Australia uses waveform technology to deliver satellite-enabled push-to-talk capabilities

by Oishee Majumdar

In a recent demonstration to the ADF, Fleet Space Technologies applied the Beagle waveform technology to deliver push-to-talk capabilities using its Centauri 4 LEO satellite (pictured). (Fleet Space Technologies)

South Australia-based Fleet Space Technologies has used communications waveform technology Beagle to demonstrate satellite-enabled push-to-talk (PTT) capabilities to the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

Janes understands Beagle is a design framework developed by Australian company Safety from Space to generate efficient radio frequency (RF) signals that can transmit small and large amounts of data. The radio signals are carried on electromagnetic waves and the data is encoded and mapped using modulation techniques to determine the form. The waveform generated is specified by a complex mathematical representation.

The Beagle waveform was applied on Fleet Space's Centauri 4 low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite to deliver tactical PTT during the demonstration, which was announced by the company on 12 March. The demonstration was conducted as part of Defence Space Command's (DSpC's) ASCEND2LEO programme, which aims to develop a LEO satellite communication (satcom) system leveraging Centauri satellites to deliver tactical voice and data transmission where connectivity is limited.

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Australia awards contract for P-8A upgrades

by Akhil Kadidal

The Boeing P-8A is an important platform for Australia. The RAAF uses the aircraft for widespread maritime surveillance activities and for long-range submarine tracking. This photograph shows an RAAF P-8A that was deployed at Roland Garros Airport, Reunion Island, in March 2024. (Commonwealth of Australia)

Boeing has been awarded a AUD139.5 million (USD90.1 million) contract to upgrade the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF's) P-8A Poseidon fleet.

The contract, announced on 15 April, will deliver Increment 3 Block 2 software, systems, and sensor upgrades to the RAAF's P-8A fleet, improving their anti-submarine warfare (ASW), maritime strike, and intelligence-collection capabilities, according to Boeing.

The upgrade programme will commence from September 2026, the company said. The RAAF currently operates 12 P-8As, out of a total of 14 ordered, according to Janes inventory data.

“The first two aircraft to undergo the Increment 3 modification will be upgraded in Jacksonville, Florida,” Boeing said, adding that the remainder will be upgraded by Boeing Defence Australia at RAAF Base Edinburgh.

Two new P-8As (the balance of the order of 14) are scheduled to be handed over to the RAAF in 2024 and 2025, according to Boeing. Janes

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UDT 2024: IAI/Aerotor unveil APUS 25 long-range endurance quadcopter

by Kate Tringham

The APUS 25 prototype on display at UDT 2024. (Janes/Kate Tringham)

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and Aerotor Unmanned Systems have joined forces to develop a novel unmanned quadcopter designed for long-range endurance missions.

The new platform, named APUS 25, was showcased for the first time at the Undersea Defence Technology (UDT) 2024 conference and exhibition, which was held in London from 8 to 10 April.

Speaking to Janes at UDT 2024, an IAI spokesperson said the vehicle incorporates new technology developed by Aerotor that promises greater flight endurance, payload carrying capacity, and manoeuvrability than comparable unmanned quadcopters on the market.

Existing multirotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) typically have electric motors for each rotor that enable them to independently change their revolutions per minute (RPMs) for manoeuvres.

The Apus concept developed by Aerotor, however, introduces a new steering method based on a central heavy fuel internal combustion engine that powers the four blades working at a fixed RPM with a variable pitch rotor system.

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Singapore's fleet of H225M, CH-47F helicopters attain full operational capability

by Ridzwan Rahmat

A Republic of Singapore Air Force H225M and CH-47F seen here at a ceremony where full operational capability was declared for both aircraft types. (Janes/Ridzwan Rahmat)

The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has declared full operational capability (FOC) for its fleet of H225M medium-lift helicopters and CH-47F heavy-lift helicopters.

A ceremony to mark the milestone was held at the Sembawang Air Base on 11 April. It was attended by the country's Minister for Defence, Ng Eng Hen, who described the aircraft as assets that would enhance the Singapore Armed Forces' (SAF's) military lift capabilities.

“They will strengthen the RSAF's ability to undertake a wide range of operations, including search-and-rescue operations, aeromedical evacuations, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief,” Ng said in his speech to mark the milestone.

“More importantly, these two new helicopter platforms will enhance cross-service integration, allowing the RSAF to better support our army and navy troops in equipment lifts,” he added.

The H225Ms will be operated by the RSAF's 125 and 126 squadrons and are progressively replacing its ageing fleet of AS332M Super Puma airframes, which have been in service since 1985.

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