Apr 11, 2007
ViaSat Awarded $9.3 Million Contract by Northrop Grumman for Blue Force Tracking Network Upgrades
Improving Blue Force Tracking Network Ability to Reduce Friendly
Fire Incidents and Increase Situational Awareness
CARLSBAD, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 11, 2007--ViaSat, Inc. (Nasdaq:VSAT) has been selected to develop the satellite ground equipment for the follow-on Force XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below - Blue Force Tracking (FBCB2-BFT) satellite network upgrade. ViaSat will build a prototype network and terminals that are designed to increase network capacity and improve accuracy over the current system under an initial $9.3 million contract from Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC), the Army's system integrator for FBCB2. The FBCB2 network is a digital command and control system that provides battle command and situational awareness information from brigade down to the soldier/platform level using GPS navigation signals and communication satellites. ViaSat and the RF Communications Division of Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS) have cooperated in winning this effort. Work under the contract is scheduled to be complete in one year, and production and delivery of FBCB2-BFT replacement terminals may begin as early as 2008.
Current military operations require improvements in BFT network capacity, accuracy, and operating costs along with expanding coverage worldwide. The ViaSat approach is based on its ArcLight® spread spectrum technology which can dramatically reduce latency and increase the number of simultaneous users in high density operational environments. In addition, the terminal will be designed to operate in a dual mode that enables it to use commercial communication satellite resources, on-demand, in less dense environments.
"ViaSat has a strong track record developing new government and defense technologies that help solve challenging technology issues," said Mark Schwene, director of Strategic Initiatives for ViaSat Government Satcom Systems. "Our partnership with Northrop Grumman to upgrade the BFT network is based on our ability to successfully demonstrate a waveform that will fulfill new BFT requirements, while providing the Army with the lowest risk approach to rapidly getting this next generation capability to the warfighter."
System improvements to be implemented by ViaSat include providing a prototype network operations center, upgrading a satellite ground station hub, as well as design, development, test, and delivery of new transceiver prototypes for aircraft and land vehicles.
The FBCB2 system, built by Northrop Grumman's Mission Systems sector, relays information to users who can view regularly updated troop positions on screens in their vehicles and differentiate between friendly and enemy forces. The system also provides for the delivery of messages and other types of information to ground vehicles including tanks, armored personnel carriers, and infantry fighting vehicles, as well as U.S. Army rotary wing aircraft.
About Harris Corporation (www.harris.com)
Harris RF Communications Division is a leading supplier of secure voice and data communications products, systems, and networks to military, government, and commercial organizations worldwide. Harris Corporation is an international communications and information technology company serving government and commercial markets in more than 150 countries.
About ViaSat (www.viasat.com)
ViaSat produces innovative satellite and other communication products that enable fast, secure, and efficient communications to any location. The Company provides networking products and managed network services for enterprise IP applications; is a key supplier of network-centric military communications and encryption technologies to the U.S. government; and is the primary technology partner for gateway and customer-premises equipment for consumer and mobile satellite broadband services. The company's four wholly owned subsidiaries, US Monolithics, Efficient Channel Coding, Enerdyne Technologies, and Intelligent Compression Technologies, design and produce complementary products such as monolithic microwave integrated circuits, DVB-S2 satellite communication components, video data link systems, and data acceleration and compression products. ViaSat has locations in Carlsbad, CA, and Duluth, GA, along with its Comsat Laboratories division in Germantown, MD. Additional field offices are located in Boston, MA, Baltimore, MD, Washington DC, Australia, China, India, Italy, and Spain.
Safe Harbor Statement
Portions of this release, particularly statements about the performance and deliveries of ViaSat products and technology, may contain forward-looking statements regarding future events and are subject to risks and uncertainties. ViaSat wishes to caution you that there are some factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, including but not limited to: contractual problems, product defects, manufacturing issues or delays, regulatory issues, technologies not being developed according to anticipated schedules, or that do not perform according to expectations; and increased competition and other factors affecting the telecommunications industry generally. The Company refers you to the documents it files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, specifically the section titled Risk Factors in the Company's Form 10-K, which contain and identify other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in our projections or forward-looking statements. Stockholders and other readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date on which they are made. We undertake no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements.
Comsat Labs and Comsat Laboratories are tradenames of ViaSat, Inc. Neither Comsat Labs nor Comsat Laboratories is affiliated with COMSAT Corporation. "Comsat" is a registered trademark of COMSAT Corporation.
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SOURCE: ViaSat, Inc.