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The AN/BST-1, a submarine emergency communications transmitter (SECT) system, has been deployed on SSBNs since 1972. A system upgrade providing a long-life battery, increased reliability, and reduced operating costs is under consideration. The upgrade program would be applicable to TRIDENT class submarines and consists of a launch control system (LCS), launcher subsystem, buoy subsystem, and test set subsystem. The LCS would upgrade the launch control unit, release unit, depth sensing unit, and signal unit while using existing cables and hull penetrators, as well as add Built-in Test/Built-in Test Equipment (BIT/BITE) circuitry.

The AN/BST-1 system currently provides for immediate and reliable loss reporting capability. Without notification, the loss or destruction of a TRIDENT submarine would significantly degrade the ability of the CINC to manage strategic forces in a crisis. CJCSI 3150.3, Joint Reporting Structure Event and Incident Reports require a system be in place for immediate notification to the National Military Command Center (NMCC) and CINCs of any incident or event where national level interest is indicated.

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