Expand Networks’ technology deployed by Air Force
Expand Networks announced today that its wireless accelerators are part of the U.S. Air Force’s airborne battle-management platform, or Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) beyond-line-of-sight communicationsystem, forapplication acceleration and bandwidth optimization.
The company was asked by the Air Force to show how its technology communicated over MRSAT systems or low-bandwidth tactical networks. They pitched the 4820 and 6940 accelerators, vetted them through primary contractor Northrop Grumman and then deployed them the field, said Howard Teicher, the company’s vice president for public sector and satellite markets.
The accelerators are hardware- and software-based, and the combination supports Joint STARS communications architecture by providing the beyond-line-of-sight system with accelerated WAN performance to minimize bandwidth requirements for IP traffic, Teicher said. The system offers quality of service based on the space communications protocol standards (SCPS) protocol—a NASA and Department of Defense file-handling protocol for uploading of spacecraft commands and software and the downloading of collections of telemetry data.
“This is a mechanism that provides for enhanced communications over satellite,” Teicher said. “It allows for TCP protocol to perform over high-latency links, so a combination of these techniques integrated into our appliance provides an enhancement to application performance across the WAN. Our solution is unique, because it works at the IP level.”
The accelerators also meet the retransmission control protocol, a data-protection mechanism and a networking protocol that supports connectionless and connection-oriented routing of messages through networks containing space or other wireless data links, Teicher said.