A comparison of the UHF Follow-on and MILSTAR satellite communication systems
Perkins, Clifton E.
Boger, Dan C.
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The author compares the UHF Follow-on and MILSTAR satellite communication systems. The comparison uses an analytical hierarchy process. Although the two systems have been tasked with different missions, a comparison of cost, capability, and orbit is conducted. UFO provides many of the same capabilities as MILSTAR, but on a smaller scale. Since UFO is also a new space system acquisition, it is used to compare dollars spent to field a viable communication system. A review of frequency bands, losses, and problems is conducted to establish the relationship. Cost data is provided to establish the major difference in the systems. While MILSTAR does possess more total capability than UFO, it is 10 times more costly. Additionally, UFO is a satellite that will evolve with new technology while MILSTAR is built to full capability immediately. In the author's opinion, the incremental performance of MILSTAR does not justify its incremental cost.
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