Aerostar High Altitude Balloon (HAB) Support for Valiant Shield 2024

Aerostar High Altitude Balloon (HAB) Support for Valiant Shield 2024


Aerostar high altitude balloon systems used to conduct multi-domain training for the U.S. Indo-Pacific command joint forces.

June 26, 2024--- FORT SHAFTER, HAWAII. Aerostar Thunderhead High Altitude Balloon Systems (HABs) were recently used to conduct multi-domain training for the US Army Pacific’s, 3rd Multi-Domain Task Force near Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands in support of Valiant Shield 2024. According to an Army release, “equipped with electromagnetic sensing and mesh communications equipment, the HABs helped inform future maritime domain awareness innovation and experimentation.”

In this exercise, Aerostar partnered with the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD R&E) to demonstrate high altitude platforms establishing redundant communication networks in the event of a crisis or natural disaster. Thunderhead balloons have exercised regularly in the Indo-Pacific to demonstrate extended range sensing and maritime domain awareness capabilities.

Over the past decade, advances from the commercial sector in the areas of navigation, solar technology, batteries, beyond line-of-sight communication, and software have increased the operating range and endurance of HABs and expanded potential use-cases for the Department of Defense. With more than 2 million total flight hours in the stratosphere, successful missions over all seven continents, and single balloon flights exceeding 150 days duration, Aerostar has proven global reach and capabilities to operate in diverse environments.

High altitude balloons typically operate in the range of 50,000 to 110,000 feet above sea level. Aerostar HABs communicate like other commercial aircraft, remotely piloted via satellite communications. As with all Aerostar flights, all operations are conducted in full compliance with applicable national and international laws and regulations regarding flight operations. HABs are operating under direct control of U.S. operators during the entire flight.

About Aerostar

With nearly 70 years of lighter-than-air innovation and expertise, Aerostar is dedicated to connecting, protecting, and saving lives. Headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Aerostar provides world-leading solutions in the aerospace and defense market, focused on stratospheric balloon systems and radar solutions. Learn more at Aerostar is part of the TCOM portfolio of aerospace and defense companies.

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Anastasia Quanbeck

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