HomeNewsArticle Display

3rd largest wideband enterprise terminal upgrade in progress

An Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminal stands poised under a protective covering on Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. AFWET terminals communicate with a variety of satellites and keep military branches and other government agencies connected worldwide. The system is currently undergoing its third largest modernization led by a program management team from Hanscom AFB, Mass. (U.S. Air Force photo/Josh Plueger)

An Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminal stands poised under a protective covering on Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. AFWET terminals communicate with a variety of satellites and keep military branches and other government agencies connected worldwide. The system is currently undergoing its third largest modernization led by a program management team from Hanscom AFB, Mass. (U.S. Air Force photo/Josh Plueger)

Underneath the spherical protective coverings are two Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminals located at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. The terminals are among approximately 90 joint systems used worldwide to communicate and transfer information across the Global Information Grid. The AFWET program office from Hanscom AFB, Mass., is in the process of installing new modernization kits onto the systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Josh Plueger)

Underneath the spherical protective coverings are two Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminals located at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. The terminals are among approximately 90 joint systems used worldwide to communicate and transfer information across the Global Information Grid. The AFWET program office from Hanscom AFB, Mass., is in the process of installing new modernization kits onto the systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Josh Plueger)

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. (AFNS) -- A key system that helps ensure the global free flow of information throughout all military branches and other government agencies is undergoing a major overhaul.

Led by a team at Hanscom Air Force Base, the Air Force Wideband Enterprise Terminal system is receiving its third largest upgrade to date, known as the Modernization of Enterprise Terminals.

Using a variety of satellites to transfer both classified and unclassified data, these terminals provide the backbone for the Global Information Grid and keep Airmen connected across the globe. Structurally, AFWET are heavy- or medium-fixed Wideband Global, Defense Satellite Communication System terminals comprised of a radome, electronics and a 38-to 60-foot dish antenna.

Recently, the program team completed the first successful MET kit installation for the AFWET system located at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, signifying the modernization effort is well on its way.

"AFWET is a system of systems, and the MET upgrade modernizes approximately 60 percent of the terminals," said Shawn Patterson, the AFWET program manager, who has spent more than a decade working on the program. "We are steadily ramping up and expect to have another three installations completed shortly."

The Ramstein AB terminal is the first of 32 systems the Air Force is responsible for updating; however, MET is a Defense Department initiative, which will impact an estimated 90 fielded joint terminals altogether.

Since the AFWET program team performs implementation and integration organically -- meaning without the use of prime contractors -- they take advantage of partnering with other services to reduce cost.

For example, the Air Force was able to benefit from research and development performed by other military branches. In addition, the Hanscom AFB program team utilizes a government off-the-shelf approach, which helps maintain a joint standard, promotes a standardized software baseline and results in lower prices on joint terminal purchases with the Army.

"Savings have been quite substantial -- in the millions of dollars," Patterson said. "Since this is an enterprise system, and not specifically for Airmen only, capability as well as cost falls to all of the services."

The AFWET program team's primary focus is the MET modernization; however, they are also responsible for the overall life cycle of the terminals, which includes modernizing and sustaining the remaining 40 percent of the terminals.

"We are the product support integrator," Patterson said. "Addressing other sustainment issues outside the MET modernization is all part of keeping the system alive."

There are 25 targeted sustainment actions currently underway with an additional 15-25 slated for next fiscal year, according to the AFWET program manager.

Some of the sustainment actions include reliability and software modifications, technical refreshes on alarm systems, modem upgrades and updating fiber communications, terrestrial equipment and routers.

With each completed MET and sustainment effort, the life span of the AFWET system is extended.

"The successful installation of the first MET upgrade marks an important milestone in the progress of the AFWET program," said Col. Todd Krueger, the Space, Aerial and Nuclear Networks Division senior materiel leader. "Mr. Patterson and his team have done an outstanding job of preparing for worldwide installation and support while focusing on affordability. They are delivering critical global connectivity for the joint warfighter."

Engage

Twitter
Congratulations to the winners of the annual Air Force Art Contest! More than 790 artists submitted over 1,000 piec… https://t.co/Ig4yL7GiYJ
Twitter
RT @NORADCommand: #NORAD is increasingly integrating its bi-national operations with other commands and allied forces around the globe to e…
Twitter
.@HQUSAFEAFAF #Airmen tackled training obstacles during the multinational Arctic Challenge Exercise 2021. Over 45 d… https://t.co/ClslKugpIl
Twitter
Moody Air Force Base #Airmen conducted a Heritage Flight with the HH-60G Pave Hawk and HH-60W Jolly Green II. The J… https://t.co/8HSXly2zyn
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: ANG Airmen from Maryland, California, Tennessee, Arkansas & Michigan conduct aircraft fire training during PATRIOT 21 in…
Twitter
.@RamsteinAirBase C-130's & Amn w/ the 435th Contingency Response Group are participating alongside the Royal Moroc… https://t.co/b84jylScrA
Twitter
125th Special Tactics Squadron operators conduct a full mission profile exercise in Oregon. The squadron organizes,… https://t.co/9xtrhej53T
Twitter
RT @USAfricaCommand: Moroccan, U.S. fighters & refuelers showcase combined ops 🇲🇦🇺🇸 “Every flight brings another opportunity to work close…
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: Airmen prepare for tactical airlift operations aboard a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, supporting @CJTFOIR. The C-130J deli…
Twitter
RAF Lakenheath performed a missing man flying formation in memory of 1st Lt. Kenneth “Kage” Allen, who was killed a… https://t.co/yrGm4i2dRS
Twitter
RT @NORADCommand: #AmalgamDart brings together personnel and assets from various commands such @INDOPACOM @US_Stratcom @US_SpaceCom @usairf
Twitter
She used to lead cheers for a @NFL team. Now she leads #Airmen at @9thRW, California. The only thing that's changed… https://t.co/Jri6r0mGI0
Twitter
.@AirNatlGuard #Airman is leading a multi-agency effort to create the first anthropometric—or body measurement—stan… https://t.co/2V8ZgBN67g
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: Our EOD Airmen are taking over the night and prepared for the fight any time of the day! The 378th ECES's EOD team locates, i…
Twitter
RT @AFGlobalStrike: Being a flying crew chief on a #B52H is no easy feat. While deployed in forward operating locations, chiefs use their t…
Twitter
#Airmen and @USArmy Soldiers are participating in the virtual 2021 Joint Forces Contracting Exercise. The goal is t… https://t.co/qscGsekWC4
Twitter
Good luck Capt. Westmoreland! #USOpen https://t.co/dE4sq6bnRQ
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: This week, 1000+ personnel from across the nation traveled to Wisconsin to participate in PATRIOT 21. Exercise PATRIOT jo…
Twitter
Check out this week of #airpower on display! Share your favorite and tell us why! Check out the rest of the Week i… https://t.co/CmpDDTMZ21
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,347,936
Follow Us