Imagine a B-2 waiting orders from the White House whether to drop a nuclear bomb on a enermy site or call it off in Iran, North Korea, Syria. That order has to be delivered to the bomber in a timely and trustworthy way.
With the Common Very Low Frequency Receiver Increment 1, or CVR-1 program, the U.S. Air Force fleet of B-2 stealth bombers will be given another more reliable way to receive orders from the President of the U.S. via EAMs (Emergency Action Messages).
Currently, the flying wing bomber uses a UHF system that relies on satellite relay. However, the constellation of Military Strategic Tactical and Relay, MILSTAR, satellites is becoming a bit too obsolete and will not be upgraded. Until a replacement is found, with the upgraded communication system, the B-2 will bypass satellites: its radios will be capable to receive VLF (Very Low Frequency) signals bounced off of lower levels of the atmosphere.
CVR Increment 1 is to be fielded in 2017.
How is this different from the SLFCS system in use since the ’70s?
Good question. I used to work at the Silver Creek SLFCS site (1980-82) but that and Hawes have been decommissioned. Where are the VLF transmitters? Our antenna was reportedly 10′ shorter than the Empire State Building and the biggest lightening rod for several states. How will they incorporate a VLF antenna on the B-2?
“its radios will be capable to receive VLF (Very Low Frequency) signals bounced off of lower levels of the atmosphere.”
I think you mean the upper levels of the atmosphere. Specifically, the ionosphere.
Well, I hope they were not only reling on satellites for that…
And maybe it’s even for the better to have a non-satellite option.
0bama wants to bomb Syria with the B-2’s, right? How stealth are the B-2’s anyway? Didn’t the Serbians shoot down a F-117 supposedly stealth the USAF then retired them?
MILSTAR uses the Q & Ka bands, not UHF. It’d be very easy to jam UHF frequencies.