The AN/BRA-27 buoy was installed on several diesel submarines during the late 1960's. It could operate at a speed of 8 - 10 knots and was used successfully for communication purposes during the Cuban missle crisis. The first towed buoys were simply platforms to support a simple mast antenna that was electrically connected to the submarine through a combination tether/transmission line. The losses on this line limited communication performance, particularly at UHF and above. Buoys deployed on diesel submarines contained on-board electronics to avoid the transmission line losses and included high performance, orthogonal loop antennas for VLF/LF reception below the surface (similar to current day SSBN receive-only buoys). Significant hydrodynamic and electrical improvements were made to the multifunction mast antenna that was used when the buoy was on the surface. These buoys could operate two-way voice only in the HF and UHF bands on 4 pre-set channels, with about 15 Watts of transmitter power.
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Updated Wednesday, June 30, 1999 4:31:35 AM