I’m Tempted to Kick it: Military Inflatable Satellite Dish

GATR_Beach_Ball_SATCOM_Internal_0How many of you remember the gigantic satellite dishes that used to be required in order to watch satellite television? The ones that would physically turn when you changed the channel. We used to have one in our yard. We would always flip the channels from Cartoon Network to Nickelodeon when someone was mowing the lawn in an attempt to knock them down. Good times.

Well those days are gone, and even the military is investing in satellite dishes that won’t kill you when they blow over. That’s why they just put $440 million over 5 years into the development of these inflatable satellite dishes.

The construction is relatively simple. It’s a flexible parabolic dish: think of your basic satellite dish: instead of making it from metals or plastics or ceramic, GATR makes its dish from fabric, meaning it can bend and pull in any direction. That dish is inside of the inflatable sphere. And things have changed since 2005. The company now offers them in 2.4-, 1.8- and 1.2-meter diameters, offering a greater range of usages to our armed forces. They can be built and running in about a half-hour.

Hit the jump for a video of the set up.