The US Navy will launch its new joint tactical satellite, the tactical microsatellite-4 (TacSat-4), on 27 September, bringing on-the-move communications to the theatre.

The fourth-generation microsatellite will help the combatant to use a hand-held radio for mobile communications and do away with downtime, while maintaining connectivity to the base of operations at all times.

Office of Naval Research (ONR) senior scientist Bob McCoy said, “TacSat-4 fills a navy and marine corps capability gap by enabling ‘comms on the move’.

“That is a unique feature of this system-no other Department of Defense satellite system can relay information from the satellite all the way down to warfighters’ portable communications packs and handheld radios,” he added.

Funded by the ONR and developed by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), TacSat-4 is expected to transmit data after 30 days of its launch.