time of award. AFNWC, Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, is the contracting activity.

Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) is a constellation of communications satellites operated by the United States Space Force. They are used to relay secure communications for the United States Armed Forces, the British Armed Forces, the Canadian Armed Forces, the Netherlands Armed Forces and the Australian Defence Force. The system consists of six satellites in geostationary orbits. The final satellite was launched on 26 March 2020. AEHF is backward compatible with, and replaces, the older Milstar system and will operate at 44 GHz uplink (Extremely high frequency (EHF) band) and 20 GHz downlink (Super high frequency (SHF) band).

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The AEHF system is a joint service communications system that provides survivable, global, secure, protected, and jam-resistant communications for high-priority military ground, sea and air assets. The U.S. Air Force’s Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) system is the nation’s next-generation military strategic and tactical relay system, which will deliver survivable, protected communications to U.S. forces and selected allies worldwide. When fully operational, the system will consist of four crosslinked satellites, a ground mission control center and user terminals.

The AEHF payload consists of processors, antennas, radio frequency subsystems and crosslinks. The payload delivers the new XDR (Extreme Data Rate) communications services, providing data rates up to 8.192 Mbps per user, Milstar LDR (Low Data Rate) services (75 – 2,400 bits per second), and Milstar MDR (Medium Data Rate) services (4.8 Kbps – 1.544 Mbps). AEHF delivers the flexible connectivity-on-demand needed to achieve 21st century objectives–swift, decisive outcomes based on information dominance. On-orbit processing provides the flexibility needed to rapidly establish and reconfigure networks to meet dynamic command and control requirements.

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