F-22, F-35 Communications 2017

Cockpit, radar, helmet-mounted display, and other avionics
  • Author
  • Message
User avatar


Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2885
  • Joined: 24 Oct 2008, 00:03
  • Location: Houston

Unread post09 Nov 2017, 01:09

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sh-443005/

USAF puts comms gateway for F-22 and F-35 back on shopping list

08 November, 2017
BY: Stephen Trimble

Washington DC
A communications system that can translate messages between the US Air Force’s most advanced and oldest fighters is back on the service’s expedited shopping list, according to a recent acquisition notice. The Air Force Lifecycle Management Center (AFLCMC) is asking suppliers to provide information about how they could deliver and integrate a “5th to 4th Generation Gateway” system on the USAF’s fighters within 12 months. Details of the USAF’s technical requirements for the gateway system are stamped “for official use only” in a 23 October request for information issued by AFLCMC, so are not publicly disclosed. The RFI represents the “government's market research to assess the current state of existing technical capabilities and interest from industry to provide a 5th Generation to 4th Generation Gateway operational capability in 12 months on airborne platforms,” the AFLCMC says to FlightGlobal. But the need for a system that can translate coded messages in stealth mode between fifth generation fighters, such as Lockheed Martin F-22s and F-35s, and fourth generation fighters, including Boeing F-15s and Lockheed F-16s, has been known for a long time.

The F-22 uses the intra-flight data link (IFDL) to communicate with other F-22s in stealth mode with a low probability of detection or interception. The F-35 uses the multifunction advanced data link (MADL) for the same purpose, but only with other F-35s. Neither the IFDL or MADL is compatible with data links by so-called “fourth-generation” fighters, such as Link-16 and Link-11, which send encrypted messages using waveforms that can be detected by adversaries. Developing a system that can bridge that gap has been pursued for more than a decade. In 2008, the USAF demonstrated that an F-22’s IFDL waveform could be translated into a waveform that could be received by Link-16. The demonstration used the Northrop Grumman Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN). That system is now fielded on USAF E-11s and RQ-4s, but still lacks the ability to bridge the IFDL and Link-16 waveforms operationally. In responses to questions by FlightGlobal, the AFLCMC emphasizes that the new RFI is not limited to potential new applications of the BACN gateway system.

....again, and again!, maybe this time they can get the software loaded in both, before it gets cancelled!
User avatar


Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1943
  • Joined: 12 Jun 2016, 17:36

Unread post09 Nov 2017, 05:09

Since the F-35 MADL uses SDR (software defined radios)... is it possible to program MADL to grok IFDL so that the F-35's can communicate stealthily with the Raptors? Is it just programming the IFDL waveforms into the F-35? Or is the MADL SDR's incapable from a hardware standpoint?
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.


Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 7953
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2006, 19:18
  • Location: California

Unread post09 Nov 2017, 05:28

Depends on the antennas and if the frequencies of IFDL and MADL are hardware compatible.
"The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 783
  • Joined: 20 Nov 2014, 03:34
  • Location: australia

Unread post09 Nov 2017, 10:51

That's going to upset some RU and canard lovers, I use to enjoy how terrible it was that the f-35 could talk on link 16 to the f-22, but the f-22 was mute threads. DOOMED I TELL YOU DOOMED

Aussie fanboy

Return to F-35 Avionics

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests