ThinKom Solutions, Inc. has developed a new product variant of its VICTS aero satellite communication antennas enabling more flexible installation choices and allowing for smaller distributed and embedded phased-array applications.
The new product variant, which targets government and military beyond-line-of-sight (BLOS) satellite communication markets, integrates the VICTS antenna, antenna control unit (ACU), and power supply (PS) electronics into a single low-profile small-footprint package. This eliminates the need for a separate line-replaceable unit (LRU) for the ACU/PS. Further, the unique high-efficiency and low-power characteristics of the VICTS phased array fully eliminate the need for other bulky and power-consuming LRUs, such as power-conditioning units, heat-exchanger units, and external RF/power/cooling manifolds.
The incorporation of the ACU into the base of the antenna does not result in an increase in mounting footprint and maintains the antenna’s highly favored low-profile characteristics. The antenna measures less than 9 cm in total height while retaining the flight-proven, high-reliability design and product features for which the VICTS antennas have become known.
An added benefit of the new product variant is enabling the transmit and receive antennas to be co-located or alternatively mounted in remotely separated platform locations. This maximizes application flexibility in terms of packaging, weight balance, and other airframe and operational considerations.
ThinKom has begun limited low-rate production of the new VICTS antenna product for a U.S. government customer. Initial units are currently going through integration, with formal qualifications scheduled to start later in 2021.