AT&T, Lockheed Martin demo high-speed data transfer using private 5G

The pair transferred Black Hawk data to the 5G.MIL pilot network using AT&T’s 5G private network

AT&T partnered with Lockheed Martin to test helicopter data transfer at the aerospace and defense company’s headquarters in Stratford, Connecticut. The companies transferred data from a Sikorsky UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter to Lockheed’s 5G.MIL pilot network using AT&T’s 5G private network.

The idea behind the 5G.MIL solutions, which integrate military communications with tactical gateway capabilities (“.MIL”) and 5G technology, is to deliver “prompt and decisive action on the battlefield,” according to the company.

In the demo, the pair said that they were able to securely and quickly transfer data stored in the Integrated Vehicle Health Management System (IVHMS) cartridge on the Black Hawk helicopter to Waterton, Colorado, for real-time analysis.

The IVHMS cartridge uses hundreds of on-board sensors to monitor, diagnose and evaluates detailed aircraft-generated data as a result of flight maneuvers. It also captures aircraft limit exceedances on airframe and dynamic components and monitors temperature and vibration of key components on the aircraft. Once captured, this data is assessed to ensure the aircraft is safe, reliable and ready to fly.

The process of removing the data cartirade and transporting it to an operations center for extraction and analysis takes about 30 minutes. AT&T’s 5G private cellular technology, claimed the companies, reduces the time required to less than five minutes.

“The test demonstrated that wireless 5G technologies on the flight line can support accelerated maintenance operations and improved aircraft readiness to support our service members,” the companies said in a statement. “It also proved highly secure interoperability between the AT&T millimeter wave 5G private cellular network and the 5G.MIL pilot network.”

Dan Rice, vice president of 5G.MIL Programs at Lockheed Martin, commented: “These 5G capabilities deployed at scale are expected to enable high-speed, secure-data transfer on virtually any flight line, providing another example of how we’re advancing our 21st Century Security vision by improving customer readiness and operations. In collaboration with commercial 5G leaders, an interoperable 5G.MIL multi-site, multi-vendor network is another step closer to reality.”

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