Airborne Networking Is No Longer Pie in the Sky:

Northrop Grumman has flight tested the Battlefield Airborne Communications Node—an Internet-based communications relay and information server that, flying at extremely high altitude, extends the range of line-of-sight radios to relay data to airborne and surface-based units. It can even link, via satellite, to distant command centers. USAF and Northrop flew the BACN aboard a high-flying NASA WB-57 test aircraft, acting a surrogate for USAF’s RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV. Officials plan to evaluate the system further during the Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment in April.