Hughes Network Systems begins shipment of HM400 SATCOM modems for GA-ASI's MQ-9B SkyGuardian



Broadband satellite networks and services provider Hughes Network Systems LLC has begun shipping its specialized, multiband HM400 SATCOM modems to General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc. (GA-ASI).

The HM400 SATCOM modems will be used to power beyond-line-of-sight (BLOS) communications for GA-ASI’s MQ-9B SkyGuardian Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA).

According to Hughes, its specialized Hughes HM400 delivers enhanced satellite-based communications for RPA’s, as it leverages an open system architecture and software-definable modem and waveform technology.

The Hughes HM400 modems support both military and commercial satellite frequencies, opening up applications such as search and rescue or disaster response for Predator-variant aircraft. 

“Hughes develops innovative technology to suit customer needs and, in this case, our HM400 was customized for GA-ASI’s resilient communications-on-the-move requirements for their SkyGuardian RPA,” explains Rick Lober, vice president and general manager of Hughes Defense and Intelligence Systems Division (DISD).

“We’re excited to be part of GA-ASI’s team and starting the delivery of HM400 units for their next-generation platform.”

Hughes notes that the HM400 is ideal for military operations in harsh or contested environmental conditions. Some of its benefits include frequency reuse for high operational efficiency, high data throughput rates for HD video and data transmissions, and a low Size Weight and Power (SWaP) profile.