By Spc. Gregory T. Summers, 1st Signal Brigade Public Affairs Office June 6, 2014
CAMP RED CLOUD, South Korea -- Soldiers from the 304th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, 1st Signal Brigade, traveled from Camp Humphreys to Camp Red Cloud to provide tactical signal support for the 2nd Infantry Division May 28.
A group of Soldiers from 304th ESB's Alpha Company lent a helping hand to their pacific partners by providing one of their Phoenix tactical satellites and a support team. The Phoenix is a key component in communications for the warfighter that allows transmission of high bandwidth from the sky and provides voice, video and data communications.
Pfc. Chelsea L. Dulis, nodal network operator/maintainer, Charlie Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, explained that HHBN was conducting an exercise to test its tactical assets. Already equipped with their own Joint Network Node (JNN), Satellite Transportable Terminal (STT) and a Combined Operational Very Small Aperture Terminals Network Korea (COVN-K), Dulis said they requested 304th ESB's help because they do not have their own Phoenix and it would help in inclement weather.
"If there is inclement weather, rain or cloudy skies, the regular STT won't work as well," Dulis said. "But, the Phoenix will work no matter what. 304th is providing the Phoenix, kind of as a back-up, but is also proving that 2ID's JNN can handle it."
Pfc. David M. Shields, satellite operator/maintainer, Alpha Company, 304th ESB, said that he and his signal team are providing an x-band link that is stable, reliable and can penetrate the satellite in the sky regardless of weather. "It's a different functionality that these guys up here don't get to use, so it's also an opportunity for us to help them hook up to it, cross train and help them out," Shields said.
If 2ID chooses to use one of 1st Signal Brigade's Phoenixes for upcoming exercises like Ulchi Freedom Guardian, they would gain direct access to having communications with Eighth Army.
Also, with South Korea's monsoon season just starting, the Phoenix, already weather proven, would be a great asset for 2ID during the summer months.
Chief Warrant Officer 3 Troy L. Tarazon, a network management technician, 2ID, said the Phoenix will supplement on top of the STT and provide another transmission system. "Bottom line, 304th with their Phoenix, is giving another communications asset for our division," Tarazon said. "This is a proof of concept for us to potentially use a Phoenix during the upcoming Ulchi Freedom Guardian exercise."
Dulis said, "This is my first time working with 1st Signal Brigade and it has been neat and very helpful having them here. It's always nice to have more signal people around."
Sgt. Ashley A. Fabian, the Phoenix Team Chief, said, "We've enjoyed coming down here and supporting 2ID. They have been supportive of us and have taken care of us. We'd love to do it again."