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NEWS | July 5, 2023

Tobyhanna showcases agility, collaboration with new satellite terminal project

By Mr. Nicolo Manzo and Ms. Danielle Weinschenk

A unique and dynamic new mission is expanding Tobyhanna Army Depot’s (TYAD’s) portfolio of capabilities.

Personnel from the depot’s Production Engineering Directorate recently completed the inaugural Hardened Transportable Terminal – Modified (HTT-M) – the perfect example of how TYAD’s dynamic workforce and innovative approaches position the organization to deliver superior C5ISR readiness for the joint warfighter.

Depot personnel worked with the Missile Defense Agency and Department of Defense (DOD) contractors to design and manufacture a modification of the existing Hardened Transportable Terminal (HTT.)   The term “hardened” refers to the terminal’s ability to endure interference produced by high-altitude electromagnetic pulse threats.

The HTT-M is the key element of communications support to the deployed AN/TPY-2 radars. The HTT-M provides High-Altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (also known as HEMP) and nuclear, biological, and chemical survivable communications. The asset is a subset of the Modernization of Enterprise Terminals (MET) program, a multi-year, multi-million-dollar mission to upgrade nearly 90 communication terminals across the world. The modernizations provide heightened stability and provide ten times more bandwidth for satellite communications used by Soldiers and DOD officials globally. While the HTT’s main purpose is to serve as a temporary bridge between METs, it can become a permanent fixture when a MET is not a viable option due to space constraint.

The 3-year design, development and manufacturing project represents a major success for Team Tobyhanna, according to Jonathan Strzelec, chief of the Production Engineering Directorate’s SATCOM and Site Installation Division.

“Tobyhanna Army Depot has taken on similar projects in the past, but this is the first of its kind for this specific variant. We built the entire thing from floor to ceiling in an effort that was kind of like building a house – we even built the kitchen sink, for lack of a better term,” he said.

The prototype HTT-M includes several storage containers with environmental control units, a generator, and a hardened operations and maintenance van.

Engineering Lead Nicholas Paras outlined the herculean effort, noting that it included the talents of artisans from across the depot.

“This build required the fabrication of more than 1,800 piece parts as well as extensive welding, wiring and painting by team members in the Systems Integration and Support (SIS) Directorate,” he said. “SIS also completed the integration of the shelters and worked closely with engineering personnel for installation tasks,” adding that extensive testing was conducted by engineers and engineering technicians once the HTT-M was fully assembled.

According to Mike Vivlemore, the workload provided an opportunity for TYAD engineers to challenge themselves and reaffirm depot capabilities.

“This was an exercise in proving our capabilities. This project both challenged and improved our already lofty design capabilities,” said Vivlemore. Vivlemore serves as the chief of the Production Engineering Directorate’s Design, Development and Fabrication Division.

Strzelec lauded the effort and its benefits for both the customer and Team Tobyhanna.

“This project adds to the already impressive list of assets Tobyhanna has provided to our Nation’s warfighters,” he said.

The satellite communications enabled by the HTTM are critical part of warfighter readiness, and the mission directly aligns with Tobyhanna’s long-range strategic plan, TOBY2035, which has four focus areas: Investing in Our People, C5ISR Readiness, Shape the Future and Strategic Communications. TOBY2035 aims to posture the depot for success in the coming years as the Department of Defense's premier worldwide C5ISR readiness provider.

Tobyhanna Army Depot is a recognized leader in providing world-class logistics support for command, control, communications, computers, cyber, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C5ISR) systems across the Department of Defense. Tobyhanna’s Corporate Philosophy, dedicated work force and electronics expertise ensure the depot is the Joint C5ISR provider of choice for all branches of the Armed Forces and industry partners.

Tobyhanna’s unparalleled capabilities include full-spectrum logistics support for sustainment, overhaul and repair, fabrication and manufacturing, engineering design and development, systems integration, post production software support, technology insertion, modification, foreign military sales and global field support to our joint warfighters.

About 3,200 personnel are employed at Tobyhanna, located in the Pocono Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania. Tobyhanna Army Depot is part of the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command. Headquartered at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, the command’s mission is to empower the Soldier with winning C5ISR capabilities.