A production PANTERA pod was modified in-country by Royal Norwegian Air Force personnel in less than one hour to provide the downlink capability. The data downlink demonstration included both a ground-based safety-of-flight electromagnetic compatibility test and two flying missions. The downlink performed flawlessly and was shown to have no adverse affects on other aircraft systems.
Representatives from both the Royal Norwegian Air Force (RNoAF) and the Norwegian Army witnessed the demonstration and were impressed with the success of this first-time event. The downlink system transmitted a real-time PANTERA video stream to a downlink ground station from the F-16 aircraft at tactically significant ranges. It was "absolutely phenomenal," stated Lou Karbiener, PANTERA Norway program manager. "The system exceeded even our most optimistic operational expectations."
The Sniper XR/PANTERA downlink supports the armed forces move towards a net-centric battlespace, allowing ground forces to view the battlefield from the airborne vantage point by providing wireless, scrambled, real-time streaming video (infrared and day TV) from the aircraft to ground forces. Linking targeting sensor imagery to ground forces significantly enhances their situational awareness, allows for greater precision and shortens timelines in coordinating air and ground operations.
The Sniper XR/PANTERA downlink is compatible with currently fielded, man- portable ground receiver stations (Rover III) and features a long-range line- of-sight transmission radius. User-defined pod symbology, including aircraft display indications and Global Positioning System (GPS) information, are contained in the video transmission. Additionally, this downlink allows for simultaneous video transmission from multiple downlink-equipped aircraft operating in the same airspace.
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