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A team of six can assemble the Mark IV for real-time operation in 4 hours.

The Mark IV terminal is the predecessor to the Mark IV-B. It is a transportable satellite terminal designed for worldwide tactical deployment in hostile environments. A lightweight ground terminal, the Mark IV can either be towed over rough terrain by M-55 trucks, or transported on C-130 or C-141 aircraft. This terminal has the capability to receive, process, decrypt, display, and distribute the data from any of the DOD or NOAA meteorological satellites. These terminals also can archive data on magnetic tape in parallel with the ingesting, processing, and display of the data.

The terminal provides both IR and visual high-precision imagery in near real time, corrected for distortion caused by the Earth's curvature and enhanced to bring out cloud detail. This imagery can be displayed to a 0.56-kilometer resolution and geographically located, gridded, and annotated.

Mark IV Data
Mark IV data over Southeastern United States

Imagery data from DMSP and TIROS satellites in polar orbit is received by a 3-meter hydraulically driven X-Y antenna, which has automatic pass prediction and autotrack modes of operation. Vehicle parameters are maintained for up to four satellites. Orbital-prediction capability is maintained for all visible passes within an 8-hour period. The antenna tracks from a 0-degree rise through zenith, to a 0-degree fade. The data quality is 10-6 at 10 degrees at the satellite's end of life. Data from the antenna is fed to receivers (1,690-1,715 MHz for TIROS and 2,200-2,300 MHz for DMSP), which can be tuned continuously.

The imagery data is processed by bit synchronizers, recorded on tape, decrypted if necessary, and sent to the Image Generation Subsystem (IGS) hardware and microprocessors. Under the control of a single operator, the IGS can handle automated image processing, interactive image analysis, high resolution dry process hardcopy transparencies, softcopy interactive display, and remote hardcopy and softcopy displays.

Mark IV in South Pole
The South Pole's freezing temperatures are not an obstacle for the Mark IV. During the U.S. Marine deployment exercise, "Operation Deep Freeze" in Antarctica, all systems were go.

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Designed and Developed by

The Aerospace Corp.

John Bohlson, Leonard Daly, and Charles Simmons
The Aerospace Corporation
Last modified on July 03, 1997

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DMSP WebMaster - James Dixon